The problem with working for a big dumb pathologicial liar is he turns you into one. Just ask Attorney General Bill Barr.
Barr appeared on Wolf Blitzer’s CNN show Wednesday night for an interview that quickly went off the rails. Blitzer directly asked about Barr about Donald Trump’s quote implying that North Carolina voters should try voting twice—once by mail, once in person. After being read his boss’ quote, Barr fumbled over himself and offered a two-bit cover for Trump’s nonchalant stupidity.
"I don't know what the law in the particular state says" — Wolf Blitzer has to explain to the Attorney General of the United States that it's actually illegal to vote twice pic.twitter.com/ytDfzZoZV6
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 2, 2020
Turns out the leading law man in the United States doesn’t know it’s illegal to vote twice in the United States. Barr does know this, of course—he’s simply covering for Trump, the man who wields him like a political cudgel, and subverting the law because he doesn’t actually care about it unless it serves his boss. Barr isn’t particularly good at playing dumb, however—he makes it too obvious that he can’t find meaning in Trump’s words that aren’t felonious. He makes it even more obvious when he peddles the president’s conspiracies about Antifa.
AG Barr on antifa: "We know people who are flying around the country — we know where they're going. We see some of the purchases they're making before the riots." pic.twitter.com/7pxunvMEbM
— The Hill (@thehill) September 3, 2020
Here, Barr essentially breathes life into the president’s absurd lie that black-clad shadow people are puddle-jumping from city to city to spread anarchy, a fiction derived from a boomer Facebook post. The AG adds all the requisite weighty legal speak, that the Department of Justice has been tracking these people, their activity, and their purchases of weapons for riots. It all sounds very serious, but it’s just a function of Trump and Barr’s plan to heighten far left violence as the real problem in America. To give Barr the tiniest crumb of credit here, he at least acknowledges that Antifa isn’t a literal group (as Republicans have been crying for months). But stating fact gives away Barr’s game—Antifa isn’t an enormous group of riotous anarchists, so why is it receiving so much attention?
For all that absurdity, the final thing Barr says truly takes the cake—that crossing state lines to riot is illegal. That’s exactly what Trump’s favorite teenager murderer Kyle Rittenhouse did when he drove to Kenosha, Wisc. and shot two protestors. The president and all of right wing media has taken to defending Rittenhouse and lauding him as a hero for taking the law into his own hands. How can Burr possibly sit there whinging about Antifa purchasing weapons for riots and crossing state lines to incite chaos when his boss and cronies are openly celebrating a kid who took an illegal firearm across state lines and actually killed people?
Of course Barr can’t square that circle and has no interest in doing so. The Attorney General is an entirely political animal, bereft of any respect or care for the law he’s sworn to enforce. He’s the president’s attack dog, trained to investigate, arrest, acquit, and lie on command. Playing dumb just comes with the territory.