U.S. Attorney General William Barr said on Thursday that President Donald Trump’s attacks on prosecutors, the judge, and jurors in the trial of a longtime adviser undermined the Justice Department’s work, adding he would not be “bullied” by anyone, Reuters informed.
In an ABC interview, Barr, the country’s top law enforcement officer, said Trump’s criticism of those involved in the case of Roger Stone “make it impossible for me to do my job.”
Barr spoke after his Justice Department abandoned prosecutors’ initial recommendation to give the veteran Republican operative seven to nine years in prison, prompting all four prosecutors to quit the case.
Trump has weighed in on Twitter all week with comments that have aroused concerns his administration is weakening the rule of law.
“I’m not going to be bullied or influenced by anybody … whether it’s Congress, a newspaper editorial board or the president,” Barr said.
“I cannot do my job here at the department with a constant background commentary that undercuts me,” Barr said, adding: “I think it’s time to stop the tweeting about Department of Justice criminal cases.”
“The President has full faith and confidence in Attorney General Barr to do his job and uphold the law,” White House spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.
Trump’s fellow Republicans also expressed support for Barr. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a staunch Trump supporter, said Barr was “a great choice” as attorney general, Reuters writes.
“I think if the attorney general says it’s getting in the way of doing his job, maybe the president should listen to the attorney general,” McConnell told Fox News.