For months on end now, one particular subject has been dominating the morning paper, the evening news, and every single possible media outlet in between: The Mueller Report. Now, however, special counsel Robert S. Mueller III has turned in the highly anticipated findings on the presence of Russian interference in the 2016 election and the focus has shifted to the one man who received the more than 300 page report, Attorney General William Barr.
Barr, who was nominated to head the Justice Department by President Trump, received the report, released an eyebrow raising four-page summary just a couple of days later, and will ultimately decide how much of the huge report will be made public although he says it will take quite some time to decide that.
Keep scrolling for a look back at the career of Attorney General William Barr, including his involvement in some very notable moments in US history.
Barr, who grew up in New York, attended Columbia University, where he majored in government and received his Bachelor’s Degree in 1971. He went on to receive his Master’s Degrees in government and Chinese studies from there as well, finishing in 1973.
While studying law at night through George Washington University in Washington, D.C., Barr worked as a legal assistant at the CIA.
After graduating in 1977 and serving as a clerk for a judge on the US Court of Appeals in DC, he went to work for a DC law firm. After a brief stint there, he accepted a position in the Reagan administration to work on the domestic policy staff.
After serving in the White House until 1983, he returned to his old law firm where he worked until 1989 when he left because he was appointed as assistant Attorney General.
After a fast climb (two years) from assistant AG to deputy AG to acting AG, he was appointed to Attorney General in 1991.
Just days after Barr took office as Attorney General, a major crisis broke out at a prison in Talladega, Alabama as a group of Cuban inmates staged a riot and took several hostages in a story that captured national headlines. Barr was in charge of commanding a federal assault team to storm the prison and rescue the hostages. It was a success as the hostages were rescued and no shots were even fired.
Barr was a constant presence in important talks with President George Bush, here seen as they discuss the troubling situation facing the country during the 1992 Rodney King trial. Bush was known to take Barr’s opinions and suggestions under close advisement.
One of Barr’s most prominent talking points, something that would become a defining tone of his career, was his stance on crime, specifically “gangs, drugs, and guns”.
“I believe deeply that the first duty of government is providing for the personal security of its citizens… Therefore I would naturally place the highest priority on strengthening law enforcement.”, Barr said in 1992,
In November 2017, in an interview with The New York Times, Barr famously said there was more basis for investigating Hillary Clinton’s involvement in the uranium deal between the US and Russia than there was for investigating Trump’s possible collusion with Russia during the 2016 presidential election.
Barr also supported one of President Trump’s most controversial and criticized moves: the firing of FBI director James Comey, which many believe was a gross obstruction of justice.
Barr was also quoted as supporting another Trump power play- the firing of then-Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, who famously refused to follow through with Trump’s controversial travel ban which predominantly targeted Muslim countries.
As Attorney General, Barr has the power to also fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Barr has long supported a broad and expansive government surveillance program and related legislation, including the Patriot Act. This kind of support has caused many, including Sen. Rand Paul, to vote against him.
The American Civil Liberties Union calls Barr the “godfather of the NSA’s bulk data collection programs.”
Barr’s confirmation sparked hite House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders to tweet: “A major victory for justice and the rule of law in America: the Senate just confirmed President @realDonaldTrump’s outstanding nominee William Barr as Attorney General.”
The Mueller Report has been turned in and although we have received a brief summary, many Americans are left wondering what more, if any, we will find out from the MASSIVE investigation. The possible disclosure of information to the American people lies in Barr’s hands.