Barr teases Pelosi over upcoming contempt vote: ‘Madam speaker, did you bring your handcuffs?’
William Barr is laughing all the way to the jail cell.
The embattled attorney general poked fun at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday, asking whether she had her “handcuffs” handy in an apparent jab at an upcoming vote on holding him in contempt of Congress.
“Madam Speaker, did you bring your handcuffs?” Barr “loudly” asked Pelosi after the two shook hands at a national peace officers memorial service held outside the U.S. Capitol, according to a bystander.
Predictably the dour duo from Morning Joe didn’t find it funny.
The bystander told the Daily News that Pelosi smiled and told Barr that the House sergeant-at-arms was nearby should an arrest be necessary.
Barr didn’t respond but “chuckled and walked away,” the bystander said.
A spokeswoman for Barr did not return a request for comment.
Chuckles aside, Pelosi has made clear that the full House will vote on a resolution passed by the judiciary committee recommending that Barr be held in contempt over his refusal to release special counsel Robert Mueller’s full report despite several subpoenas.
The Democratically-controlled House is expected to pass the resolution.
Once held in contempt, Barr could face fines and even imprisonment under an obscure and little-used tactic known as “inherent contempt.”
The drastic maneuver would allow the House to have Barr arrested by the sergeant-at-arms.
The measure hasn’t been employed since the 1930s, but Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) floated the concept earlier this month while discussing ways to counteract the Trump administration’s stonewalling.
However, Pelosi has not seemed all that keen on the idea.
“We do have a jail in the basement of the Capitol, but if we were arresting all of the people in the administration, we would have an overcrowded jail situation,” Pelosi told reporters last week. “And I’m not for that.”
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