'Abuse of power': MSNBC's Joe Scarborough shreds Bill Barr -- and his 'partner in crime' Rod Rosenstein
Joe Scarborough (MSNBC)

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough and Mike Barnicle trashed Attorney General William Barr -- and his "partner in crime" Rod Rosenstein -- for misleading the public about special counsel Robert Mueller's report.

The "Morning Joe" host opened Wednesday's program by accusing Barr of perjuring himself April 9 in testimony before the U.S. Senate, when the attorney general told lawmakers he did not know why Mueller's team was "frustrated" with his report on their findings -- despite having a letter to that effect from Mueller himself.

"(Barr) grossly mischaracterized the (report)," Scarborough said. "To borrow a phrase from former Chief Justice William Rehnquist, wrenched Mueller's words from their proper context, then held a highly misleading and politicized press conference. After that, testified before the Senate and the House (and) misled, grossly misled, United States senators, and outright lied to (Sen.) Charlie Crist and the House of Representatives."

"That, under any circumstance," he added, "is an abuse of power. All the king's horses and all the king's men, and all the hacks on the on the new Trump right can't put that mess back together. Humpty Dumpty fell off the wall, he pushed himself off the wall himself, and his reputation lies in a thousand pieces. He abused his official power."

Barnicle said that was an understatement, and implicated the outgoing deputy attorney general in the apparent coverup of Mueller's findings.

"In this case, Humpty Dumpty had a partner in crime, it appears," Barnicle said. "Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general of the United States."

"It appears," he added, "that the sitting attorney general of the United States, the deputy attorney general of the United States have, at minimum, twisted the truth about a critical report worked on for two years by Bob Mueller and several other people who work for Bob Mueller."

Barnicle said he was disturbed by reports that showed the Justice Department was angered by Mueller's letter complaining about the way Barr mischaracterized his findings.

"What would possibly frustrate them about the truth?" he said.