May 2, 2019

House Democrats give Barr one more chance to turn over full Mueller report

House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) told reporters Thursday that Democrats would make "one more good faith attempt to negotiate" with the Justice Department to turn over the full, unredacted Mueller report, before moving to hold Attorney General Bill Barr in contempt of Congress.

The big picture: Barr didn't show up to his appearance before the committee on Thursday after Democrats voted to allow staff lawyers extra time to question him about the Mueller report — leaving Nadler to speak for 16 minutes before an empty chair with Barr's nameplate. The Justice Department also ignored the deadline for a subpoena to turn over the full report by Wednesday evening.

  • Nadler said he would focus getting ahold of the full Mueller report before issuing a subpoena for Barr to testify. AP notes that a contempt vote by the committee would send a criminal referral to the U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia — a branch of the Justice Department that would likely defend the administration.
  • As Axios has previously reported, Trump's White House appears to have figured out the secret of congressional oversight: there's not much Democrats can do if they say no to everything. In all the most recent examples of an administration official being held in contempt of Congress, the case has fizzled.

The other side: House Judiciary Ranking Member Doug Collins (R-Ga.) slammed Nadler for his "ludicrous demands," claiming: "The reason Bill Barr isn't here today is because the Democrats decided they didn't want him here today ... Chairman Nadler sabotaged his own hearing."

What to watch: Nadler said he and the Justice Department are "firming up the date" for special counsel Mueller to testify before the committee, hopefully before May 15.

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Situational awareness

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Catch up on today's biggest news:

  1. Scoop: New White House personnel chief tells Cabinet liaisons to target Never Trumpers
  2. Trump misrepresents 2020 Russia briefing as Democratic "misinformation"
  3. Bernie Sanders takes aim at Bloomberg: "Trump will chew him up and spit him out"
  4. Nearly half of Republicans support pardoning Roger Stone
  5. Scoop: Lyft acquires cartop advertising startup Halo Cars

Sanders takes aim at Bloomberg: "Trump will chew him up and spit him out"

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Bernie Sanders told CBS "60 Minutes" that he was surprised by Mike Bloomberg's lackluster performance at Wednesday's Democratic debate.

What he's saying: "If that's what happened in a Democratic debate, you know, I think it's quite likely that Trump will chew him up and spit him out."

Scoop: Lyft acquires cartop advertising startup Halo Cars

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Lyft has acquired Halo Cars, a small startup that lets ride-hailing drivers earn money via ad displays mounted atop their cars. Lyft confirmed the deal but declined to share any details.

Why it matters: Ride-hailing companies are increasingly eyeing additional ways to generate revenue, and Lyft rival Uber has been quietly testing a partnership with New York-based Cargo that gives it a cut of the advertising revenue, as I previously reported.