Walton’s impudent gripe may earn him media plaudits, but the stubborn facts belie its content.
First, it was line prosecutors who redacted the Mueller report, not Barr himself. Second, the redactions were made in consultation with lawyers on Mueller’s special counsel team — which disproves any alleged legerdemain or political intent on Barr’s part.
Most important, a joint statement last May by DOJ spokeswoman Kerri Kupec and special counsel spokesman Peter Carr made clear that there was “no conflict” between the statements made by Barr and Mueller with respect to the underlying legal question at the time: Both publicly stated that Mueller never concluded that he would have found Trump had obstructed justice but for a DOJ guideline against indicting a sitting president. Put simply, Barr and Mueller were in complete lockstep.
The judge has brought shame to the bench by combining disinformation with an overheated, ad-hominem rebuke. Indeed, if there is anyone in this saga who “made a calculated attempt to influence public discourse” and demonstrated a remarkable “lack of candor” in doing so, it wasn’t Barr. It was the judge.