President Donald Trump is frustrated with Attorney General William Barr after his comments to The Associated Press breaking from the President’s false claims of fraud in the election, two sources tell CNN.
The sources — an administration official and a separate adviser — described Trump as “disappointed” in Barr’s initial comments to the AP but added that officials are discouraging the President from firing any top leaders in the administration, the attorney general in particular, so close to the end of his term.
At Wednesday afternoon’s White House briefing, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany was asked if Trump still has confidence in Barr.
“If the President, if he has any personnel announcements, you’ll be the first to know it,” she said.
McEnany added that she didn’t know if Trump and Barr had spoken, despite Barr’s Tuesday visit to the White House for a “pre-planned meeting with the chief of staff,” where the two “discussed an array of issues.”
Barr’s comments to the AP represented the latest official rebuke from Republicans of the President’s claims of widespread fraud in his loss to Joe Biden.
“To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election,” Barr said.
Barr, who prior to the election had echoed Trump’s claims that mail-in voting wasn’t secure, said both the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security have looked into claims of fraud and come up empty.
Two attorneys working for Trump swiftly rejected Barr’s assessment on Tuesday, repeating their claim that they have “ample evidence of illegal voting in at least six states,” which they say the attorney general isn’t privy to.
Barr’s “opinion appears to be without any knowledge or investigation of the substantial irregularities and evidence of systemic fraud,” attorneys Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis said in a statement.
The lawyers have so far not shown any evidence to back up their claims, which have been rejected by multiple courts in states across the country, and their efforts will soon hit a wall as a number of states — including the key states of Michigan, Georgia and Pennsylvania — have certified or are about to certify their results.
A few other prominent Republican officials have also rejected claims of widespread voter fraud, including Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, who said earlier this week that his state’s elections were secure, drawing condemnation from the President.
Last week, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and Georgia’s secretary of state rejected Trump’s calls for them to overturn the state’s election results, saying their elections were also secure.
This story has been updated with additional information.