U.S. Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday broadly defended the role of politically appointed leaders in law enforcement, arguing that the decisions of career prosecutors have been wrongly cast as “sacrosanct,” in an implicit defense of his interventions in cases to help allies of President Donald Trump.

Referring to career prosecutors as “generally part of the permanent bureaucracy,” Barr said those lower-level officials lack the “political legitimacy” to serve as the face for difficult decisions.

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