‘Tide has turned’ against Bill Barr as GOP lawmakers increasingly back away from Trump's hand-picked AG: NBC regular
Attorney General nominee Bill Barr/MSNBC screen shot

NBC News national affairs analyst John Heileman explained how Attorney General Bill Barr is losing the support of Senate Republicans on MSNBC's "The Last Word" on Thursday.

Host Lawrence O'Donnell showed a tweet by Sen. Chuck Grassley:

"He could have easily not put that tweet out today," O'Donnell noted. "He used to be the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee which would have had direct jurisdiction, he would have been receiving these letters from Barr, so he's an important voice among Republicans on this kind of issue."

Heilemann, who also hosts Showtime's "The Circus," offered his thoughts on the motivations for Mueller's team to be reportedly leaking to the press.

"These people who dedicated their lives to this are incredibly p*ssed off -- that is the right word," Heilemann suggested.

"It's feeding into this political situation that Grassley is part of. Bill Barr was in a very tenuous situation politically when he got this job, the tide has now turned against him dramatically," he explained. "You see that on the Democratic side 100 percent -- no benefit of the doubt for him anymore."

"And Republicans are starting to feel the same way," he added.

"What happens is the relentless pounding of negative stories that come out later could easily supplant the positive first impression from that Monday," Heilemann noted. 'This could make the situation worse for Trump, rather than better."