The Many Scandals of Bill Barr
September 22, 2022
When Bill Barr first took office, many people believed that he would restore faith in the Department of Justice and stand up to Trump’s worst impulses. Now, even Trump has turned against him. In this article, we take a look at Barr’s long history of corruption, incompetence, and illegal actions, and how he has worked hard to undermine the Department of Justice since his appointment.
OIG investigation and report
In early June 2018, a copy of the draft report was leaked to The New York Times. Congress has since requested a copy and Attorney General William P. Barr has refused to turn over the report, citing executive privilege. The U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General is investigating whether Barr acted improperly by releasing the final version to members of Congress before it was formally released by the DOJ’s Office of Public Affairs.
In his nine months as attorney general, Barr has overseen scandals that have damaged not only his department but also the entire nation’s legal system and democratic ideals.
Bill Barr is known as the Attorney General that was chosen by Donald Trump because he helped cover up a case involving Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential election. After his appointment, he became one of the most controversial figures in politics and has even been called
Uncle Joe by former President Barack Obama. Now, after less than two years on the job, it seems that Bill Barr is retiring from his post as Attorney General and will return to work at the law firm Kirkland & Ellis. Of course, his replacement will be very influential and will impact American life for many years to come. Here are some reasons why you should be worried about his departure from the office
Declining White House Cooperation
At his confirmation hearing, Barr refused to commit to releasing the unreacted Mueller report. This created distrust and animosity in the Democratic-controlled House. To add insult to injury,
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler demanded that he testify before the committee next week. Attorney General Barr refused this request as well and plans on skipping out on what will likely be a long day full of questioning and lecturing from Democrats.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler demanded that he testify before Congress and explain his reasoning for not releasing more details about Mueller’s report. Given Attorney General Barr’s prior lack of transparency, I’m sure that Nadler didn’t exactly think it was going to be an easy decision for him to agree to.
Nonetheless, he has declined yet another request from a government branch. It’s starting to look like Attorney General Barr has no desire whatsoever to be transparent with any branch besides his own White House.
Cooperating with Congressional Democrats
Republicans and Democrats have been waging an all-out battle over the Mueller Report. So when Attorney General William Barr appointed himself as Special Counsel and refused to appoint anyone from outside his own Department of Justice, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that there was a backlash.
Republican lawmakers excoriated Democratic Committee Chairmen Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Adam Schiff (D-CA) for going after Trump while they’re still in the minority, calling it sad. But Democrats haven’t rested since they tried to secure testimony from some of those who might have information about what was in the report – witness interviews conducted by Special Counsel Mueller’s team, along with a complete copy. And again, Attorney General Barr denied them that access.
In a report released to the public, Barr claimed Mueller found no evidence of collusion between Trump’s campaign and Russia. However, based on thousands of hours of non-public testimony, the investigation reportedly looked into over 25 Russians for interference in U.S. elections and how the Kremlin sought to influence voting in other countries.
Barr‘s reports also mention Trump repeatedly denied having any illicit relationship with two women: Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal (referred to as ‘the woman’). Despite this denial, we all know it happened thanks to Rudy Giuliani; who is notorious for dropping information like bombs but often defends President Trump.
Defending Trump’s Spying Claims
There are three possibilities for what Trump was talking about.
1) President Obama could have ordered surveillance at a hotel to find out if the Russians were meeting with Trump officials and recorded the whole thing without telling the Trump campaign;
2) there is evidence of incidental surveillance that was subsequently given to the government’s investigative arm, such as unmasking conversations from suspected terrorists and then quickly searching to find any references to Trump;
3) some form of espionage involving wiretapping and recording phone calls, where someone likely violated federal law by releasing that information to members outside an intelligence agency or law enforcement agency.
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