Barr turned down defense attorney job with Trump: report

President TrumpDonald John TrumpPentagon update to missile defense doctrine will explore space-base technologies, lasers to counter threats Giuliani: 'I never said there was no collusion' between the Trump campaign and Russia Former congressmen, RNC members appointed to Trump administration roles MORE's pick to be the next attorney general, William Barr, was previously offered a position as Trump's defense attorney, Yahoo News reports.

Trump met privately with Barr in the spring of 2017 and asked if he would serve as his defense attorney to defend him against special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE's ongoing investigation, according to the news outlet. 

Barr reportedly said he had other obligations, indicated his answer was no, but said he would think about it.

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Yahoo News reports that Trump and his top advisers discussed hiring Barr again earlier this year after Trump's lead personal attorney handling Mueller's investigation, John Dowd, resigned. 

The discussions ceased once Trump hired Rudy Giuliani this past summer to take Dowd's place. 

The White House did not immediately respond to The Hill's request for confirmation of the report.

Trump on Friday said he would nominate Barr to be the next attorney general.

"He was my first choice since day one," Trump told reporters outside the White House. "He'll be nominated."

If confirmed, Barr would take over after the exit of Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsBudowsky: Senate must protect Mueller from Barr, President Trump Feinstein grappling with vote on AG nominee Barr Central American women fleeing domestic violence deserve refugee status MORE, who resigned at Trump's request in early November.

The president long criticized Sessions for not keeping a tighter leash on Mueller.

Barr is expected to face a tough confirmation battle in the Senate. Trump said Friday that he hoped the process will "go very quickly."