Barr considering stepping down before end of Trump term
By leaving early, Barr may avoid a fight with Trump over his refusal to help the president rewrite the election results.
United States Attorney General William Barr is considering stepping down from his post before the end of Donald Trump’s presidency. The New York Times is reporting Barr could publicly state an intent to vacate the office before the end of the year.
Last week, Barr announced that his Justice Department uncovered no voting fraud “on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election.”
His statement earned the attorney general a swift repudiation from President Donald Trump, who was reportedly furious over the declaration, which countered the president’s claims.
Fox News host Jeanine Pirro scolded Barr this weekend in a now-viral clip.
“You, Mr. Barr, are so deep in the swamp that you can’t see beyond your fellow reptiles,” she said, “and you are not the exceptional leader needed at this exceptional moment in history.”
Sources in the Times story have said Barr has been weighing his departure since before last week. The story notes that by leaving early, he could avoid a confrontation with the president over his refusal to continue Trump’s attempts to rewrite the 2020 presidential election results.
If Barr were to step down before the end of Trump’s term, Jeffrey A. Rosen, the deputy attorney general, would serve in the interim until President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in on Jan. 20.
Just last week, the Barr-led Justice Department published a rule change set to take effect Dec. 24 which could mean federal inmates who are facing death sentences could be sentenced to death by electrocution, gas or firing squads in certain circumstances.
There are four Black men and one Black woman scheduled to be executed before the end of the Trump presidency.
Barr has been an outspoken advocate for the president since being confirmed by the Republican-controlled Senate in February 2019. Three months later, he appointed John Durham to conduct a probe into possible wrongdoing in the basis of the Russia investigation.
Durham uncovered none.
Barr was previously attorney general, for two years, under President George H.W. Bush. He also worked in the private sector as the general counsel of GTE Corp., which later became Verizon. A corporate payout made him a multi-millionaire.
He is expected to retire after leaving the Justice Department.