(NBC News) House Speaker Nancy Pelosi leveled a serious charge Thursday against Attorney General William Barr.
Pelosi told reporters that Barr lied to Congress last month when discussing his handling of the Mueller report, and that constitutes a crime.
“It wasn’t about who wrote the letter and how he characterized the letter. That’s interesting. But what is deadly serious about it is that the Attorney General of the United States of America was not telling the truth to the Congress of the United States. That’s a crime,” Pelosi said.
Pressed on her claim, the speaker said anyone else engaged in Barr’s behavior would be guilty of committing a crime.
A Justice Department spokesperson issued a quick response, saying “the baseless attack on the attorney general is reckless, irresponsible and false.”
Pelosi’s comments came shortly after Barr refused to attend a House Judiciary Committee meeting to offer more testimony on the Mueller report.
The Justice Department said that the plan by the Democratic members of the committee to have attorneys question Barr was unacceptable, and that he would only appear if questioning was limited to members of Congress.