Former Attorney General Eric Holder, who served under President Barack Obama, has declared current Attorney General William Barr as “unfit” for that job.
Holder served as attorney general for almost the entirety of Obama’s two terms, beginning in 2009 and going through 2015 and recently he penned a Washington Post op-ed article with some scathing insights into AG Barr’s conduct. He said that although he was “reluctant to publicly criticize my successors,” but that Barr’s behavior was so “plainly ideological, so nakedly partisan, and so deeply inappropriate for America’s chief law-enforcement official” that he felt compelled to address it.
Barr’s time in office, which only began this past January, has been marred with controversy, mainly due to the fact that many see his actions as those of a personal attorney to President Trump rather than this country’s attorney general.
Of course, Barr has been in the spotlight – with much criticism – for publicly finding fault with the results of the Department of Justice inspector general’s report into the why the FBI originally opened up the investigation into Russian interference with the last presidential election. Earlier this month he went so far as to say that the FBI acted in bad faith by opening such an investigation.
Holder also drew attention to remarks made by Barr at a Federalist Society event last month, which Holder said was about “essentially unbridled executive power, dismissing the authority of the legislative and judicial branches — and the checks and balances at the heart of America’s constitutional order.”
Barr has come under fire for that speech because he went straight into partisan warfare saying, “In waging scorched-earth, no-holds-barred war of ‘resistance’ against this administration, it is the left that is engaged in the systematic shredding of norms and the undermining of the rule of law.”
Holder says that those statements alone exposed Barr “as a partisan actor, not an impartial law-enforcement official.”
And then, just a few weeks later, AG Barr spoke at a Department of Justice ceremony and seemed to threaten localities that weren’t, according to him, respectful to law enforcement with less resources. Holder addressed that too, saying, “no one who understands — let alone truly respects — the impartial administration of justice or the role of law enforcement could ever say such a thing.” Holder said Barr’s remarks were “antithetical to the most basic tenets of equality and justice.”
Holder went on to accuse Barr of “using partisan talking points bearing no resemblance to the facts his own department has uncovered” in his disapproving response of the inspector general’s finding on the Russian inquiry, which incidentally, deemed that there was “authorized purpose” in opening the case.
Barr spoke to NBC’s Pete Williams and said, “I think our nation was turned on its head for three years based on a completely bogus narrative that was largely fanned and hyped by a completely irresponsible press… I think there were gross abuses … and inexplicable behavior that is intolerable in the FBI.”
Holder says Barr’s “words and actions have been fundamentally inconsistent with his duty to the Constitution” and expressed concern that Barr’s conduct of “running political interference for an increasingly lawless president — will wreak lasting damage.”