Calling it both "surreal" and "inexplicable," a former prosecutor previously assigned to the Southern District of New York hammered Attorney General Bill Barr over his attempt to fire lead prosecutor Geoffrey Berman in a late Friday night purge.
According to CNN legal analyst Elie Honig, Barr's actions amounted to nothing less than a "political takeover."
Speaking with hosts Victor Blackwell and Christi Paul, Hoenig seemed genuinely stunned by Barr's actions and noted that due to a legal quirk, Barr can't fire Berman --- but Donald Trump can.
With host Blackwell noting that Barr asked Berman to step down and being rebuffed, he asked Honig to explain what happens next.
"This whole situation is completely surreal to watch this unfold," the former prosecutor admitted. "Basically when most people are going to bed on a Friday night -- first of all, you have the attorney general, we find out very quickly, lying to the country. He says, Geoffrey Berman has stepped down. Geoffrey Berman says, I have not."
"Secondly the person William Barr has announced will be the permanent replacement for Geoffrey Berman at the head of the Southern District of New York, is a guy named Jay Clayton who has zero prosecutorial experience. Putting somebody who has never prosecuted a case in charge of the Southern District of New York, which I would argue is the most independent prosecutor's office, is completely inexplicable" he continued, to which Blackwell replied, "Unless you don't want him to prosecute?"
"Yes, exactly. Look, Victor, when you look at the cases that the Southern District has, even though we in the public know about, you can see why there's a potential political threat to at least people around Donald Trump," the attorney continued. "Rudy Giuliani, Lev Parnas, Deutsche Bank where the president does his banking. Jeffrey Epstein's surviving co-conspirators. There are so many things happening there that could be a potential threat. It's almost impossible to see this as anything other than a political takeover."