Dec 1, 2020 - Politics & Policy

The walls close in on Trump

Walls closing in on Trump

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

With Bill Barr's "Et tu, Brute!" interview with AP, President Trump is watching the walls close in on his claims of fraud, hoaxes and conspiracies.

Why it matters: Trump and his legal team continue to claim election fraud. But the Republican governors of Arizona and Georgia have certified their elections, a loyalist like Barr has weighed in, and lower-ranking officials have taken potshots.

The big picture: The deadline for states to choose electors is just a week away — Dec. 8 — and those electors will submit their votes six days later.

  • Barr's conclusion that “we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election” would be a blow enough even if it didn't follow notable public statements from other officials.
  • Former CISA director Chris Krebs reassured the public about election systems' integrity via Twitter, and interviews before and after being fired as director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.
  • FDA chief Stephen Hahn pushed back against presidential pressure to rush approval of a COVID vaccine, as Axios scooped Monday night.

The backdrop: Jonathan Swan reports Trump is pressuring Barr to release a report the president believes could hurt perceived Obama-era enemies — and views Barr's designation of veteran prosecutor John Durham as special counsel as a stall tactic.

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