President Trump escalated his criticism of Attorney General William Barr on Saturday, calling him “a big disappointment” and raising the prospect of a high-profile shake-up in the waning days of his administration.

Trump has railed against Barr’s decision to publicly declare that the Department of Justice (DOJ) found no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the election, despite claims made by the president and his allies.

The president launched a series of fresh broadsides against Barr on Saturday after it became clear that the Supreme Court would not intervene in a challenge by Trump’s allies to overturn the election results.

Trump shared a tweet that called for Barr to be quickly fired over reports that the attorney general was aware of a DOJ probe into President-elect Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden in the spring but worked to keep it private.

“A big disappointment!” Trump wrote in response to the tweet. 

“IF Biden gets in, nothing will happen to Hunter or Joe. Barr will do nothing, and the new group of partisan killers coming in will quickly kill it all,” Trump followed up in another tweet.

In a third post, Trump said he thought Barr’s decision to keep the Hunter Biden probe private hurt Republicans at the ballot box last month and called out the attorney general by name.

“Why didn’t Bill Barr reveal the truth to the public, before the Election, about Hunter Biden. Joe was lying on the debate stage that nothing was wrong, or going on – Press confirmed. Big disadvantage for Republicans at the polls!” he tweeted.

The broadsides put in stark relief Trump’s rapid shift in attitude toward Barr, who had long gained the White House’s favor for pushing the president’s agenda but has seen his stock nose-dive in the past few weeks.

The attorney general first broke with the president earlier this month when he said the DOJ had not uncovered evidence of widespread voter fraud that would change the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. Barr added that U.S. attorneys and the FBI had been investigating specific complaints following the election but had not uncovered anything broad enough to come close to reversing Trump’s loss to Biden. 

That public break came to a head in a tense meeting that week in the White House between Trump and Barr. That meeting sparked chatter that Barr was possibly on his way out, particularly after Trump refused to say he had confidence in Barr. 

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

Reports surfaced after the meeting saying Barr was mulling leaving his post before the end of the Trump administration in January, but The New York Times reported Thursday that he will finish his term as attorney general.

However, scrutiny ramped up again in recent days over a report that Barr refrained from providing information on federal probes into Hunter Biden to congressional Republicans, though the investigations ultimately became public this week.

Trump and his Republican allies in Congress and the media have made Hunter Biden a top target over his tenure working for an energy company in Ukraine while Joe Biden was vice president, though no evidence has surfaced indicating any wrongdoing by either Biden.

The president has already looked to clean house of house any staffers in his administration deemed insufficiently loyal since after his Nov. 3 election loss.

Trump last month fired former Defense Secretary Mark Esper, with whom he’d had a rocky relationship, and installed Christopher Miller, the former director of the National Counterterrorism Center and an ally, as his acting replacement. He also moved to put Corey Lewandowski and David Bossie, two of his closest allies, on a Pentagon advisory board after the panel’s members were dismissed.

Tags 2020 election Bill Barr Corey Lewandowski Department of Justice Donald Trump Hunter Biden Joe Biden Mark Esper William Barr

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