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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."  

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Dead malls get new life

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Malls are becoming ghosts of retail past. But the left-behind real estate is being reimagined for a post-pandemic world.

Why it matters: As many as 17% of malls in the U.S. "may no longer be viable as shopping centers and need to be redeveloped into other uses," per Barclays.

White House now says Biden will move to increase refugee cap by May 15

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The White House on Friday afternoon said President Biden plans to lift the Trump-era refugee cap by May 15.

Driving the news: The announcement follows stinging criticism from several Democrats and rights groups, who said Biden was walking back on his pledge to raise the limit. Earlier Friday, Biden signed a directive to speed up the processing of refugees, but kept the Trump administration's historically low cap of 15,000 refugees for this year.