President Donald Trump's controversial Attorney General-nominee William Barr is going to appear for a Senate confirmation hearing Jan. 15-16, the Senate Judiciary Committee announced Wednesday.
The nomination came from a joint statement from the outgoing chairman, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, and the incoming chair, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., The Washington Post reported.
"The hearings for the five most recent attorneys general lasted one to two days each," the statement read, per the Post. "Mr. Barr will receive the same fair and thorough vetting process as the last five nominees to be attorney general."
The statement apparently addresses the notion Barr's confirmation might be a contentious one, considering special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into 2016 election meddling and potential Trump campaign coordination with Russia.
Barr, who had previously served as attorney general under late President George H.W. Bush, has been critical of the scope and procedures of the Mueller investigation and has been nominated to replace fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
"Mueller should not be permitted to demand that the president submit to interrogation about alleged obstruction," Barr once wrote in a memo. "Apart from whether Mueller [has] a strong enough factual basis for doing so, Mueller's obstruction theory is fatally misconceived."
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said the "memo reveals that he is fatally conflicted from being able to oversee the special counsel's investigation and he should not be nominated to be attorney general."
President Donald Trump had often said he would have never tapped Sessions for AG if Sessions had been forthright on submitting a recusal from overseeing the FBI investigation into Russia's election meddling efforts, including Mueller.
Also, Barr is expected to back away from prior criticism of an anti-fraud law that allows private individuals to bring lawsuits on behalf of the government, a source familiar with the matter said Wednesday.
Barr will clarify his current thinking on the U.S. False Claims Act, which he has previously called an unconstitutional "abomination," when he goes before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, the source said.
The law allows whistleblowers who expose fraud against the U.S. government to bring private lawsuits and keep a percentage of any damages awarded.
Material from Reuters and Bloomberg News was used in this report.
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