Reacting to Acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker’s highly combative and confrontational House Judiciary Committee hearing Friday, an MSNBC national-security analyst knocked Whitaker for treating the American public with “utter disdain.”
While recapping the oversight hearing, Deadline: White House host Nicolle Wallace turned to Frank Figliuzzi, a former FBI assistant director for counterintelligence, to get his take on the acting attorney general’s performance. Figliuzzi almost immediately charged that the nation’s top cop was less cooperative than some terrorists he dealt with while working at the Federal Bureau of Investigations.
“I’m not kidding when I say I have interviewed terrorists who are more cooperative and respectful than Matt Whitaker was today,” Figliuzzi deadpanned while Wallace broke out in laughter. “I gotta tell you, I say that with sadness, because the attorney general's role is America's lawyer.”
Figliuzzi went on to argue that Congress represents the American people and, thus, Whitaker’s behavior demonstrated “utter disdain” for the public.
“This is basically thumbing your nose at oversight by the people,” the MSNBC analyst declared. “And the way he conducted himself today is an indication that he’s not America's attorney; he’s essentially seeing himself as [President] Trump’s attorney.”
Wallace added that she believes that Whitaker—who will soon be replaced by attorney general nominee William Barr following confirmation by the Senate—was auditioning for another job in the Trump administration and was performing for “an audience of one, and that was Donald Trump.”