Barr Sees No Evidence That Fraud Changed Election’s Outcome

Would getting fired over this salvage the AG's reputation?

"President Trump Participates in a Briefing" by The White House is marked with CC PDM 1.0

While President Trump continues to press his baseless claims of widespread voter fraud, the nation’s top law enforcement official says federal investigators have been unable to find evidence that this type of wrongdoing changed the result of the 2020 election.

In an interview with the Associated Press Tuesday, Attorney General William Barr said that “to date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election.”

Barr’s comments are the latest setback for President Trump’s effort to have Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election overturned. It also raises questions as to whether or not Barr will continue to head the DOJ during the sunset of Trump’s administration.

As the AP reported, Barr had authorized federal prosecutors to investigate “any ‘substantial allegations’ of voting irregularities, if they existed, before the 2020 presidential election was certified, despite no evidence at that time of widespread fraud.” But Barr’s comments make clear that this effort—widely viewed as politically motivated—will not provided ammunition for Trump’s ongoing campaign to delegitimize Biden’s victory.

Barr’s predecessor, Jeff Sessions, trigged Trump’s ire for not investing the actions of the FBI and the president’s political opponents during the 2016 election, among other things, and he was eventually ousted.

Is the same fate in store for Barr? We may find out soon. Barr will be at the White House today for what the AP described as a previously scheduled meeting. At this point, though, getting sacked could have career benefits. After his polarizing, controversial tenure as Trump’s legal wingman, it’s probably too late for Barr to salvage his once-sturdy establishmentarian reputation. But creating some distance between himself and the 45th president might make it a tiny bit easier to return to the world of elite law firms, big-dollar clients, and colleagues who might not be fully on board with the controversial outgoing administration.

See the full AP story here.

Senior Writer

Luke Mullins is a senior writer at Washingtonian magazine focusing on the people and institutions that control the city’s levers of power. He has written about the Koch Brothers’ attempt to take over The Cato Institute, David Gregory’s ouster as moderator of NBC’s Meet the Press, the collapse of Washington’s Metro system, and the conflict that split apart the founders of Politico.