WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump declined Thursday to say whether he still has confidence in William Barr after the attorney general said in an interview this week that he had not seen election fraud on a scale that would alter the results.

“Ask me that in a number of weeks from now,” Trump told reporters at an Oval Office event when asked whether he retains confidence in Barr. “They should be looking at all of this fraud. . . . This is very bad criminal fraud.”

Trump spoke to reporters after an event at which he presented longtime college football coach Lou Holtz the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Donald Trump, William Barr

President Donald Trump and Attorney General William Barr in the James Brady Briefing Room in Washington in March. AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File

Asked about Barr’s statements in an Associated Press interview, Trump said: “He hasn’t done anything. He hasn’t looked. . . . They haven’t looked very hard, which is a disappointment, to be honest with you.”

Trump remains livid at Barr, with one senior administration official indicating that Barr could be fired – not just for his public comments undercutting Trump’s unfounded claims of election-shifting fraud, but also for steps he did not take on a probe of the FBI’s 2016 investigation into Trump’s campaign. The person said several people are trying to persuade the president not to do so. Like others, this official spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

On Wednesday, people familiar with the matter said Trump continued to complain about his attorney general, citing his comments from a day earlier that Barr had “not seen fraud on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election,” among other matters.

Speaking to reporters Thursday, Trump expressed disbelief that Biden had made up substantial ground in several battleground states based on mail-in ballots that were not tabulated until after the election.

“I’ll just say this. We went through an election,” Trump said. “At 10 o’clock everybody said that was an easy victory for Trump. All of a sudden the votes started disappearing. Miraculously disappearing.”

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