Taken at face value, Barr’s arguments would render the president immune from liability for a wide range of clearly criminal acts.
[This] view yields absurd results. It would mean, among other things, that the president could literally get away with murder.
Most relevantly, 18 U.S.C. § 1512(c) says that “[w]hoever corruptly … obstructs, influences, or impedes any official proceeding, or attempts to do so, shall be fined … or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.” There is no way to read “whoever” in Section 1512(c) to mean “whoever except the president.”
Barr’s view—which would carve out a broad swath of criminal law from which the president would from now on be immune—goes beyond the range of reasonable disagreement that the Senate ought to tolerate when confirming an attorney general nominee.
BE THE FIRST TO KNOW
Receive daily updates in your inbox