The rumor mill has been churning in recent weeks about potential changes President Donald Trump could make to key positions in his administration if he wins re-election, and those rumors include possibly firing and replacing top law enforcement officials like Attorney General Bill Barr and FBI Director Christopher Wray.
The attorney general is reported to have told his friends that he would prefer to stay on as the head of the Justice Department if President Trump wins a second term — assuming, of course, that the president doesn’t fire him instead, the Washington Examiner reported.
In good news for Barr, while Trump is likely to fire multiple high-ranking officials, including Wray, in a second term, Barr is not expected to be one of them, according to a Politico report published Sunday.
Rumors of a potential Barr exit have been largely driven by President Trump’s public frustration at the lack of results from the ongoing review of the FBI’s 2016 anti-Trump Russian collusion probe that is being led by U.S. Attorney John Durham of Connecticut.
Trump has also expressed his frustration with the lack of action by the DOJ or FBI with regard to allegations of corruption involving Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
Barr would like to stay
The Washington Post reported that Attorney General Barr has confided in friends and advisers that, if possible, he’d like to remain a part of the Trump administration in a second term.
Richard Cullen, an attorney who previously represented Vice President Mike Pence and has been a longtime personal friend of Barr, told the Post, “Barr told me recently he supports the president and would be inclined to stay if the president wanted him to.”
The media outlet also cited other unnamed sources as saying much the same thing, that Barr would prefer to stay on as attorney general and continue working — if the president will allow him to do so.
No official comment
The Post noted that both the DOJ and the FBI declined to comment when pressed for the story. However, a spokesman for the president, deputy press secretary Judd Deere, did provide the media outlet with a statement that seemed to highlight the good work Barr has done thus far while carefully avoiding the topic of whether he would be replaced in a second term or not.
“The Department of Justice under the leadership of Attorney General Barr has worked to carry out the President’s priorities, including restoring law and order to our communities through Operation Legend, confronting China, and combating human trafficking and smuggling,” Deere told the Post. “We have no personnel announcements at this time nor would it be appropriate to speculate about changes after the election or in a 2nd term.”
Patience is a virtue
Trump’s frustrations with Barr are shared by many of his supporters, particularly those who’ve been anxiously awaiting accountability for alleged wrongdoers within the federal government and the prior administration.
That said, Barr is, by all accounts, a consummate professional who is beholden only to the law. It is very possible, indeed, perhaps even probable, that he and his team are working quietly to build cases before making public moves like issuing indictments, and if that is the case, then the president and his supporters should be patient just a little while longer to see how things play out.