Corey Lewandowski seemed to run the table on the Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. He was stonewalling, pretending to not remember his own notes and conversations, getting in jabs about his alleged "good looks," plugs for his Senate run, and just getting away with grossly ethically deviant and defiant behavior. He and Brett Kavanaugh must be very fond of one another.
It was painful to watch even for the average layperson, but for legal eagles like Elie Mystal and Ari Melber, it was excruciating. Mystal joined Melber on "The Beat" on Wednesday to give a master class on the way to handle hostile, bratty, entitled, criminal douchebros like Lewandowski. He also gave the Democrats some pretty solid advice on how to move on with these proceedings.
Then Mystal demonstrated in a hilarious mini-cross-examination to drive the point even further home.
MYSTAL: Did you wear a tie yesterday?
MYSTAL: Here are 137 episodes of The Beat. Is this you in all the episodes? Are you wearing a tie in all these episodes? Mr. Melber! Do you want this committee to believe that you do not like ties?
THAT'S how you do it. It's an actual skill that the Democratic Congresspeople don't have. This whole hearing should have been designed to make Barry Berke the star. Because HE is the one who had the credentials and the experience to break Lewandowski down.
Melber harkened back to Watergate, and Senator Fred Thompson, who ended up on the show Mystal used as an example in his rant — "Law and Order." (Well-played, Ari, we see you...) But the point was Sen. Thompson was extremely skilled in cross-examination and THAT was the skill that was needed in that moment, like it is needed in this one. He reinforced Mystal's point that Dems on the Judiciary Committee who are anything short of BRILLIANT at cross-examination should cede the floor to people who are. All egos aside. And Mystal explained why.
There's nothing -- there's a level of obstruction that the Trump administration is willing to go to. There's a level of disrespect that the Trump witnesses are willing to go to that these Congresspeople simply aren't used to dealing with. They are not ready to deal with that. And again, that's training. We have people who are specifically trained to deal with criminals and hostile witnesses and know how to illicit answers from them.
Then Melber asked Mystal a Yes or No question of his own...
MYSTAL: I absolutely will come back. Because I don't lie when I'm here.
It was a great teaching moment for Dems, who cannot afford to miss ANY MORE learning opportunities like this. I hope they were watching. I hope they take his advice. Because if they don't, then it may turn out Nancy Pelosi's instinct for avoiding impeachment may be the the right one, but not for the reason everyone thinks. It might be because she knows what Mystal is saying is true - they aren't able to get out of their own way enough to do the job right.
I say that with all the love and faith in the Dems on that committee, but we need this and we cannot afford any missteps or missed opportunities like we had when Lewandowki was in front of them. DON'T f*ck it up. For the love of all that is holy, let the experts handle this.