Tags: william barr | steve marshall | alabama

Barr and Alabama AG Marshall to Restore Broken Justice Systems

Barr and Alabama AG Marshall to Restore Broken Justice Systems
U.S. Attorney General William Barr speaks during a press conference about the release of the Mueller Report at the Department of Justice April 18, 2019, in Washington, D.C. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

By Wednesday, 24 April 2019 01:05 PM Current | Bio | Archive

The Mueller investigation has come to a close, and all eyes are on newly minted Attorney General William Barr as the report is released to the public.

Barr has taken over in the midst of a tumultuous time at the Justice Department.

The Department’s blatant mishandling of recent high-profile investigations and repeated attacks from the president have left Americans with a lack of trust in the justice system that hasn’t been seen in decades. As Barr navigates through the storm of the Mueller investigation, his next task will be to right the ship and restore trust in the Justice Department.

In my home state of Alabama, our Attorney General Steve Marshall faced a similar politically tumultuous predicament as he took office in 2017. At that time, the political machine in Alabama was racked with scandal.

Marshall’s predecessor, Luther Strange, had opened an investigation into “Luv Guv” Robert Bentley’s sex scandal. However, shortly after the investigation began, Bentley appointed Strange to the Alabama Senate seat left vacant by Barr’s predecessor, Jeff Sessions.

This apparent political back dealing caused many Alabamians to lose confidence in their Justice Department. Many questioned whether or not Marshall would have the tenacity to operate in the face of a corrupt governor. However, Marshall rose to the occasion. He recused himself from the investigation and allowed the Special Prosecutions Division to move forward. But unlike Trump who was exonerated, our Governor Robert Bentley ultimately plead guilty to corruption charges. Marshall has won the loyalty of many Republicans and independents but the Democrats in our states are making the same accusations of bias that are being made again AG Barr.

Barr’s return to the Attorney General’s office has taken a similar direction.

He was pulled out of semi-retirement by a desire to guide the Justice Department through an inflection point in its history. It appears that Barr hopes to restore morale in the Department’s employees who have borne the brunt of many political attacks. Indeed, even though his plate has been filled with Congressional hearings on the Mueller report, Barr has made a concerted effort to familiarize himself with cases and legal arguments. Officials say Barr wishes to restore the Department’s allegiance to the rule of law.

Barr’s policies are quite similar to Marshall’s, reflecting the importance of these issues not just in certain states but across the country. His appointment demonstrates the Trump administration’s continued dedication to combatting the significant increase in violent crime, the rising death toll caused by the opioid crisis, and the emergency at our southern border.

The truth is, many of these issues cannot be addressed by the state or federal governments alone. It is reassuring to see state officials like Marshall work closely with the federal government so ensure the safety and protection of its citizens. For instance, Marshall has served as a co-chair on Governor Ivey’s Alabama Opioid Overdose & Addiction Council. That council spent six months researching and debating the different approaches to combat rampant opioid abuse in the state. It recommended a robust partnership between law enforcement, mental and public health officials, education centers, and faith communities. Alabama is also working in concert with other states to challenge Obamacare, protect religious freedom, and secure second amendment rights.

These state-level efforts allow lawmakers to imagine a diverse set of solutions to a shared predicament. They enable states to serve in their role as the “laboratories of democracy” that Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis argued is the backbone of our system of government. When they are free from political scandal and attack, state Justice Departments have a critical role in formulating policies that are later adopted by federal officials like Attorney General Barr.

As the Mueller report finally comes to a close and Alabama continues to move on from the scourge of the Bentley years, Barr and Marshall will be able to fully focus on restoring confidence in their respective departments. The best way to return to a sense of normalcy is to focus on the issues affecting the lives of every American. An attorney general’s role is to protect its citizens first and foremost. There are no two men better suited for their respective jobs than William Barr and Steve Marshall.

Special thanks to Daniel Bruce, my law firm manager, for his help in writing, researching, and editing this article.

Christopher Reid is an attorney out of Birmingham who owns his own general practice law firm, which handles Business, Family, and Probate Law and high-end litigation throughout the state of Alabama. Reid has held various policy positions, including working for the Alabama Policy Institute and the Heritage Foundation in Washington D.C., where he also worked for House Republican Whip Roy Blunt. In law school, he clerked for the Alabama Attorney General Office, and, after graduation, he became Health and Judiciary Policy Analyst for Alabama’s governor. His charitable work includes serving on the board of Sav-A-Life. Chris is a frequent co-host on The Scott Beason Show in Birmingham, writes political and legal commentary for publications including The Hill, The Washington Examiner, and has been quoted in The New Yorker. He regularly provides on-air expertise and political commentary for TV news shows on Fox, NBC, and Newsmax with JD Hayworth. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

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The Mueller investigation has come to a close, and all eyes are on newly minted Attorney General William Barr as the report is released to the public.
william barr, steve marshall, alabama
Wednesday, 24 April 2019 01:05 PM
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