MSNBC host Joe Scarborough savaged Attorney General Bill Barr as a "political hack" on Friday's edition of "Morning Joe," saying Barr was among the worst attorneys general in history. Scarborough said Barr "shamed himself" with the release of a redacted version of the Mueller report this week and in doing has made himself "irrelevant to the discussion and to history."
Trump "is unfit to be President of the United States," the MSNBC host also said. "And anybody who suggests otherwise has not read the report."
JOE SCARBOROUGH: A lot more questions still out there than answers. It was fascinating. Yesterday was fascinating. I think really the most remarkable thing about yesterday was the fact that a man who had had the respect of attorneys on both sides of the aisle over the past 30, 40 years, Attorney General Barr humiliated himself, shamed himself by just a pathetic performance. I’m not so sure that he didn’t do that — I’m not so sure he didn’t do that to gain actually the sort of notoriety he got yesterday. He took the heat from Donald Trump. And you’ll notice yesterday half of the talk was about what Barr did and a lot of pundits couldn’t focus long enough on what Donald Trump did.
Dan Balz from 'The Washington Post' summed it up fairly well: "The 448-page document is replete with evidence of repeated lying by public officials and others, of the President urging them not to tell the truth, of the President seeking to shut down the investigation, of a Trump campaign hoping to benefit politically from Russian hacking and leaks of information damaging to its opponent, and of a White House in chaos and operating under abnormal rules."
Now, Willie, the politician in me says that the Democrats need to keep their head down, focus on, you know, issues that are going to matter around the dinner table of Americans and just win the election in 2020 if they want to get rid of a man who obviously is unfit to be President of the United States. But you see, here's the rub -- they also have a constitutional responsibility, a constitutional responsibility to follow the rule of law. And this Mueller report documents explicitly that he obstructed justice. And Robert Mueller even said in the report, of course, William Barr lied. That's just what he does now. But he said in the report, listen, I can't come to this conclusion, Congress, this has to be up to you.
So the Democrats have a choice, are they going to play it safe, are they going to do what polls would tell you will actually get Donald Trump removed from office in an election or will they begin the impeachment proceeding proceedings that this Mueller report suggests Donald Trump deserves? He is unfit to be President of the United States, and anybody who suggests otherwise has not read the report.
He is, as Justice Rehnquist once wrote, wretching words from their proper context. That's exactly what Barr did yesterday like any political hack would do. He is not an attorney general in the common context of the word, he is a political hack. John Heilemann, another thing that yesterday establishes is that when this presidency is over, John Mitchell will not be sitting alone as the worst attorney general in modern American political history. He will be side by side by William Barr.
I want to say, though, how ridiculous for Barr to try to excuse Donald Trump’s obstruction of justice, for Barr to try to excuse Donald Trump running around telling people to fire the special counsel, telling people to lie to investigators, all the things he did, because he was angry, he was frustrated because of political enemies.
My gosh, listen, I voted to impeach Bill Clinton twice. One on obstruction of justice or abuse of power. What Bill Clinton was charged for, I mean, again, we’re talking about lying before a grand jury, lying in a deposition about his personal life, so pales in comparison to what Lindsey Graham, who prosecuted that case in the Senate, to what Lindsey Graham now excuses every day of the week. It is shameful. And Republicans like myself were going after Bill Clinton from day one. So that’s no excuse. What about Mitch McConnell before Barack Obama even got elected president of the United States saying that his only focus was making Barack Obama a one-term president? They were going after — I mean, what Barr said, it was akin to a mother saying, 'Please, forgive Joey for not turning in his homework. The dog ate it.' No excuse at all.
Why don't we move beyond Barr because he's made himself really irrelevant to the discussion and to history? He's now a hack of Donald Trump and that is how history will paint him. Let's talk about the Mueller report, what we know about it so far. There are still redacted parts that need to be unredacted. But talk about the Mueller report, what you saw in it, what stood out and what Congress has to work with now moving forward.