President-elect Joe Biden on Tuesday said the “attorney general of the United States of America is not the president’s lawyer,” when asked if the federal investigation into his son Hunter Biden was brought up during discussions with his team and in meetings with candidates for U.S. attorney general.
“No, no. I guarantee you I’m going to do what I said,” when asked by a reporter about if the ongoing investigation into Hunter Biden’s taxes came up in those talks related to picking who will eventually become his U.S. attorney general.
“The attorney general of the United States of America is not the president’s lawyer,” the president-elect said. “I will appoint someone who I expect to enforce the law as the law is written, not guided by me.”
Biden, however, is unlikely to pick his attorney general before Christmas, a person familiar with the matter told CNN on Tuesday.
A person often cited as the leading contender to be Biden’s nominee for the job is recently ousted Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.), who is also the former U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Alabama. Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez and former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates have also been cited as being in contention for the role.
The outgoing attorney general, William Barr, who recently resigned, has been a source of controversy for the Trump administration by critics for engaging in conduct seen as being overly protective of President Donald Trump and his administration. However, Trump has been at odds with Barr for failing to complete the Durham probe into the FBI’s conduct during Robert Mueller’s Russia probe. before the end of his term and for failing to fully investigate the 2020 election.
Monday this week, in the lead-up to his departure, Barr said he would not appoint a special counsel to investigate neither Hunter Biden nor Trump’s so far unsubstantiated allegations of widespread election fraud in the 2020 presidential election.
You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.