Ted Lieu joined the criticism of William Barr, weighing in on the Attorney General’s remarks about the FBI. Barr is already facing backlash over comments about sedition.
The Democratic congressman responded to Barr’s characterization of FBI agents within the chain of command, suggesting that they gain their legitimacy from the Attorney General.
“Dear Bill Barr of Justice Department : NO, the authority and legitimacy of FBI agents do not come from you,” Lieu tweeted.
Dear Bill Barr of @TheJusticeDept: NO, the authority and legitimacy of @FBI agents do not come from you. Their authority comes from the Constitution. FBI agents swore an oath to the Constitution, not to you.
Also, we are not a Banana Republic. Stop acting like a tinpot dictator. https://t.co/3Z0lnIHXKH
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) September 17, 2020
“Their authority comes from the Constitution. FBI agents swore an oath to the Constitution, not to you. Also, we are not a Banana Republic. Stop acting like a tinpot dictator.”
Barr had said “These people are agents of the attorney general … whose agents do you think you are? I don’t say this in a pompous way. But that is the chain of authority and legitimacy in the Department of Justice.”
Lieu followed up with a later tweet, sharing comments from former Attorney General Eric Holder.
“Dear Everyone at the Justice Department: A reminder that you work for the American people,” he wrote.
“You had to take one oath before you could work at the Department of Justice. And that oath was not to Bill Barr, it was to the Constitution of the United States.”
Darragh Roche is a journalist covering U.S. politics and media