William Barr agrees to testify before House Judiciary Committee after Nadler issues subpoena threat

The attorney general is once again under fire after federal prosecutor Geoffrey Berman was terminated from his post

Published June 24, 2020 8:36PM (EDT)

Attorney General William Barr (Getty Images)
Attorney General William Barr (Getty Images)

This article originally appeared on AlterNet.

U.S. Attorney General William Barr has come under fire from his critics once again — this time, over the firing of federal prosecutor Geoffrey Berman from his position in the Southern District of New York. And Barr, according to Politico, will testify before the House Judiciary Committee on July 28.

Politico's Natasha Bertrand, on June 24, tweeted, "Barr will testify before House Judiciary on July 28th, per DOJ press sec. Nadler had been preparing a subpoena."

Earlier this month, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler had resisted calls to subpoena Barr, believing it would be a waste of time. But according to Politico reporters Kyle Cheney, Heather Caygle and Sarah Ferris, Nadler changed his mind when the Berman controversy heated up and was prepared to subpoena Barr if necessary.

"Nadler (D-NY) and Speaker Nancy Pelosi discussed the idea over the weekend and decided 'to be ready' in case Barr declined to show up to testify before the panel, according to Democratic sources familiar with their conversation," the Politico journalists reported.  "Pelosi informed her leadership team Monday night, saying on a private call that Nadler's panel was 'starting down the path' of subpoenaing Barr if necessary, according to Democratic sources. Nadler later confirmed the news."

According to Politico's reporters, "Pressure on Democrats to investigate Barr ramped up over the weekend due to Barr's abrupt effort to remove Manhattan's top federal prosecutor, Geoffrey Berman, who has been overseeing multiple investigations connected to President Donald Trump's business and associates. Barr initially said Berman had voluntarily stepped down, but Berman issued a subsequent statement denying Barr's suggestion and insisting he planned to remain in his post."

By Alex Henderson

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Alternet Democrats House Judiciary Committee Jerry Nadler Politics Republicans William Barr