The president gets to appoint his cabinet, subject to Senate approval, and so it is not a surprise when he picks people who favor his policies. But of all the cabinet positions, the attorney general is the one who is expected to be most independent of the president. This is reasonable, since the AG is responsible for the impartial application of the laws and the Department of Justice has immense power over individuals. Unfortunately, it is not unusual for AGs to seek to please the president at the expense of justice but the current AG Bill Barr has been extraordinarily brazen in his efforts to advance Trump’s agenda and to avoid criticizing him even when he advocates illegal actions, such as when Trump recently urged people to vote twice. Trump was supposedly suggesting this to expose the weaknesses of the election system, laying the groundwork for challenging his defeat in November.
In an interview yesterday evening with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, Attorney General William Barr avidly defended President Trump’s efforts to undermine the 2020 election. Barr not only offered his customary defense of his boss’s wild, paranoid lies, but repeatedly contradicted conclusions by his own government.
Trump has claimed mail-in voting is ripe for interference by foreign countries. His reasoning is that Trump voters are less concerned about the coronavirus than Biden voters, and thus more willing to vote in person, so anything he can do to complicate or disqualify mail-in voting during the pandemic will help him. Barr has claimed that foreign countries could mail in thousands of fake ballots. Blitzer asked Barr what he’s basing that on. “Logic,” he explained.
In fact, both U.S. intelligence and election-security officials have said they’ve detected no such foreign plot, and that it would be extraordinarily difficult to carry out. “The hyperlocal nature of ballots and elections is a natural barrier to fraudulent schemes, especially for national campaigns. Mail-in ballots are also scrutinized closely; they must be signed, and elections officials compare the signatures to those already in voters’ registration files,” reported the New York Times last week, after speaking to federal election-security officials who have studied the problem closely but apparently lack Barr’s powers of logic.
This article shows that Barr is capable of Trumpian levels of exaggeration and falsehoods.
As Attorney General William Barr faced renewed calls for his impeachment after claiming not to know whether it’s illegal for a U.S. voter to cast two ballots in a federal election, prosecutors and journalists have caught the nation’s top law enforcement officer in a “massive falsehood” about a mail-in ballot fraud case in Texas.
In his interview with CNN earlier this week, Barr told Wolf Blitzer that prosecutors had indicted a man who collected 1,700 blank ballots and used them to cast a specific vote.
Aside from vastly overstating the prevalence of fraud in vote-by-mail systems which have been used by millions of Americans for decades, Barr appeared to fabricate the facts about the case in Texas, prosecutors who worked on the case told the Washington Post.
Barr and Trump are two peas in a lying pod.