Attorney General William Barr said House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) is a “real class act” after Nadler refused to grant him a five-minute break during the several hours of questions from the Judiciary Committee hearing on Tuesday.
“I’m sorry, Mr. Chairman, could I — could we take a five-minute break,” Barr asked Nadler during a transition between committee member questioning.
Nadler screamed “No!” in response.
“I waited 45 [minutes], an hour for you this morning, I haven’t had lunch. I’d like to take a five-minute break,” Barr fires back.
Barr was referring to the delay start of the hearing due to Nadler being involved in a minor car accident on his way to Capitol Hill early Tuesday morning. It was initially scheduled to take place at 10 a.m., but didn’t begin until 15 minutes past 11 a.m.
Nadler insisted that the hearing was “almost finished.”
“Mr. Attorney General, we are almost finished. We are going to be finished in a few minutes. We can certainly take a break but,” Nadler stated.
Barr shot back at Nadler, “You’re a real class act, Mr. Chairman. A real class act.”
Nadler insisted that Barr could take a break after taking just a few more questions from Democrats.
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), the ranking Republican on the committee chimed in and blasted Nadler for denying Barr’s request.
“He wants a break now,” Jordan said. “And you just mentioned rudeness. I think we’re seeing it on display. Let’s let the attorney general have a break.”
After hesitating, Nadler finally caved and granted Barr’s request for a five-minute break. The hearing would continue for about 15 more minutes following the break.
House Judiciary Committee Democrats use their first-ever hearing with Barr to berate him, accusing the attorney general of politicizing the Justice Department to aid Trump’s re-election campaign. During the combative five hours hearing, Democrats would use their five-minute allotment of time to make partisan statements, repeatedly cutting off Barr from responding to their questions while interrupting him by shouting, “Reclaiming my time!
“This is a hearing,” Barr said in frustration at one point during the hearing after being interrupted a few words into his answer more than a dozen times. “I thought I was the one who was supposed to be heard?”
The attorney general requested for some time to answer the questions posed to him, but Nadler repeatedly denied the request. This promoted Republicans to cede some of their allotted time for Barr to respond.
Jordan, at one point in the hearing would question Nadler on why he was allowing Democratic members to continuously interrupt Barr from letting him respond to questions being asked.
“For months you’ve tried to get the attorney general to come. He’s here. Why don’t you let him speak?” Jordan protested. “Why don’t you let him answer the questions? Time after time If you want the attorney general to come at least let him answer the questions and the accusations made against him. Time after time you refuse to let the attorney general of the United States answer the questions posed to him.”