Bill Barr backs legitimacy of Trump indictment, says he’ll testify confidently against ex-boss

Former Attorney General Bill Barr doubled down on his claims that Special Counsel Jack Smith’s indictment of his onetime boss for election interference is “legitimate” and stated he is willing to testify against former President Donald Trump.

On CBS News’s “Face the Nation,” Barr repeated his assertion that Trump’s statements are not protected by the First Amendment — a claim he made last week on CNN.

The comments contradict one he previously made on “Face the Nation,” in which he said, “the January 6 case will be a hard case to make because of First Amendment interest.”

(Video: YouTube)

“It’s certainly a challenging case, but I don’t think it runs afoul of the First Amendment,” Barr told host Major Garrett on Sunday. “From a prosecutor’s standpoint, I think it’s a legitimate case.”

“There’s a lot of confusion out there,” he continued. “This involved a situation where the states had already made the official authoritative determination as to who won in those states, and they sent the votes and certified them to Congress.”

“The allegation essentially by the government has been at that point, the president conspired, entered into a scheme that involved a lot of deceit, the object of which was to erase those votes, to nullify those lawful votes,” he explained.

Barr noted that federal prosecutors aren’t going after Trump solely for his claims that the election was fraudulent.

“They go beyond that,” he stated, pointing to “the substation of bogus panels,” “false” certifications, and “pressuring the vice president to use that as a pretext to adopt the Trump votes.”

“You have to remember, a conspiracy crime is completed at the time, it’s agreed to and first steps are taken,” Barr said. “That’s it. That’s when the crime is complete from a prosecutor’s point of view.”

Barr claimed that he told Trump “in no uncertain terms that there was no evidence of fraud that would have changed the outcome” of the 2020 election.

“One of those associated with Trump’s defense team has said, if you were called as a witness, they would cross-examine you and pierce all of that by asking you questions that you couldn’t, to their mind, credibly answer about how thorough that investigation was that led you to tell the president what you told him,” Garrett replied. “How thorough was that investigation?”

“I think it satisfied us that there was no basis for concluding that there had been fraud in those instances,” Barr answered. “Some of them were obvious. One that he keeps on repeating is that more people voted than absentee ballots that were requested, and that was mixing apples and oranges. And once that was explained to him, we should have heard no more about that.”

“Would you appear as a witness if called?” Garrett asked.

“Of course,” Barr replied without hesitance.

Following Barr’s earlier appearance on CNN, Fox News host Mark Levin tore into him, calling Smith’s indictment “crap.”

“This indictment, Mr. Barr, is crap!” Levin fumed. “And the reason they didn’t bring insurrection, and seditious conspiracy is because there was no insurrection and seditious conspiracy.”



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Melissa Fine


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