On Friday, former Trump Attorney General William Barr said that the indictment against the former president was “the epitome of the abuse of prosecutorial power” because it “would not be brought against anyone else.”
Barr’s comments came during a discussion with Larry Kudlow, who served as the Director of the National Economic Council during the Trump administration.
“They are going after the man, not a crime,” Barr said. “And the legal theory, frankly, is pathetically weak. The case is held together by chicken wire and paper clips and rubber bands. It’s a lousy case. And it’s a shame. It’s a shameful episode in our history, where this local prosecutor is trying to affect the political process by bringing this case.”
“They take this misdemeanor, which also has a problem with the statute of limitations, and they try to shoehorn it into a felony by claiming that the reason the document was falsified, the documents were falsified, was to cover up another crime,” Barr said. “In this case, they’re assuming that the payments were a campaign finance violation, because they were effectively a contribution to the Trump campaign.”
“I can tell you that’s not the law. I don’t think that’s how the Justice Department would view it,” he continued. “It wasn’t brought by the Justice Department during the Trump administration. But even after the Trump administration left, there was no inhibition on the Department of Justice to bring this federal claim if they thought it was valid. And it was never brought.”
Kudlow asked Barr if Democrats could be trying to take Trump out of the 2024 presidential race because they are afraid of him.
“I think there’s some Democrats who would like to drive him from the political scene completely because of Trump derangement syndrome, and they consider him very dangerous and so forth,” Barr said. “But I actually think that — most Democrats who get involved in this kind of thing, they actually want to run against Trump, because they think — whether they’re right or wrong — they think they can beat him.”
“And so they are actually trying to help him by generating the support of his base,” Barr continued. “And they feel that that will generate their own turnout. And so they’re essentially, I think, playing for a repeat of the 2020 election.”