Barr: House Democrats creating 'public spectacle' with Mueller testimony

Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrGOP eager for report on alleged FBI surveillance abuse DOJ watchdog won't let witnesses submit written feedback on investigation into Russia probe: report Bill Clinton advises Trump to ignore impeachment: 'You got hired to do a job' MORE in a new interview blasted House Democrats for seeking to put on a "public spectacle" with former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerSpeier says impeachment inquiry shows 'very strong case of bribery' by Trump Gowdy: I '100 percent' still believe public congressional hearings are 'a circus' Comey: Mueller 'didn't succeed in his mission because there was inadequate transparency' MORE's scheduled appearance before Congress next week.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpButtigieg surges ahead of Iowa caucuses Biden leads among Latino Democrats in Texas, California Kavanaugh hailed by conservative gathering in first public speech since confirmation MORE's top law enforcement official told The Associated Press in a new interview Monday that he would support Mueller if the former FBI chief “doesn’t want to subject himself” to testimony before the House Judiciary Committee on July 17. 

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Barr also reportedly told the AP that the Department of Justice (DOJ) would seek to block efforts by House Democrats to subpoena members of Mueller's investigative team, which includes 19 attorneys as well as other personnel.

Mueller, who is under subpoena, has not provided any indication that he plans to bow out of the highly anticipated congressional testimony, which is expected to be one of the largest spectacles on Capitol Hill in recent history.

The committee subpoenaed the reluctant former special counsel to testify after weeks of negotiations and after Mueller publicly stated that he does not wish to testify before Congress.

Mueller has maintained that he will not go beyond the four corners of his report.

House Democrats are eager to press Mueller on the 10 episodes of possible obstruction of justice by Trump as laid out in the report.

The Mueller report says the investigation did not find sufficient evidence to conclude there was coordination between members of the Trump campaign and Russia, but the special counsel did not make a determination either way as to whether the president obstructed justice.

"If we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so," Mueller said in late May during his first public remarks about the probe.

Barr, along with then-Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinDemocrats ask judge to force McGahn to comply with subpoena Democrats ask court to force DOJ's hand on Mueller grand jury materials Washington celebrates diplomacy — and baseball — at Meridian Ball MORE and other DOJ officials, ultimately made the decision that the report did not include sufficient evidence to charge the president with a crime — a call House Democrats say is theirs to make.

Trump and his GOP allies celebrated the announcement, touting that the investigation proved there was no collusion and no obstruction. 

Barr's involvement in the determination and his handling of the release of a redacted version of the Mueller report in April made him a target for Democrats, with some accusing him of being a political hack and calling for his resignation.

Republicans, meanwhile, have celebrated Barr. And many are eagerly waiting to grill the former FBI chief on the origins of the Russia probe and allegations of bias against the president among the top brass at the FBI and DOJ.