‘Zero credibility’: Legal experts blast Bill Barr for 'espousing political conspiracy theories' in the midst of global pandemic

Attorney General Bill Barr is getting blasted for a highly-partisan interview he gave to Fox News. Barr’s role as the nation’s chief law enforcement officer is seen as sacrosanct by the American people, who believe the wall between the head of the Dept. of Justice and politics should never be cracked.


The AG attacked the press for waging a “jihad” against Trump’s promotion of an unproven malaria drug, hydroxychloroquine, to battle COVID-19, despite it not having been approved, or even appropriately tested for that purpose. And he described President Donald Trump’s early handling of the impending coronavirus pandemic as “statesman-like,” which is false. Numerous reports show Trump was far more aware of how fatal the coronavirus could be and just how much it could disrupt the globe.

“The politicization of decisions like hydroxychloroquine has been amazing to me,” Barr told Fox News host Laura Ingraham. “Before the president said anything about it, there was ‘fair and balanced’ coverage of this very promising drug, and the fact that it had such a long track record that the risks were pretty well known, and as soon as he said something positive about it, the media’s been on a jihad to discredit the drug. It’s been quite strange.”

“It’s very disappointing,” Barr also said, “because I think the president went out at the beginning of [the coronavirus pandemic] and really was statesmanlike, trying to bring people together, working with all the governor. Keeping his patience as he as he got these snarky, gotcha questions from the White House media pool and the stridency of the partisan attacks on him has gotten higher and higher.”

That’s false. The media has worked to inform the public that the drug can be dangerous, and even deadly, when inappropriately used. And reporters have tried to let the public know that reports of the drug’s supposed success in treating the deadly virus has been mostly anecdotal.

Here’s one portion of the interview:

Many legal experts are furious.

CNN Legal Analyst, former federal and state prosecutor:

Former SDNY Federal Prosecutor:

Attorney and commentator:

Managing editor, Lawfareblog:

Attorney, columnist, pundit:

CNN Chief National Security Correspondent:

MSNBC Justice & Security Analyst, former DOJ spokesman:

Former Justice Department prosecutor:

Conservative think tank scholar:

Professor at the U.S. Naval War College:

Supreme Court reporter for The Economist:

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