Trump intends to nominate William Barr as next attorney general

President George H.W. Bush and William Barr wave after Barr was sworn in as Attorney General in 1991

If confirmed by the Senate, Barr would succeed Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who was forced out by Trump in November.

William Barr, the man multiple sources say President Donald Trump has told advisers he intends to nominate as his next attorney general, is no stranger to the job.

This, of course, is no normal time - and it didn't take long for interested parties to scour Mr Barr's recent comments and writings in search of any meaningful hints on how he would oversee Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation. The other person characterized Barr as "the leading contender".

After leaving the Justice Department, Barr served as the general counsel and executive vice president of Verizon Communications but retired from the role in 2008. Barr is now an attorney for Kirkland and Ellis, a high-profile Washington, D.C., law firm.

The White House declined to comment.

If nominated and confirmed, he would replace Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, who's held the top post since Trump fired Jeff Sessions last month. Sessions' decision helped set in motion Mueller's appointment.

Barr served in the Bush administration from 1989 to 1993, starting out as an assistant attorney general in charge of the Office of Legal Counsel before becoming the deputy attorney general in 1990.

The former attorney general hasn't shied away from weighing in on Mueller's investigation.

Regardless, Barr's confirmation process is likely to take months.

Richard Cullen, who served as U.S. Attorney under Barr, describes him as a good pick for the role. "Those are the best attorneys general", said Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), a former Judiciary chairman who remains on the committee suggested Wednesday that Barr would get bipartisan support in the Senate.

Barr, he said, could fit that bill.

It is unclear how Barr views that investigation.

"To the extent it is not pursuing these matters, the department is abdicating its responsibility", he said.

Unfortunately, beginning in July [of 2016], when he announced the outcome of the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while secretary of state, he crossed a line that is fundamental to the allocation of authority in the Justice Department. He expressed confidence in Mueller early on and suggested the investigation wouldn't devolve into a "witch hunt", but he also has shared some disappointment when asked by The Washington Post a year ago about the donations that some of Mueller's team members made to Democrats.

"In my view, prosecutors who make political contributions are identifying fairly strongly with a political party".



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