In an interview that aired on Fox News Sunday, President Donald Trump blasted his own U.S. attorney general, Bill Barr, saying he cost Trump the election by keeping quiet about a criminal investigation of Hunter Biden. The president said someone competent like Special Counsel Robert Mueller would have “set the record straight” as he did after disputed press reports during the impeachment hearings.
Just hours after retweeting a post which said Barr “should be fired by the end of business today,” Trump told Fox News host Brian Kilmeade he’s greatly “disappointed” in Barr for reportedly following Justice Department ethics rules and keeping quiet about a probe in which the subject, Hunter Biden, has not been criminally charged.
Trump compared Barr to Mueller, saying the special counsel would have at least corrected Joe Biden for “lying on the debate stage” about there being no investigation into his son.
Trump expressed his frustration that Barr kept the Hunter Biden investigation quiet unlike former FBI Director James Comey during the 2016 presidential election investigation into Hillary Clinton‘s private email server use— something the president claims could have once again swayed the vote. In October 2016, Comey announced the FBI was investigating Clinton over the email server, which many Clinton supporters say helped Trump go on to win the election just weeks later.
“Who isn’t disappointed? Joe Biden lied on the debate stage, he said ‘there’s nothing happening’ and Barr should have stepped up,” Trump told Kilmeade in the Fox interview.
“I’ll tell you what, say what you want about Robert Mueller, when Buzzfeed put out a phony article, Bob Mueller stepped out and said ‘that is a phony article‘ and it was ultimately proven, no collusion. After two years, no collusion. But Bob Mueller stood up and he interjected that this article was false, Bill Barr should have done the same thing.”
Longtime Fox Radio host Todd Starnes posted a tweet Friday that if Barr “knew in the spring about the Biden investigation and kept it quiet—he should be fired by the end of business today,” which prompted a Trump retweet the following day.
The president went on to ridicule Barr over the past 24 hours, calling him a “big disappointment” and accusing him of doing nothing even as Democratic “partisan killers” seek to hide negative reports about Biden and his son.
“Why didn’t Bill Barr reveal the truth to the public, before the Election, about Hunter Biden. Joe was lying on the debate stage that nothing was wrong, or going on – Press confirmed. Big disadvantage for Republicans at the polls!” Trump tweeted Saturday afternoon.
Newsweek reached out to the Justice Department Sunday morning for additional remarks to the president’s criticisms.
Updated 10:17 AM ET, with additional information.