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‘How the heck does he determine’ there wasn’t obstruction?: Ex-solicitor general slams Barr’s letter on Mueller probe

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Former acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal explained why Americans should question the findings of Attorney General William Barr’s letter to Cogress following the completion of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

Katyal joined MSNBC anchor Katy Tur for analysis after Barr’s letter was released.

“This is going to come down to trust. Do you trust the assessment of Attorney General William Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein?” Tur asked.

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“I really wanted to trust them, but quite honestly this letter caused me much more concern, grave concerns really,” Katyal replied.

“Because remember Mueller — after two years of investigation — doesn’t draw a conclusion one way or another on obstruction of justice, saying there’s evidence on both sides. And then you have Attorney General Barr — within 48 hours of receiving this — saying ‘I conclude that the evidence isn’t there’ and in particular not evidence of Trump’s intent,” he explained.

“Now how the heck does he determine that after 48 hours — after a two-year investigation — and particularly without even trying to interview trump, if the whole question is Trump’s state of mind,” he continued.

“I expect any reasonable prosecutor to try and get that information — that appears not to have been done, there’s nothing in the letter about that,” he noted. “I think there is going to be a fear among the American public there’s been a whitewash here.”

But absolutely, the letter raises far more concerns than it does provide answers,” he concluded.

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“I hate saying that, but I have to say, given what Barr found on obstruction of justice, I think all of us should be very concerned even-handedness of the way this investigation was treated,” Katyal added.

“I think there is reason to be very concerned, given what he wrote here — that you have a two-year investigation and Mueller doesn’t make the final determination — says there’s evidence on both sides — and then you have Barr swoop in and within 48 hours make a decision,” he continued. “There is something deeply troubling about that, and it’s the same troubling thing identified during the Barr hearings, which is he wrote this kooky 19-page memo which said, effectively, presidents can’t obstruct justice.

“I’m worried that this is part of that ludicrous legal view. i don’t know what Barr’s ultimate decisions were here because he doesn’t tell us and that’s the point.

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“The American public needs to know — Congress needs to know — how exactly did he conclude there was no obstruction of justice and if it’s really about the lack of intent on the part of Trump, how the heck could he know that when he didn’t even try and interview Trump?” Katyal concluded.

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George Conway reveals Trump is being shunned by law firms because young lawyers ‘want nothing to do with him’

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Conservative attorney George Conway asserted in a column over the weekend that President Donald Trump's history of mistreating law firms is catching up with him.

In a Sunday op-ed for The Washington Post, Conway explains that Trump is now faced with sparse choices for legal representation in his impeachment trial after years of not paying attorneys and generally being a bad client.

Pointing to Trump's choice of Alan Dershowitz and Kenneth Starr, Conway writes:

?The president has consistently encountered difficulty in hiring good lawyers to defend him. In 2017, after Robert S. Mueller III became special counsel, Trump couldn’t find a high-end law firm that would take him as a client. His reputation for nonpayment preceded him: One major Manhattan firm I know had once been forced to eat bills for millions in bond work it once did for Trump. No doubt other members of the legal community knew of other examples.

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Texas GOPer Cornyn blames Trump’s problems on campaign ‘grifters’ — then calls Giuliani ‘not relevant’

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Appearing on CBS's “Face the Nation," Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) attempted to blame Donald Trump's impeachment problems on "grifters" who found a way to attach themselves to the now-president when he began to run for president.

Speaking with host Margaret Brennan, Cornyn was asked about allegations made by Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas that have implicated not only the president but Vice President Mike Pence and senior White House officials in an attempt to strongarm the leaders of Ukraine in return for military aid.

"Doesn't it trouble you that [Parnas] was working so closely with Rudy Giuliani, who was acting on the president's behalf and saying he was acting on the president's behalf?" host Brennan asked. "

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‘No sound basis’: Georgetown law professor explains why Alan Dershowitz will crumble under Senate questioning

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Georgetown law professor John Mikhail suggested on Sunday that the portion of President Donald Trump's defense which is being covered by Alan Dershowitz to fail because it has "no sound basis" in history and law.

"There is no sound basis for Alan Dershowitz to claim that abuse of power is not an impeachable offense. In addition to being at odds with common sense, this claim is contradicted by a clear and consistent body of historical evidence," Mikhail stated.

The law professor cited the impeachment of Warren Hastings in the 1780s.

"Some of the best evidence comes from the case of Warren Hastings, which informed the drafting Art. II, Sec 4," Mikhail wrote. "The fact that he was not guilty of treason, but still deserved to be impeached, was a major reason 'other high crimes and misdemeanors' was added to the Constitution."

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