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Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) was accused of sexism and bullying during his questioning of former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates during a hearing Wednesday regarding the origins of the FBI’s counterintelligence probe of the 2016 Trump campaign.
At one point, after Yates hedged a number of her answers, Graham interrupted in an attempt to get her back on track.
When he did, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) broke in and accused the chairman of berating Yates because she is a woman.
“Mr. Chairman, let her answer the question. Just because it’s a woman testifying doesn’t mean she has to be cut off,” Leahy said.
“Yeah, thanks a lot, Sen. Leahy, I really appreciate that. You’re very constructive,” Graham responded curtly.
The South Carolina Republican continued to ask Yates several more questions before relinquishing to other members.
The outburst by Leahy, as well as the sexism accusation, follows a familiar Democrat pattern of interrupting hearings and making baseless claims against Republicans, including allegations of racism and bigotry.
“You saw his affect yesterday. He was disrespectful, spoke over top of every one of us, in particular, he spoke over women,” Rep. Madeleine Dean of Pennsylvania told MSNBC.
She went on to accuse him of being a racist, citing nothing of substance except that he did not show up for the hearing with any “person of color.”
“He was flanked by at least 10 staffers, not a person of color among them, and he couldn’t identify that we have systemic racism in this country,” she said. “Maybe that’s because he’s living in a bubble. I just have to tell you, it was so disrespectful the way he approached Congress, the way he approached our committee.”
Women Dem Reps go after Barr, accuse him of being disrespectful, sexist and ‘hostile witness’ at hearing https://t.co/OmB2VPgExE
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) July 30, 2020
During her questioning of Barr, Dean repeatedly cut him off and refused to let him answer. That is different in terms of style from the way Graham was interacting with Yates; the South Carolina chairman was trying to get her to answer the questions he was asking, not prevent her from doing so.
Inject this clip of Barr laughing straight into my veins pic.twitter.com/MapMq9cyf5
— Will Chamberlain (@willchamberlain) July 28, 2020
In addition, Barr was not “flanked by 10 staffers,” as pictorial and video evidence from the hearing indicates.
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) July 29, 2020
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) banged the same drum in a subsequent interview with CNN, accusing the attorney general of trying to avoid questions when, in reality, she refused to allow him to answer.
Most of the panel’s Democrats focused on Barr’s handling of the defense of the Portland federal courthouse, the recommendation that longtime Trump associate Roger Stone receive a lighter sentence, and the Justice Department’s decision to drop its case against former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
The Washington Free Beacon put together a montage of Democratic committee members refusing to allow Barr to answer their questions by “reclaiming” their time.
SEE HIGHLIGHTS OF SALLY YATES’ HEARING
- Sally Yates admits Comey went ‘rogue’; Graham’s opening shots at Senate hearing make her squirm
- Dem Senator, with no evidence, accuses Sen Graham of mistreating Sally Yates because she’s a woman
- Fiery Hawley comes hard at Yates: ‘If this doesn’t call for a cleaning house in DOJ, FBI, I don’t know what does’
- Sen. Kennedy asks Yates, if he does what she did, ‘am I like a rock, only dumber?’
- Sally Yates tries to deny Trump campaign was surveilled, Sen. Cruz helps clear it up for her
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