On Dec. 14, 2020, the day the Electoral College confirmed Joe BidenJoe BidenBelarusian president says Putin is ‘completely sane’ and ‘in better shape than ever’Arizona Democrat tests positive for COVID-19Thousands of Mariupol residents forcibly taken to Russia, city council saysMOREs victory in the presidential election, William BarrBill BarrThe post-Trump era has begun Democrats urge DOJ to address ‘insider threats’ from candidates who deny 2020 resultsBarr says dealing with Trump, advisers like ‘wrestling an alligator’ MORE released his letter of resignation as attorney general of the United States. He began by expressing appreciation for the opportunity to update President TrumpDonald redirects to Putin’s Wikipedia pageBiden’s ‘cloak of woke’ trade policyGinni Thomas’s activism sparks ethics questions for Supreme Court justiceMORE on the Department of Justices review of voter fraud allegations in the 2020 election and how these allegations will continue to be pursued. The rest of the letter reflected Barrs pride in playing a role in the many successes and unprecedented achievements of the administration, a record that was all the more historic because it was accomplished in the face of relentless, implacable resistance in which no tactic, no matter how abusive or deceitful, was out of bounds.

Despite Trumps tweet claiming our relationship has been a very good one, he has done an outstanding job, it appears the president soured on the attorney general, Charles Pierce wrote in Esquire, because he refused to be in sync with the presidents stalactite-riddled mind on a rigged election or to punch Hunter Bidens ticket to Leavenworth. Pierce cautioned readers, however, against assuming Barr felt a twinge in his largely vestigial political conscience.

One Damn Thing After Another, Barrs memoir about his two tours of duty as attorney general (for Bush 41 and for Trump), demonstrates that in 2022 its déjà vu all over again. Barr acknowledges, then shrugs off, Trumps lies about election fraud and his incitement of an assault on the U.S. Capitol.


Throughout his book Barr expresses no reservations, no second thoughts, entertains no alternatives to what he said and did during his time in office.

A combative, conspiracy-prone ideological extremist, Barr remains convinced the Democratic Party has been taken over by woke radicals who espouse Marxist, racial, gender, and transgender ideologies, guerillas engaged in a war to cripple a duly elected government. Supported by mainstream media, Big Tech and other corporate elites, university administrators and professors, they all according to Barr seek control over every aspect of life, including removal of religion from schools and other public institutions, and demand that students publicly confess their white privilege and identify themselves as oppressors.

Barr also celebrates just about every Trump administration policy, within and beyond his areas of expertise.

Barr gratuitously insults Dr. Anthony FauciAnthony FauciArizona Democrat tests positive for COVID-19Sunday shows preview: Biden calls Putin a war criminal as Ukraine conflict continuesOfficials wary of new COVID-19 surge as country relaxesMORE, ridicules recommendations to follow the science and declares that Trumps substantive pandemic decisions were largely sound.

He doubles down on his groundless claim that sending out mail-in ballots to all and sundry guaranteed that a large portion of them were sent to voters who no longer existed, or who existed in some other place. 

He maintains that Russias leaders no longer promote a revolutionary ideology that foreordains general antagonism with the West. 

However, Barr now publicly acknowledges that Trump often indulges his instinct for pettiness and pointless nastiness, behaves like a hyperactive maniac, engages in habitual hyperbole and imprecision, is incapable of nuance, uses egoistic and fratricidal tactics, indulges petty and personal grievances, attracts voters with low-road pandering, repeatedly insults women based on their personal appearance, insults military heroes John McCainJohn Sidney McCainDemocrats worry Zelensky offered GOP key talking pointGraham invokes McCain in latest call to take out PutinJuan Williams: Biden must rebut GOP attacks on warMORE and Colin PowellColin PowellElton John, Vladimir Putin and my last conversation with Colin PowellMeghan and Harry to receive honor from the NAACP Image AwardsCooper becomes latest House Democrat to not seek reelectionMORE, gets fixated on bad ideas, and turns against just about everyone who works for him. 

Trumps reckless claims of fraud, Barr concludes, are a disservice to the nation and the people who had labored and sacrificed to make his administration a success. The country would descend into chaos, he writes, if an incumbent administration could ignore election results based solely on bald assertions of fraud.

Barr agrees that Trump was responsible in the broad sense of that word for orchestrating a mob to pressure Congress to overturn the results of a free and fair election. He is angry that Trump wrecked Republicans chances to maintain control of the U.S. Senate by petulantly sabotaging the partys candidates in the run-off election in Georgia.

In the final months of his administration, Barr writes, Trump cared only about one thing: himself. Country and principle took second place. 

Convinced that the United States needs a president capable of persuading and attracting, who can frame and advocate for an uplifting vision of what it means to share in American citizen, Barr ends his memoir with the hope that one of an impressive array of younger candidates will get the Republican presidential nomination in 2024.

Belying his reputation for candor, Barrs memoir did not address what he subsequently acknowledged in response to questions from reporters: Its inconceivable that he would vote for anyone but the Republican nominee in 2024 even if its Donald Trump.

After all that, hed vote for Trump to return to the Oval Office.

Does Barr believe Trump did not prioritize himself over country and party during the first three and a half years of his presidency? When the former attorney general recalls his oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States, what I wonder does he think it entails?

Glenn C. Altschuler is the Thomas and Dorothy Litwin Professor of American Studies at Cornell University. He is the co-author (with Stuart Blumin) of “Rude Republic: Americans and Their Politics in the Nineteenth Century.”