Justice Department storm intensifies with new attacks on Barr’s credibility

Analysis by Stephen Collinson, CNN

Updated 9:03 AM ET, Tue February 18, 2020

(CNN)A credibility crisis rocking President Donald Trump’s Justice Department significantly deepened over the long holiday weekend amid rising calls for Attorney General Bill Barr to quit over claims he has politicized highly sensitive cases.

Latest developments suggest that the President’s destruction of the invisible wall between the White House and the department and the obliging behavior of Barr may already mean that the question of possible political interference will haunt almost every large-scale Washington case for the rest of the current administration.

The drama escalated Monday as a letter demanding Barr’s resignation by a bipartisan group of former Justice officials gathered its 2,000th signature. The officials are dismayed by the attorney general’s decisions to tone down sentencing guidelines in the case of Roger Stone — the President’s long-time confidant and political trickster. The White House however said Monday that Trump still has full confidence in Barr.

That’s perhaps not surprising since the furor follows a string of moves by the attorney general that have appeared designed to shield the President and have pulled the Department into the political fray, notwithstanding Barr’s warning last week that Trump’s tweets make it impossible for him to do his job.

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Article URL : https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/18/politics/donald-trump-bill-barr-justice-department/index.html

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