Joe Barbieri ’23
Last Tuesday, Attorney General William Barr declared that the Justice Department uncovered no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 Presidential election. In response, President Trump has refused to voice confidence in Barr, and when pressed further on the nature of Barr’s future in the cabinet, merely responded by saying: “Ask me that in a number of weeks from now.”
It now appears that Attorney General Barr is the latest Trump surrogate to get the cold shoulder from the president. As a matter of fact, Barr’s departure from the Trump Administration is evident, whether it be him resigning or Trump firing him.
As departures from Trump’s cabinet have been like clockwork, they also present a troubling aspect of the Trump presidency: the president’s need for loyalty. And when that loyalty is not given, all hell breaks loose.
While the Attorney General, like any other cabinet position, is appointed by the president, they should not be loyal to the president. Taking an oath upon entering the position, they are loyal to the Constitution and should be free from the president’s influence. One of the reasons why our democracy is so strong is due to the independence of our bureaucratic institutions.
Do not be surprised if, after Barr’s departure, President Trump fires off a tweet mocking Barr as being dumb, incompetent, or grossly overrated, a few of the president’s favorite insults. Truly, it would be another pointless charade in the Trump presidency.
Fervent Supporters of the president have also chimed in on Barr’s recent statement. Judge Jeanine Pirro, a known Trump loyalist, slammed Barr by calling him a reptile who was “so deep in the swamp” of the Deep State that he “can’t see beyond [his] fellow reptiles.” Continuing, Pirro also claimed Barr was “not the exceptional leader needed at this exceptional time in history.”
It is interesting to hear such harsh criticism from someone who once called the Attorney General a “cool cat” and described him as “lucid, focused, and unflappable.” It seems like that decency only extends to when the president is blindly followed.
Also, while Judge Pirro is right that Barr is not the “exceptional leader needed at this exceptional time”, that’s because William Barr is not the president! Being elected President of the United States allows one to be that “exceptional leader” but as the COVID-19 Pandemic rages on, killing thousands of Americans each day, Trump is only interested in chasing crazy conspiracy theories of election fraud.
Put simply President Trump is a sore loser. And he has two options: either show real, legitimate evidence of voter fraud or accept the loss, congratulate President-elect Biden, and help with a smooth transition of power. The country has bigger issues to worry about other than this political nonsense.
Unfortunately, as the last four years have shown us, selfishness is a pillar that will forever characterize the Trump presidency.