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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2019 5:32 pm 
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I hate to see Mr. Barr's character being trashed now. Jonathan Turley knows Barr and speaks highly of him. I've always liked Jonathan Turley.

https://thehill.com/opinion/judiciary/425800-5-myths-about-william-barr

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2019 6:49 pm 
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I don't see that anyone is trashing Barr's character, but just like any other public figure he is not and certainly should not be immune to criticism. His submittal of an unsolicited memo to the Justice Department highly critical of the Mueller investigation certainly gives the impression of pandering to Mr. Trump, particularly since he was the one that ended up making the call on whether to indict Mr. Trump on the very issue that he was so critical of the Mueller investigation on. And his submittal of such a brief and slanted "summary" of the Mueller report (it has now been confirmed that the report is between 300 and 400 pages, meaning that Barr's summary letter was about 1% as long, and only directly quoted part of one sentence from the report) also gives the impression that he is doing everything possible to protect Mr. Trump rather than proceeding objectively. Until and unless he promptly releases the full report and the underlying evidence without unreasonable redactions, he is and should be subject to criticism.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2019 7:00 pm 
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Re trashing Barr's character, aren't you essentially here calling him a liar?

Voronwë the Faithful wrote:
As for as I am concerned (and this has been the case as soon as I saw Barr's letter) the question has never been whether Barr misrepresented the Mueller Report but to what extent he did so.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2019 10:22 pm 
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No, I'm saying by presenting only an extremely short summary of a voluminous report that is clearly slanted as favorably as possible to Mr. Trump, he is misrepresenting the Mueller report to an extent that is undetermined until and less we see the full report. Nothing more and nothing less. I am making no comment one way or another as to whether he has a propensity to tell falsehoods. I am commenting on one action that he has taken as it appears to me.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2019 11:23 pm 
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Similar to William Barr's involvement in the Iran-Contra case? He has some history.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:10 am 
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Voronwë, I do not follow the logic of you saying you are certain Barr has misled with his summary, since you do not know what is in the report.

We know that we will not see the full report. Mr. Barr is required by law to remove some grand jury and national security related things. So if only the full report will satisfy those convinced of the President's guilt, then we already know they will never be satisfied, and they may forever claim that Barr misled with his summary.

Those who are more open-minded on the issue of Trump's guilt might be satisfied with the redacted report, and then they will be able to make a judgment as to whether Mr. Barr misled with his summary.

It doesn't make sense to me that Barr would mislead knowing he would later be found out when the report was released. He never opposed the release of the report, so he wrote the summary knowing its veracity would soon be open to evaluation.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2019 2:18 pm 
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First of all, contrary to what you say, other than anything in the report that would compromise any ongoing investigations can and should be released publicly. A court order allowing release of the grand jury material can easily be obtained, and Mr. Trump himself can declassify anything that he chooses. Based on the repeated statements of Mr. Giuliani, it is clear that they want to have an opportunity to redact things to "correct" the report, not to protect sensitive information.

As for why I am convinced that the summary is misleading, any summary that short of a report that long is by definition bound to be misleading to some extent. As I said before it remains to be seen how misleading. But there are certain aspects of the summary that suggest that it is particularly misleading. One is that there is not a single quote from the report that is a full sentence. Not one. For instance, look it the quote that provided the biggest headlines, and was the most exculpatory part of the summary: "'[T]he investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.'" Looks like a sentence, right? Nope. The brackets around the "T" in the first word show that it was actually lowercase and thus extracted from a longer sentence. What does the rest of the sentence say? Most likely, it says something about what the investigation did establish with regard to Mr. Trump, his campaign and/or his associates and their role in election interference. The other quotes from the report in the summary are similar:

“while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” and
“the evidence does not establish that the President was involved in an underlying crime related to Russian election interference,"

What do the full sentences say, and why aren't they quoted in full? We don't know, and we won't know until the full report is released. Clearly, those quotes will have a different meaning when in full context. Maybe only a little different, or maybe very different. But different nonetheless.

As for why Barr would release a misleading summary if the full (or even mostly full) report is bound to be released subsequently? That's easy, to set the narrative. The initial storyline is always the one that leaves the biggest impression, and in this case it is "Trump is exonerated!!!!!!111" Even if the full report gives a more nuanced message, that is likely to be muted by the initial message.

Recently, the Justice Department took the extraordinary step of changing its position on the court decision in which the District Court ruled that the entire Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional. Before the Justice Department took the position that only a limited portion of the law should be thrown out but now it says that it agrees with the judge's ruling (despite the fact that legal scholars from across the spectrum have criticized the ruling). According to the reports, this was done at the president's order, despite Barr's disagreement. That tells me everything I need to know about Barr's level of independent from this president.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2019 2:22 pm 
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As an aside, Tapatalk is now serving Trump * Pence banners on HoF.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2019 3:56 pm 
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I don't know how typical it is for an Attorney General to resist/yield to the directive of the President who appointed him/her when their opinions differ. Is the AG there to represent the priorities of the administration s/he serves, or to represent his/her own priorities? Can you give examples of AGs who pursued a legal course contrary to the wishes of the President who appointed them? I tried googling but came up empty.

A difference of opinion could reflect a deep matter of conscience, or it could be more superficial.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2019 4:56 pm 
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Sally Yates, who was acting AG at the beginning of the current administration, refused to defend Mr. Trump's travel ban and was fired by Mr. Trump in response. Also, my understanding is that Eric Holder decided to stop defending the Defense of Marriage act before President Obama completed his so-called evolution on same-sex marriages, though Obama subsequently agreed with him.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2019 1:37 am 
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More evidence that Barr's letter was misleading.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/03/us/p ... eport.html

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2019 2:02 am 
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That's a very strange first paragraph:

Quote:
WASHINGTON — Some of Robert S. Mueller III’s investigators have told associates that Attorney General William P. Barr failed to adequately portray the findings of their inquiry and that they were more troubling for President Trump than Mr. Barr indicated, according to government officials and others familiar with their simmering frustrations.


So if I follow the convolution correctly, some unnamed government officials and some unnamed people familiar with these unnamed officials' frustrations have said that some unnamed investigators have told some of their unnamed associates that Barr failed to adequately portray findings.

edit

I apologize for my rude comment. I should have, rather, explained that I don't think this fourth hand anonymous sourcing would pass muster on any other subject than Trump. It's another example, imo, of how the zeal to see Trump brought down is warping people's judgment and, in this case, their journalistic integrity.

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Last edited by Cerin on Thu Apr 04, 2019 6:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2019 3:34 am 
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It's a very carefully calculated warning shot to the current DoJ leadership. Mueller's team was water-tight while they were working but now they are getting stroppy. That's the only take-home.

I can't blame them for being ticked off. They put a lot of work into it and all they've got to show for it is a weird four-page summary letter that has only a few sentence fragments quoted from the original >300 page text.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2019 6:09 pm 
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It will be interesting to see this situation from a 10-20 year rear-view mirror perspective when all that is to be shaken out has been shaken.

Trump's own behavior (and that of his family/those on his team like Manifort, etc.. ) has not helped matters. There is plenty to side-eye. Tearing up transcripts after meeting with Putin. Only allowing Putin/Russian translators, having unscheduled private meetings. Praising Putin and the likes of Kim Jong Un, etc.. and denigrating our allies. Pushing through security clearances that should not have been issued. Setting up 'back-channels' to the Saudi's and others. This is not normal behavior. We have every right to question it. It would not (and should not) be acceptable if another candidate had won. If I had a kid pulling this sort of thing (say, with other kids I knew were involved in drugs) I'd be beyond suspicious. It might all be innocent, but it sure doesn't look that way.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 07, 2019 4:38 pm 
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This article explains the four categories of information Barr et al are redacting from the Mueller report, and says that the report is not being turned over to the White House for redaction, contrary to what was reported earlier.

WashPost

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 9:16 pm 
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Cerin wrote:
This article explains the four categories of information Barr et al are redacting from the Mueller report, and says that the report is not being turned over to the White House for redaction, contrary to what was reported earlier.


However, when he testified before the House Appropriations Committee he refused to answer the question as to whether the report is being turned over the White House for a privilege review, which suggests that it is.

Regarding the four categories, I don't have a problem with any of them in theory, but it remains to be seen how they are applied. The grand jury material is pretty straightforward, I think. Unless a court orders it produced, it needs to be withheld. As I read the current law, including a case that was just decided a couple of years ago, the only way that is going to happen is if the House begins an impeachment proceedsing, which is not imminent. As for the other categories, the one that concerns me the most is the last one, the "details that would violate the privacy of those deemed 'peripheral' to the investigation." I suspect that he might interpret that very broadly, and redact everything related to anyone - including Mr. Trump - who was not actually indicted. That would make the redact report useless.

But we should see soon, as I expect the redacted report to be transmitted over the weekend to minimize the attention it gets.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 4:58 pm 
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Voronwë the Faithful wrote:
As for the other categories, the one that concerns me the most is the last one, the "details that would violate the privacy of those deemed 'peripheral' to the investigation." I suspect that he might interpret that very broadly, and redact everything related to anyone - including Mr. Trump - who was not actually indicted. That would make the redact report useless.


I saw a report today (sorry I don't have the link) that indicated that he was asked about that at his Senate Appropriations Committee testimony last week (the day after his House Appropriations Committee testimony) and that he indicated that he was referring only to private individuals, not public figures (which presumably would include Mr. Trump and his aides and associates). Hopefully that is true.

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But we should see soon, as I expect the redacted report to be transmitted over the weekend to minimize the attention it gets.


Nope. The latest word that I have heard is that it will be released on Thursday, which would be slightly longer than the "within a week" that Barr indicated early last week. I would not at all be surprised if that gets pushed back further and it is still realized over a weekend, just next weekend rather than this past weekend. But we'll see.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:53 pm 
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I have also heard that the redactions will be color-coded to the four categories. If nothing else, it will make for a colorful document! But that should also be helpful in determining the nature of the redactions (though obviously it is still too soon to see whether the redactions will prevent us from getting a real sense of what the investigation actually found (or at least one part of the investigation, because apparently this report does NOT cover the counter-intelligence aspect of the investigation).

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 7:59 pm 
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Voronwë the Faithful wrote:
I have also heard that the redactions will be color-coded to the four categories. If nothing else, it will make for a colorful document! But that should also be helpful in determining the nature of the redactions (though obviously it is still too soon to see whether the redactions will prevent us from getting a real sense of what the investigation actually found (or at least one part of the investigation, because apparently this report does NOT cover the counter-intelligence aspect of the investigation).


Maybe we'll get 'lucky' and the PDF will retain the original text if you just copy and paste... :roll:

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 12:32 am 
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I won't say never because I never thought it could happen once, but I think the Justice Department is probably likely to be wee bit more careful than Manafort's attorneys. However, a federal judge indicated today that he might order the Justice Department to turn over the unredacted version to him so that he can review the redactions and confirm that they are as limited as possible.

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