Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee, the New York City Bar Association, and others are calling on Attorney General William Barr to recuse himself from “matters related to Ukraine.”
“He’s the attorney general, supposedly of our country, but it becomes clearer every day he’s the lawyer for the President,” Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) said Tuesday on CNN.
Hirona, one of 10 Democratic senators who sit on the Judiciary Committee, joined all the other Democrats to send a letter last week “calling on Barr to step away from the Ukraine investigations and ‘identify the appropriate official who will be responsible for these matters,'” CNN reports.
“Impartial enforcement of the law is essential to give the American public confidence in the Justice Department’s work,” the letter reads. “Your personal connection to these matters creates the appearance of a conflict of interest and gives rise to questions about whether the Department is being used to advance the President’s personal interests.”
Last Wednesday, the NY Bar Association said: “As White House records made clear, the president told his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, that Mr. Barr ‘would be in touch with him’ to follow up on the president’s requests. The whistleblower found this telephone call to be of ‘urgent concern’ because of the president’s apparent intermingling of U.S. foreign policy interests with his personal political interests in apparent violation of U.S. law.”
The association “raised concerns about whether Barr had knowledge of promises made by Trump in the phone call. In addition, the association said Barr ‘was obligated to recuse himself from any involvement in DOJ’s review of either the whistleblower complaint of the substance of the president’s actions once the president offered Mr. Barr’s services to President Zelensky,'” Fox News reports. “The bar also suggested that Barr be forced to resign, face sanctions or be removed if he doesn’t recuse himself from the probe.”
Barr said Monday that he does not serve as the president’s personal lawyer.
“That’s completely wrong and there is no basis for it,” Barr said in an interview with Fox News. “I act on behalf of the United States.”
“Barr also sought to distance himself from the investigation, though he is closely supervising it,” Yahoo reports. “Barr played down his overseas travel, which has gained attention in recent weeks, as an attempt to open doors for the lead investigator, the veteran prosecutor John H. Durham.”
“He is in charge of the investigation,” Barr said of Durham. “I’m not doing the investigation.”
We ask you: What should Barr do?