‘Confirm William Barr’

Editorial Boards: ‘The U.S. Senate Should Swiftly Approve William Barr,’ ‘The Sooner He's On The Job, The Better’


SENATE MAJORITY LEADER MITCH McCONNELL (R-KY): “In William Barr, President Trump has nominated a tried-and-true public servant and a proven professional to lead the men and women of the Department of Justice. Testifying before the Committee last month, Mr. Barr expressed his unwavering commitment to ‘the rule of law, the Constitution, and the American people.’ But my colleagues don’t have to take his word for it. Having served as Attorney General once before, Mr. Barr’s qualifications and job performance speak for themselves…. The Senate needs to act quickly to put William Barr back to work at the Justice Department.” (Sen. McConnell, Remarks, 2/07/2019)

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC), Judiciary Committee Chairman: “Mr. Barr is the right guy at the right time. He’s had the job in the past and is incredibly well-qualified for the position of Attorney General…. I am hopeful Democrats will support this fine man.” (Senate Judiciary Committee, Press Release, 1/15/2019)


‘Confirm William Barr As Attorney General’: ‘An Experienced, Responsible Law Enforcement Professional,’ ‘Hard To Find Someone More Qualified’

THE WASHINGTON POST: “Confirm William Barr …” (Editorial, “Confirm William Barr — And Hold Him To His Pledge Of Independence,” The Washington Post, 1/15/2019)

USA TODAY: “In the main, Barr is an experienced, responsible law enforcement professional with an impressive résumé … For these and other reasons, Barr deserves to be on a fast track to confirmation … His prior experience as attorney general in the administration of George H.W. Bush, which gives him a solid understanding of the Justice Department's culture of independence, makes him a strong candidate for the post. The sooner he's on the job, the better.” (Editorial, “Confirm William Barr As Attorney General,” USA Today, 1/28/2019)

LOS ANGELES TIMES: “Confirm William Barr … Barr has sterling professional credentials …” (Editorial, Los Angeles Times, 2/07/2019)

CHARLESTON POST AND COURIER: “The U.S. Senate should swiftly approve William Barr to succeed former Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions as attorney general. Mr. Barr served with distinction as attorney general for President George H. W. Bush and is widely considered a strong defender of the rule of law.” (Editorial, “William Barr For Attorney General,” The [Charleston] Post and Courier, 1/21/2019)

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: “Barr, who served the first President Bush as AG, has credibly assured senators under oath he will not bend to presidential intimidation. They should vote to confirm him.” (Editorial, New York Daily News, 1/16/2019)

JEFFREY TOOBIN: “Barr is experienced, knowledgeable, and clearly qualified, in any formal sense, for the job, which he has held before, under President George H. W. Bush. In addition, he has a reputation for integrity and straight dealing.” (Jeffrey Toobin, “William Barr and the Crucial Role of the Justice Department,” The New Yorker, 1/28/2019)


‘Barr Was Unequivocal That He’d Allow Robert Mueller To Continue His Investigation’

“[D]uring his confirmation hearing, Barr’s answers to senators’ questions about the Mueller probe were sufficiently reassuring that we believe the committee and the full Senate should approve his nomination…. Barr promised senators to ‘provide as much transparency as I can consistent with the law’ and to consult with Mueller and Rosenstein regarding ‘any disclosures or notifications that I make.’” (Editorial, Los Angeles Times, 2/07/2019)

“Mr. Barr was unequivocal that he’d allow Robert Mueller to continue his investigation ... ‘I believe it is in the best interest of everyone—the President, Congress, and, most importantly, the American people—that this matter be resolved by allowing the special counsel to complete his work,’ he said …” (Editorial, “Barr for the Presidency,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/15/2019)

“[I]t was a relief to hear William Barr, Trump’s latest choice for attorney general, pledge to allow Special Counsel Robert Mueller to complete his investigation. ‘If confirmed, I will not permit partisan politics, personal interests, or any other improper consideration to interfere with this or any other investigation,’ Barr said …” (Editorial, “William Barr’s Welcome Pledge To Protect Mueller,” The Seattle Times, 1/16/2019)

“Mr. Barr expressed confidence in special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, pledged to ensure the Russia probe would not be undermined without good cause and said he would seek to release as much information as possible about Mr. Mueller’s findings.” (Editorial, “Confirm William Barr — And Hold Him To His Pledge Of Independence,” The Washington Post, 1/15/2019)

“On the key issue facing the next AG — letting Special Counsel Bob Mueller finish his Russia probe — Barr was solid. He praised Mueller’s integrity and vowed institutional independence from the White House.” (Editorial, New York Daily News, 1/16/2019)

“He also said that in the public interest, special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing probe into Russian intervention in the 2016 presidential election should not be stopped.” (Editorial, “William Barr For Attorney General,” The [Charleston] Post and Courier, 1/21/2019)

“During his confirmation hearings, Barr went out of his way to praise special counsel Robert Mueller … The nominee, furthermore, expressed his strong opinion that the Mueller report should be made public as much as possible, consistent with department regulations.” (Editorial, “Confirm William Barr As Attorney General,” USA Today, 1/28/2019)


FLASHBACK: Judiciary Committee Democrats On William Barr: ‘I Was Broadly Encouraged,’ ‘His Answers Were Good,’ ‘I Think He’s Held Up Well,’ ‘Certainly Been Responsive To The Questions’

“Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, called Barr ‘obviously very smart,’ ‘bright’ and ‘capable,’ asserting that he ‘clearly understands’ the importance of ‘protecting’ the Department of Justice and the Mueller probe from political interference. ‘No one can say he isn't qualified,’ she said. ‘He was attorney general before.’” (CNN, 1/17/2019)

REPORTER: “How do you think the proceedings have gone so far?”

SEN. FEINSTEIN: “I think they’re going very well, as a matter of fact. I think the candidate is answering questions and, I think, doing well. And the questions cover a fairly wide range…. [H]e’s certainly been responsive to the questions. He hasn’t ducked them and he’s answered them as fully as he can…. I think he’s held up well.”

REPORTER: “And so you see this as a pretty easy road for him to confirmation?”

FEINSTEIN: “Oh I think so. We’ll see.”

(Sen. Feinstein, Press Conference, 1/15/2019)

  • SEN. FEINSTEIN: “His answers were good. He clearly understands the need for independence …” (U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing, 1/16/2019)

SEN. DICK DURBIN (D-IL): “[T]hey asked me about your statements this morning, your testimony and I thought they were good …” (U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing, 1/15/2019)

CNN’S WOLF BLITZER: “Did you find, Senator, [Mr. Barr’s] public testimony today reassuring?”

SEN. CHRIS COONS (D-DE): “Well, broadly speaking, yes. He made forceful statements about his respect for Robert Mueller, his long relationship with him, and his belief that it is in the country’s best interest to ensure that he has the resources and the independence to complete his investigation without interference…. I was broadly encouraged by his tone, his forcefulness, his determination to be independent of the president and to protect the Department of Justice and Mueller’s investigation.…” (CNN’s “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer,” 1/15/2019)

“Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse [D-RI] said Barr ‘did pretty well.’” (“‘Did Pretty Well’: Boost For Trump As William Barr Impresses Democrats In Marathon Confirmation Hearing,” Washington Examiner, 1/15/2019)



Related Issues: Senate Democrats, Law Enforcement, Nominations