Nov 16, 2019

Bill Barr defends Trump's executive power amid impeachment inquiry

Attorney General William Barr. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Attorney General Bill Barr vehemently defended President Trump's executive authority and said Trump's opponents were "engaged in a war to cripple by any means necessary a duly elected government," in a speech before a conservative legal group Friday.

Why it matters: Barr's speech "affirmed his credentials as a staunch defender of presidential power," CNN writes. His show of public support comes amid reports that his refusal to publicly absolve the president in the Trump-Ukraine saga has fractured their relationship.

What he's saying: In his speech at an annual Federalist Society Convention, Barr mentioned that Trump's opponents call themselves "The Resistance," and the attorney general accused them of "using every tool and maneuver available to sabotage the functioning of [Trump's] Administration."

  • "Now, 'resistance' is the language used to describe insurgency against rule imposed by an occupying military power ... This is a very dangerous—indeed incendiary—notion to import into the politics of a democratic republic," Barr said.
  • “[I]n waging a scorched-earth, no-holds-barred war of 'Resistance' against this Administration, it is the Left that is engaged in the systematic shredding of norms and the undermining the rule of law."
  • Barr explained that he believes Congress has some authority to conduct oversight on the executive branch, "[b]ut the sheer volume of what we see today – the pursuit of scores of parallel 'investigations' through an avalanche of subpoenas – is plainly designed to incapacitate the Executive Branch, and indeed is touted as such."  

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Eric Holder: Bill Barr "is unfit to lead the Justice Department"

Former Attorney General Eric Holder and current Attorney General Bill Barr. Photo: Paul Marotta/Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Former Attorney General Eric Holder said in an op-ed for the Washington Post that his successor Bill Barr is "unfit to lead the Justice Department" due to his "nakedly partisan" actions.

Why it matters: Holder argues Barr has diminished his professional reputation in the legal world by working for President Trump because Barr puts the president's interests above the nation's.

Go deeperArrowDec 12, 2019

Barr attacks Russia investigation as "completely baseless"

Attorney General Bill Barr dismissed some of the findings of the Justice Department's inspector general report in an interview with NBC News on Tuesday, saying he doesn't agree that there was "sufficient predication" to open a counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign and that the prosecutor he appointed will have the final say.

Go deeperArrowDec 10, 2019

AG Bill Barr: Communities that protest police could lose protection

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Attorney General William Barr said in a speech at a Justice Department ceremony on Tuesday honoring police officers that communities that protest law enforcement "might find themselves without the police protection they need.”

Why it matters: Critics of his speech marked it as "a clear attack on minorities who have protested police brutality and other racially skewed law enforcement abuses," the Washington Post writes.

Go deeperArrowDec 4, 2019