Friday 26 April 2019

New AG won't recuse himself from Mueller's Russia probe

 

Mr Barr has tried to allay fears raised by Democrats that he might disrupt Mr Mueller’s work. Photo: Reuters/Leah Millis
Mr Barr has tried to allay fears raised by Democrats that he might disrupt Mr Mueller’s work. Photo: Reuters/Leah Millis

Jon Sharman

Donald Trump's new attorney general will not recuse himself from oversight of Robert Mueller's investigation into alleged Russian collusion with the 2016 US presidential campaign, the Justice Department has announced.

Officials advised William Barr against the step and Mr Barr made a decision "consistent with that advice".

Mr Barr has tried to allay fears raised by Democrats that he might disrupt Mr Mueller's work.

During his confirmation hearing in January, he downplayed a memo he had sent to Justice Department and White House lawyers in which he criticised the investigation for its presumed enquiries into whether Mr Trump had obstructed justice.

Under Justice Department guidelines, Mr Mueller will provide a confidential report to Mr Barr that explains his decisions to pursue or decline prosecutions. Mr Barr will then prepare his own report for Congress.

He has said he intends to share some information with the public, though it is not clear whether Mr Mueller's actual report will ever be made public.

The president had publicly mocked and ultimately fired his first attorney general, Jeff Sessions, for recusing himself from Mr Mueller's investigation. Mr Trump named Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general in November. But Mr Whitaker came under fire after he declined to recuse himself despite advice from a Justice Department ethics official that he should step aside. (© Independent News Service)

Irish Independent

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