Barr: Trump’s Jan. 6 Case Doesn’t Violate First Amendment

Barr: Trump’s Jan. 6 Case Doesn’t Violate First Amendment

The Jan. 6 case against Donald Trump does not run “afoul of the First Amendment,” former Attorney General Bill Barr told CBS’s “Face The Nation” on Sunday, pushing back on the former president’s legal argument concerning his most recent indictment over his attempts to overturn the 2020 election results.

While special counsel Jack Smith’s latest case against Trump is a “challenging” one, it is also “legitimate,” Barr said, explaining that it is not based on what Trump constantly was saying after the election, but on additional elements that amount to conspiring.

“This is not a question of what his subjective idea was as to whether he won or lost,” Barr said. “They’re saying, ‘What you were saying consistently — the stuff you were spouting — you knew was wrong.’ … If that was all it was about, I would be concerned on First Amendment front. But they go beyond that.”

“The other elements were the substitution of bogus panels — that were not authorized panels — to claim that they had alternative votes,” Trump’s former attorney general said. “And … that was clearly wrong, and the certifications they signed were false.”

Barr continued, “Then pressuring the vice president to use that as a pretext to adopt the Trump votes and reject the Biden votes or even to delay it — it really doesn’t matter whether it’s to delay it or to adopt it or to send it to the House of Representatives. You have to remember, a conspiracy crime is completed at the time it’s agreed to and the first steps are taken.”

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