Attorney General William Barr’s statements to the press before the redacted Mueller report on the Russia investigation was released to the public made him appear as though he was a counselor to the president rather the attorney general, Fox News anchor Chris Wallace said Thursday.
Barr offered a staunch defense of President Trump on Thursday morning during the press conference where he previewed the report’s findings and explained why he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein concluded that the president had not obstructed justice.
He also said it was important to consider the “context” for Trump’s actions during the past two years.
“President Trump faced an unprecedented situation. As he entered into office and sought to perform his responsibilities as President, federal agents and prosecutors were scrutinizing his conduct before and after taking office and the conduct of some of his associates,” Barr said. “At the same time, there was relentless speculation in the news media about the President’s personal culpability. Yet, as he said from the beginning, there was, in fact, no collusion.”
Reacting to the news conference, Wallace told "America's Newsroom" Barr "seemed almost to be acting as the counselor for the defense, the counselor for the president."
"The Attorney General seemed almost to be acting as the counselor for the defense, the counselor for the president, rather than the attorney general, talking about his motives, talking about his anger, his feeling that this was unfair," he told anchors Bill Hemmer and Sandra Smith. “Really, as I say, making a case for the president.”
Wallace went on to say that Democrats will come down hard on the portions regarding obstruction laid out in the report.
The Department of Justice released the redacted report to lawmakers and the public soon after the press conference.