Former FBI official praises Barr for 'professional' press conference

A former FBI official is praising Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrPapadopoulos on AG's new powers: 'Trump is now on the offense' House Democrats must insist that Robert Mueller testifies publicly Why Mueller may be fighting a public hearing on Capitol Hill MORE for his press conference before releasing special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump orders more troops to Mideast amid Iran tensions Trump: Democrats just want Mueller to testify for a 'do-over' Graham: Mueller investigation a 'political rectal exam' MORE’s report.

“I wanted to commend AG Barr on his professional press conference,” Jeff Danik, now a manager member at consultant group Danik Solutions, told Hill.TV’s Buck Sexton during an interview on Thursday.

“This is a good indication that an adult was in the room today on the press conference,” Danik added.

Barr held a press conference Thursday morning before releasing the report to Congress. In his remarks, he repeatedly defended President TrumpDonald John TrumpPapadopoulos on AG's new powers: 'Trump is now on the offense' Pelosi uses Trump to her advantage Mike Pence delivers West Point commencement address MORE and explained why he did not find obstruction of justice based on Mueller's findings. Barr also emphasized that it was important to consider the "context" of Trump's actions, saying the president faced an “unprecedented situation” during the investigation. 

Barr faced heavy criticism for his remarks at the press conference. Democrats said Barr acted more like a defense lawyer for the president than the nation's attorney general.

“Barr is acting more like Trump’s defense attorney than the nation's Attorney General,” Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisSan Francisco police chief apologizes for raid on journalist's home Gillibrand seizes on abortion debate to jump-start campaign Senate Democrats to House: Tamp down the impeachment talk MORE (D-Calif.) tweeted following the news conference.

Top Democrats House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi uses Trump to her advantage Fake Pelosi video sparks fears for campaigns Trump goes scorched earth against impeachment talk MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerNo agreement on budget caps in sight ahead of Memorial Day recess Ex-White House photographer roasts Trump: 'This is what a cover up looked like' under Obama Pelosi: Trump 'is engaged in a cover-up' MORE (D-N.Y) also took issue with Barr’s characterization of the report.

"As we continue to review the report, one thing is clear: Attorney General Barr presented a conclusion that the president did not obstruct justice while Mueller's report appears to undercut that finding," they said in a joint statement on Thursday.

—Tess Bonn