Now that Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker is on the record after having testified before Congress on Friday, Democrats could bust him for lying.
Former Republican congressional spokesman Kurt Bardella told MSNBC’s Joy Reid on Saturday that the hearing with Whitaker will give Democrats and investigators a way to “cross-check” the acting attorney general’s claims.
“Now they have Whitaker on record saying yes or no to certain things. They are going to cross reference that. They’re going to examine that. They’re going to go — every time they have an investigation now, every time they talk to a new witness, get a new document, a new e-mail, they’re going to cross-check that with what Whitaker said under oath or didn’t say under oath,” Bardella said.
Matthew Whitaker’s congressional testimony could come back to haunt him. #ctl #p2 #amjoy pic.twitter.com/fXewDUwTKQ
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) February 9, 2019
You learn almost as much from what witnesses are willing to tell you and not tell you. And what they don’t tell you really serves as almost a guided missile for investigators to go, oh, there’s something there. If you have nothing to hide, you’re willing to talk. And if you’re being so shifty and you’re obfuscating and you’re avoiding direct yes and no questions as Whitaker did all afternoon yesterday, that tells investigators this is where we need to focus our attention. This is where we need to look at documents and emails and talk to other people because now they have Whitaker on record saying yes or no to certain things. They are going to cross reference that. They’re going to examine that. They’re going to go — every time that they have an investigation now, every time they talk to a new witness, get a new document, a new e-mail, they’re going to cross-check that with what Whitaker said under oath or didn’t say under oath and then they’re going to bring him back and say, you know, it’s interesting, maybe we’ll bring you back for a deposition and ask you why did you say this on this day but it turns out this document over here says something completely different. He’s going to be held accountable the way.
At least one member of the House Judiciary Committee believes Matthew Whitaker lied under oath during his congressional testimony on Friday.
According to CNN, Democratic Rep. Steve Cohen thinks Whitaker lied when he told the committee that he didn’t talk to Donald Trump about Robert Mueller’s special counsel investigation.
To folks who have been paying attention, it’s hard to believe that Trump never discussed the special counsel probe with Whitaker, especially given the fact that it was central to his decision to name him acting attorney general.
Now that Democrats and investigators have a list of claims and non-claims Whitaker made under oath, they will be better able to hold him and the president accountable.
Matthew Whitaker took a victory lap at Trump Hotel following his congressional testimony on Friday, but his celebration could be short-lived.
Follow Sean Colarossi on Facebook and Twitter