AG Barr is on the hot seat – his hottest seat yet

There are signs that William Barr might not be the U.S. attorney general for much longer. 

President Donald Trump on Thursday refused to answer a question about whether he still has confidence in Barr.

“Ask me that in a number of weeks from now,” the president told White House reporters. “They should be looking at all of this fraud. This is not civil, he thought it was civil. This is not civil; this is criminal stuff. This is very bad, criminal stuff.”

The president added that Barr “hasn’t done anything. He hasn’t looked” for voter fraud, and his investigators “haven’t looked very hard” either. Trump called Barr and the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) inaction “a disappointment.”

Background

This comes after Barr on Tuesday told the Associated Press that “to date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election.”

This stands in contrast to the claims of election fraud made by President Trump and his legal team. Reports indicate that the president was furious with Barr for making this statement to the Associated Press. 

On Wednesday, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany refused to tell reporters whether President Trump still had confidence in Barr. “If the president has any personnel announcements, you will be the first to know it,” she said.

A DOJ spokesperson has put out a statement clarifying Barr’s comment to the Associated Press. It reads:

Some media outlets have incorrectly reported that the Department has concluded its investigation of election fraud and announced an affirmative finding of no fraud in the election. That is not what the Associated Press reported nor what the Attorney General stated. The Department will continue to receive and vigorously pursue all specific and credible allegations of fraud as expeditiously as possible.

A relationship on the rocks

Even before the election, there were signs that President Trump and Barr might not quite be on the same terms.

In October, President Trump openly stated that he was “not happy” with Barr, but he stopped short of saying that he was considering whether to fire the attorney general. This came after Barr and the DOJ found no wrongdoing in the unmasking requests made by the Barack Obama administration.

The president, last weekend, also expressed displeasure with the DOJ’s investigation into the Russia collusion hoax. He stated that he might appoint a “special prosecutor” to do what Barr hasn’t.

At this point, whether or not Barr makes it to Inauguration Day is a valid question.

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