By Becky Garrison
Last week DemocratsAttorney General William Barr of shilling for Donald Trump following his testimony before Congress. While much attention has been paid to his defenses of Trump, there has been very little examination of how Barr’s background as a conservative Catholic informs his current political decisions. To shed some light on this topic, I interviewed , Senior Adviser for Americans United for Separation of Church and State and Editor of Church & State magazine.
What prompted you to write this?
When President Trump named William Barr to be U.S. Attorney General, just about all of the discussion in the media consisted of speculation about how Barr might deal with Robert Mueller’s Russia probe. The Mueller investigation is important, but I knew that as attorney general Barr would be our nation’s top law-enforcement official and would be responsible for lots of different issues, many of which would affect religious freedom. When Barr’s name was floated, I remembered that he held some pretty extreme views on separation of church and state. I thought it was important to bring those to light.
What does Barr’s support for Jeff Sessions signify?
Sessions was always a favorite of the Religious Right. Although the two men have different religious beliefs, their outlooks on church-state separation are very similar. Barr’s support for Sessions is an indication that under his rule, the U.S. Justice Department would continue to pursue policies that weaken church-state separation.
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