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Good morning fellow law nerds! I'm a little late to the live tweeting this morning because the Senate site wasn't working but HERE I AM #TeamLegal
Today is a lot of witnesses talking about why Barr should or should not be confirmed.

Right now Marc Morial President and CEO of Urban League is up now
A few thoughts from yesterday:

Barr is basically guaranteed confirmation unless something wild happens because there's not the votes to block him. Knowing that Barr's job was to reasonable and non-confrontational yesterday. He had to come off as an adult in the administration.
Morial is getting to the heart of Barr's record on civil rights and why he will be so dangerous if confirmed.

In a nutshell: Barr thinks Sessions is the bees knees when it comes to federal civil rights enforcement
Barr's confirmation would exacerbate this country's civil rights crisis, Morial testifies
The degree to which Barr lives for locking up as many people of color as is possible is as regressive as it is fascist. The connection between Barr's philosophy on mass incarceration and the administration's zero-tolerance anti-immigration policy is a recipe for disaster
Barr lead an effort in Virginia to abolish parole. I mean C'MON MAN
Former H.W. Bush speechwriter Mary Kate Cary up now in support of Barr's nomination. She was also Barr's speechwriter

Barr plays the bagpipes and is always a gentleman testifies Cary
There is a great essay to write about the continuing memory-holing and re-writing of terrible GOP domestic policy during the Trump years
I mean yes this is a constant of the right, but this revisionism is a full-on marketing effort within all three branches of government
This evolution where women testify that their prior bosses were totally not rapey is a pretty amazing Kavanaugh-Trump legacy
Prof. Neil Kinkopf now testifying about Barr's legal theories. Reminder that yesterday Barr testified that despite decades of legal experience, including a prior stint as AG, he's barely even heard of the emoluments clause of the Constitution. And birthright citizenship.
I personally find in fascinating when esteemed legal minds and a nominee for Attorney General are totes fuzzy on the four-corners of the Constitution.
Kinkopf gets to a point that was missed yesterday which is that under Barr's theory of presidential power would render A LOT of federal agencies unconstitutional
Jonathan Turley now up to testify on behalf of Barr but you know, dudes gonna dude for dudes
Turley speaking about Barr's constitutional aptitude which again apparently does not include grasping the 14th Amendment
Nobody loves to hear Turley speak more than Turley
Turley is still speaking apparently
Turley just called Barr a law nerd and declared himself a law nerd.

Also again this is a Law Nerd that didn't know the Presidential Records Act.

Or the emoluments clause.

OR birthright citizenship.

We *LITERALLY* have podcast episodes on Every. Single. One. Of. Those. Issues.
Rev. Sharon Washington Risher up now to testify against Barr. She's from NC and testifying about the personal impact of gun violence
Rev. Risher about losing family in the Charleston church shooting perpetrated by Dylann Roof. This is rough stuff
Another GOP legacy is the list of witnesses testifying against Republican nominees because they have lost family and friends to preventable gun violence.
Chuck Canterbury, head of the Police Union, here to vigorously support the Barr nomination.

The Police Union.
Witness testimony ends and Graham takes the gavel and tells Rev. Risher she should take comfort in the fact that the GOP and Barr is going to push red flag laws
Graham asking Turley about Barr's Mueller statements and it is clear that Turley's entire job is to constitutionally cape for Barr
Graham asks NAACP president and CEO Derrick Johnson if it was a good thing that he [Graham] voted to confirm AGs Holder and Lynch.

Just going to note again that Graham *REFUSES* to use AG before naming Holder and Lynch but has no issue doing so with Sessions
Graham then cuts off Johnson's answer to say that he's just mad about this administration.

I mean yes we all are but this is some weirdly aggressive race stuff happening with Graham here.
Graham now mad that the NAACP scores the GOP senators poorly and I mean

Graham just said that "I hope that because I disagree with your scorecard you don't think I'm a racist."

Johnson is not having this. Explains that the scoring isn't based on political parties and mentions that many Black voters were GOP prior to the Voting Rights Act. But when conservatives are opposing civil rights measures 🤷🏻‍♀️
Graham doing an excellent job explaining racial party politics at the moment and he doesn't even have a clue
Graham attacking the NAACP like this is really something and should be a part of every DNC ad in 2020
Graham did a very amateur thing here by giving the Urban League and NAACP an open mic here.

They are detailing the ways Sessions/Trump turned 180 in voter ID litigation.

Elections have consequences, Graham says

Enforcing civil rights laws should election neutral, response
Graham wants the NAACP and Urban League to bless the DoJ here and is perplexed why they won't.

He is stepping in all of it and apparently nobody around him has noticed?
Wow that was AN EXCHANGE
Feinstein up and calls Turley Barr's defense counsel and she's not wrong
Feinstein drawing the distinction between Barr being qualified based on his resume from Barr's vision of the Constitution, especially Barr's belief that the "president alone" is the executive branch.

As a self-proclaimed law nerd Turley should have closed this better for Barr
Turley jumps in now because he can't help himself
I'm still struck by Graham demanding a better score by the NAACP without actually doing the work of supporting racial justice policies. That is *peak* whiteness
Durbin is up and invites gun violence victims to work with the police union on reform measures and I mean sure but also how about we *stop* telling people of color they should work with law enforcement too
That moment kind of encapsulates my feels about Durbin
Durbin is back on his mea culpa tour for his past votes on mandatory minimums and three-strikes and all of it.
Jumped out for just a second to come back to Marc Morial of the Urban League to say that Shelby County v Holder will go down with Plessy as a terrible decision and he is absolutely right
The rest of the hearing has taken a more subdued tone now that Graham is done white-duding all over the place
We are taking a 'comfort' break now before returning to witness Q&A. Blackburn will be up soon so let's see if she steps in more whiteness than Graham did
We are back and Cornyn is up to talk about how great cops are and how awesome Barr's approach to mass incarceration is
Turley is now doing the "both sides" Tango with the Mueller investigation
Hirono is up and focusing on both the unitary executive and voting rights. She does a good job with her time in drawing out testimony that she will use for drafting follow-up questions. It's like she takes her job seriously
Another take away from today's hearing so far is WHAT A DIFFERENCE it makes to try and confirm a new Attorney General after the old one has done a 180 on defending civil rights laws
To be clear, there are votes to confirm Barr. But it's just so much harder for Barr to dodge these issues
This is a very important voting rights conversation happening right now in part because it is laying the foundation for future voting rights legislation.

Johnson is laying out a legislative roadmap for Hirono here
That testimony was just great because it navigated through all of Shelby County and the VRA for an update.
Blackburn is up right now and wants to talk digital privacy rights but I'm going out on a limb here and guessing she doesn't mean digital privacy rights of abortion patients or providers given her cozy relationship with the anti-choice Planned Parenthood "baby parts" smear
Blackburn is definitely not going to ask the NAACP or Urban League any questions because maybe someone talked to her ahead of time
Morial just gave a master class on the role of consent decrees in making policing better
I used to give Tim Pawlenty a lot of grief for being a charisma vacuum but really that prize goes to Ted Cruz
The testimony right now is about what a great dad Barr is and how this Washington lawyer is a man of the people

I also have a standing objection to the use of "law nerd" in these proceedings
Blumenthal now and presses Turley on Turley's statement that Barr said he agrees a sitting president can be indicted [spoiler: Barr doesn't. He wouldn't agree to this on the record yesterday]

Turley now acknowledges he has no idea what Barr's position is here
That was kind of amazing for the lolz
Coons up now then the hearing will close
Coons gives Kinkopf and opportunity to expound on Barr's 'unitary executive' theory and what it would look like in real life and it is everything for my nerdy, wonky, soul
Blackburn gavels the hearing closed. Record remains open until 5pm on January 22nd for follow-up written questions
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