Trump had tense meeting with Barr after statement DOJ found no widespread election fraud: reports

President Trump had a tense meeting with Attorney General William Barr after he said this week that the Department of Justice (DOJ) has not found any evidence of widespread election fraud, ABC News and CNN reported

Sources familiar with the matter told the networks that when Barr visited the White House on Tuesday for a pre-scheduled meeting with chief of staff Mark Meadows, Trump sought to speak with the attorney general once he was there.

The meeting took place came shortly after The Associated Press published its interview with him, in which he said, “To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have affected a different outcome in the election.”

One source told ABC News that the Trump-Barr conversation was “intense” but would not give further details. ABC News first reported the meeting on Wednesday.

Trump was asked about Barr’s comments on-camera on Thursday at the White House.

He pushed back on the Barr remarks, arguing the Department of Justice hasn’t looked hard enough.

“He hasn’t done anything, so he hasn’t looked. When he looks he’ll see the kind of evidence that right now you are seeing in the Georgia senate. They are going through hearings right now in Georgia and they are finding tremendous volumes,” Trump told reporters in the Oval Office. “So, they haven’t looked very hard. Which is a disappointment, to be honest with you, because it’s massive fraud.”

So far, there has been no meaningful evidence to suggest voter fraud decided the election between Trump and President-elect Joe Biden. 

Barr’s remarks in an interview with The Associated Press were still remarkable, however, as they represented a break between him and the president, who has refused to back down from his contention that the election was stolen from him despite a series of losses in court and rising calls from Republican officeholders to move on. 

Trump declined Thursday to offer a vote of confidence in Barr. 

“Ask me that in a number of weeks from now. They should be looking at all of this fraud,” Trump said. “This is not civil. He thought it was civil. This is not civil. This is criminal stuff. This is very bad criminal stuff.”

The White House and DOJ did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the ABC and CNN reports. 

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany declined to say in a Wednesday press conference whether Trump and Barr talked since the AP interview and whether Trump still had confidence in his attorney general.

Sources told both ABC News and CNN that Trump has expressed anger at his attorney general in private and considered firing him, although several advisers suggested against that. The Washington Post first reported that the president was considering getting rid of Barr. 

Tags Department of Justice DOJ Donald Trump Joe Biden Mark Meadows White House William Barr
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