US Attorney General William Barr denied in an interview on Thursday that the Department of Justice (DOJ) continuously upholds the interests of President Donald Trump.
In response to a question about whether the president had power to use his authority in cases where he has an interest, Barr stated that those were cases in which he was acting, not the president. This included the dismissal of the case against Michael Flynn, the removal of Geoffrey Berman in New York and the Roger Stone case.
While the president ultimately has authority as chief executive to “see that the laws are faithfully executed against the attorney general who performs that function under the law,” all cases in the DOJ are subject to the attorney general’s supervision. The president does not have the power or authority to determine how reports, such as the Durham investigation, will come out.
Barr did note that, in certain circumstances, presidential action regarding law enforcement cases could amount to an abuse of presidential power.
However, Barr asserted that there was no pattern of the DOJ continually upholding the personal interests of the president. He stated that idea was a “media narrative that has been adhered to, where things that happen all the time in the Department of Justice are misrepresented to the public and cast as somehow suspicious.”