Judiciary Democrat calls for House to pursue impeachment of Barr

A Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday called for Attorney General William BarrBill BarrThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: DC's Bowser says protesters and nation were 'assaulted' in front of Lafayette Square last month; Brazil's Bolsonaro, noted virus skeptic, tests positive for COVID-19 FBI Director Wray warns of Chinese hacking, espionage threats against American companies Executing four white men won't erase death penalty racism MORE to be impeached, alleging that he is not following the rule of law.

Rep. Steve CohenStephen (Steve) Ira CohenPelosi throws cold water on impeaching Barr Justice Department officials say decisions are politicized Congress must act on police reform, don't let opponents divert the conversation MORE (D-Tenn.), an outspoken progressive on the panel, advocated for Barr to be impeached during a hearing on the politicization of the Justice Department (DOJ).

"We should pursue impeachment of Bill Barr because he is reigning terror on the rule of law," Cohen said.

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Another House Democrat, Rep. Bill PascrellWilliam (Bill) James PascrellNew Jersey incumbents steamroll progressive challengers in primaries The Hill's Campaign Report: Primary Day in New Jersey What to watch in New Jersey's primaries on Tuesday MORE (N.J.), later endorsed Cohen's call for impeachment on Twitter.

Two Justice Department officials were testifying at the hearing that the agency has grown politicized under Barr, alleging that the top brass at the DOJ has taken in political considerations when handling cases against allies of the president. 

Prior to his impeachment remarks, Cohen slammed Circuit Court Judge Neomi Rao, a former White House official whom Trump appointed to the court last year, who was part of the federal appeals court panel that ordered Wednesday an end to the government's case against former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Cohen hit Rao for her past rulings that repealed regulations imposed by the Obama administration, including those on automobile exhaust, saying she does what "Trump likes best," which is jeopardize clean water by giving into the pressure of industry, profits and pollution.

"Who is supposed to look into the executive branch when what they do is not in the interest of justice? It should’ve been Judge Rao," Cohen said.

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"The other way to do it is impeachment. Impeachment is the process by which the Justice Department and executive branch are not pursuing the interest of justice," he continued.

Then Cohen turned to focus on Barr, arguing that he should be impeached and removed from office, claiming that "it is questionable what he is doing."

At the start of the hearing, a DOJ spokeswoman announced that Barr has agreed to testify before the committee in late July, where Democrats are expected to press him on a series of high-profile decisions, including the DOJ handling of the case against longtime Trump ally Roger StoneRoger Jason StoneRoger Stone asks court to delay prison sentence over coronavirus concerns Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers to address alarming spike in coronavirus cases Judge gives Stone an extra 14 days to report to prison MORE, Flynn, as well as other matters.

Updated at 4:05 p.m.