Donald Trump’s a man of mystery. How much of his nonsense does he believe? Is he a brilliant grifter or just stupid? The answers to these questions are probably somewhere in between, but one man who got to knew him way to well than he’d perhaps have liked thinks he has the answer to one of the most maddening questions about him: Does Trump really think he won re-election in 2020 or is he just full of it?
Bill Barr doesn't buy the defense that Trump was just exercising his First Amendment right about the 2020 election, predicts Trump wouldn't do well under cross-examination and says he believes the former president “knew well that he had lost." pic.twitter.com/BXgQRsTEP6
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) August 3, 2023
That man is William Barr, attorney general for both George H.W. Bush and the big guy himself, who spoke with CNN’s Kaitlan Collins on Wednesday. At one point she asked him, point blank, “Do you think he knew that he lost the election?”
“Do I personally believe that?” replied Barr. “At first I wasn’t sure, but I have come to believe that he knew well that he had lost the election, and now what I think is important is the government has assumed the burden of proving that. The government in their indictment takes the position that he had actual knowledge that he had lost the election and the election wasn’t stolen through fraud. And they’re going to have to prove that beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Elsewhere during their chat, Barr discussed Trump’s third indictment, which he called “a legitimate case.” He did say that “unlike the document case, it’s going to have issues of proof. It’s a more complicated case.”
As for Trump’s possible line that he was just expressing his first amendment rights by spreading bull about nonexistent voter fraud and amping up his already powder keg supporters on Jan. 6, he’s a bit more confident with his take.
“I really don’t think that’s a valid argument,” Barr said. “As the indictment says, they’re not attacking his First Amendment right. He can say whatever he wants. He can even lie. He can tell people that the election was stolen when he knew better. But that does not protect you from entering into a conspiracy. All conspiracies involve speech, and all fraud involves speech. So free speech doesn’t give you the right to engage in a fraudulent conspiracy.”
Barr’s one of many lifelong conservatives who’ve turned on Trump (though, of course, he’ll still vote for him if he has to). At least he still has his rabid base, among them MAGA lawmaker Matt Gaetz, who dropped his absolutely bananas plan on how to sabotage Jack Smith’s case against him.
(Via Raw Story)