Trump's attorney general mulling his 'you can't fire me, I quit' moment — but the damage is already done

Trump's attorney general mulling his 'you can't fire me, I quit' moment — but the damage is already done
Photo via the White House.

William Barr may stop being attorney general before the end of Donald Trump's time in the White House, but will it be because he quit or was fired? Days after it was reported that Trump may fire Barr, new reports have Barr considering quitting.

Anonymous sources tell both The New York Times and The Washington Post that Barr was totally, absolutely, thinking about quitting before the reports that he might be fired. But even if this isn't a case of "You can't fire me because I quit," it's definitely a rat deserting the sinking ship. As long as Trump was in a position for Barr to advance an agenda of unchecked executive power, firing squads, white supremacy, and attempting to crush U.S. cities under federal power, Barr was on board—he reportedly told people that he would like to stay on into a second Trump term if Trump had won. But now, be it the impending humiliation of being fired or the impending loss of power anyway, he's ready to go.

One key question about Barr is whether he hopes to rehabilitate his reputation. He came into the job hailed as a guy who was going to be sober, respectable, and serious, a counterweight to Trump. He's been anything but—a brazenly dishonest figure abusing power in lockstep with Trump. At 70 years old, it's unlikely he thinks he's going to hang on to become attorney general in a third administration, but he could still be a prominent figure in the conservative legal world, the Republican Party, and the media.

The question is which part of the conservative legal world, which part of the Republican Party, and which part of the media. Does Barr want to resume being an establishment guy, quoted approvingly in media not owned by Rupert Murdoch and those to his right? Or does he want to stay full Trump?

Either way, the man who's presided over a federal capital punishment killing spree and sent unmarked federal militias to kidnap people off the street in U.S. cities cannot be gone soon enough. Here's hoping he and Trump trade blows on the way out.

#story_page_ below_article

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.