'It is over:' Republicans close ranks at Barr hearing

Mueller and Barr

Infuriated Democrats quickly threatened to censure him for contempt.

Even as Democratic lawmakers accused the Trump administration of a growing attack on US democracy and the authority of Congress, the White House showed no sign of backing down.

Barr released Mueller's report on April 18, with some parts blacked out to protect sensitive information.

"He lied to Congress", Pelosi said, apparently referring to Barr's testimony under oath before lawmakers in April.

The hearing comes as a Washington Post story reveals Mueller told Barr he was frustrated with how the conclusions of his investigation were being portrayed.

Barr has come under attack from Democrats following his testimony on Wednesday, where he defended his handling of special counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation report, amid accusations that he misrepresented its findings.

Pence: Report About FBI Spying on Aide 'Very Troubling'
The report calls the American government's affiliation with the woman a "previously unreported detail of an operation". But the Times said in its report Friday that the Federal Bureau of Investigation was "alarmed" and had to act.

"If anybody else did that, it would be considered a crime", Pelosi said. Beginning with the May 1st visit to the Senate to answer questions related to the Mueller investigation and Barr's handling of the Mueller end-product report document, Democrats began insulting the Attorney General, demanding his resignation and calling him and other Trump staffers scandalous names. It also concluded that Trump and his campaign had not engaged in criminal conspiracy with Moscow.

Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler threatened to hold Barr in contempt of Congress if he does not provide a full, unredacted copy of Mueller's report and the underlying evidence, as the panel has requested by a subpoena that had a Wednesday deadline.

"The challenge we face is that the president of the United States wants desperately to prevent Congress, a co-equal branch of government, from providing any check whatsoever to even his most reckless decisions", Nadler said.

The brief hearing was notable for Barr's empty seat.

The constant mantra from the Democrats these last two years has been that Trump obstructed justice via attempts to derail the Mueller investigation by threatening to fire Mueller, tweeting about the unfairness of the investigation into non-existent collusion, and numerous comments he made in criticism of the on-going Mueller harassment of himself and his associates.

"Prosecutors simply are not in the business of establishing innocence, any more than they are in the business of "exonerating" investigated persons", Flood wrote in a mid-April letter to Barr that was published by USA media Thursday.

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