US Senate panel approves Trump attorney-general nominee William Barr

US Senate panel approves Trump attorney-general nominee William Barr

In the memo, Barr wrote that Trump could not have obstructed justice by firing former FBI Director James Comey since it was an act the president was constitutionally entitled to take.

The full Senate will vote on Barr's confirmation next week, and he is expected to be approved. The Washington Post, CNN and NPR have coverage.

Barr came under scrutiny for sending an unsolicited 20-page memo to the Department of Justice criticizing special counsel Robert Mueller probe's line of investigation into possible obstruction of justice.

Barr criticised the investigation past year in a memo to the Justice Department, but he told the committee in confirmation hearings three weeks ago that he would allow Mueller to conclude his work and said he would make as much of his findings public as possible.

In supporting Barr's nomination, Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham said, "I think we need a steady hand at the Department of Justice".

Barr's confirmation is expected in the Republican-controlled Senate, though his nomination encountered resistance Thursday from Democrats concerned by Barr's expansive views of executive authority and by his non-committal stance on making public Mueller's findings.

As scandal engulfs Virginia’s leaders, Dems are speechless and Trump weighs in
Fairfax said Monday that the reports of him committing sexual assault are false and the encounter was "100% consensual". David Yancey was tied with Democrat Shelly Simonds after all votes were counted in the 2017 Virginia election.

Barr has declined to offer a firm guarantee that he would release Mueller's report in its entirety - noting that the regulations governing Mueller's appointment do not call for that.

Democrats on the U.S. House of Representatives' Judiciary Committee on Thursday prepared a subpoena to compel Whitaker to testify on Friday, prompting him to say he will not appear unless the subpoena threat is lifted.

Some Democrats have also expressed concern that Barr won't be a check on the president who appointed him.

"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", Barr said.

"I hope if he's the next attorney general, and he's likely to be, that what I saw in his family, what I saw in his resume, what I've seen in his commitment to the issue of justice, will come through clearly", Sen. On Thursday, Sen. John Kennedy, Republican of Louisiana, said that he would vote for it even though he said the "only question" is whether the Mueller report is going to leak "in toto" or in part. "I don't know what Bob Mueller is writing", Barr said at his hearing last month.

While he led major initiatives of the Trump administration to crack down on crime and illegal immigration, Sessions angered the president when he recused himself from overseeing the Mueller probe because of his own contacts with Russians.

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