Barr has considered resigning over Trump tweets about DOJ: reports
Attorney General William Barr has considered resigning over President Trump’s continued tweets regarding Justice Department investigations, according to multiple reports Tuesday night.
The Washington Post, which first reported the news, citing three administration officials, reported that Barr told people close to the president he was considering leaving over Trump’s tweets, which have continued unabated since Barr addressed them last week.
Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec pushed back on the reports Tuesday night, calling them “Beltway rumors” in a tweet and stating that Barr “has no plans to resign.”
Addressing Beltway rumors: The Attorney General has no plans to resign.
— KerriKupecDOJ (@KerriKupecDOJ) February 19, 2020
The Hill has reached out to the White House for comment.
Barr said in an interview with ABC News last week that Trump’s tweets about the Department of Justice matters make it “impossible for me to do my job.”
“I think it’s time to stop the tweeting about Department of Justice criminal cases,” Barr said.
Barr made the comment after the Justice Department rescinded a recommendation that GOP political operative and longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone be sentenced to seven to nine years in prison for lying to investigators and witness tampering.
The department has denied that Trump’s tweets decrying the original sentence recommendation played any part in the decision.
Trump publicly backed Barr earlier Tuesday, telling reporters: “I have total confidence in my attorney general. I think he’s doing an excellent job. He’s a strong guy.”
“I do make his job harder,” Trump added. “I do agree with that. I think that’s true.”
Republican leaders also publicly expressed support for the attorney general on Tuesday, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) calling him a “man of the highest character and unquestionable integrity” in a joint statement.
Barr reportedly visited the White House on Tuesday for a lunch with White House counsel Pat Cipollone that was already on his schedule, according to CNN, citing a Justice Department official and a source familiar with the matter.
Updated: 10:35 p.m.