United States Attorney General

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United States Attorney General
Seal of the United States Department of Justice.svg
Seal of the Department of Justice
Flag of the United States Attorney General.svg
Flag of the Attorney General
William Barr (cropped).jpg
William Barr

since February 14, 2019
United States Department of Justice
Style Mr. Attorney General
Member of Cabinet
Reports to President of the United States
Seat Department of Justice Headquarters
Washington, D.C.
AppointerThe President
with Senate advice and consent
Term length No Fixed Term
Constituting instrument 28 U.S.C.   § 503
FormationSeptember 26, 1789
First holder Edmund Randolph
Succession Seventh [1]
Deputy Deputy Attorney General
Salary Executive Schedule, level I [2]
Website www.justice.gov

The United States Attorney General (A.G.) is the head of the U.S. Department of Justice, a member of the U.S. president's Cabinet, and the chief lawyer of the federal government of the United States.

United States Department of Justice U.S. federal executive department in charge of law enforcement

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ), also known as the Justice Department, is a federal executive department of the U.S. government, responsible for the enforcement of the law and administration of justice in the United States, equivalent to the justice or interior ministries of other countries. The department was formed in 1870 during the Ulysses S. Grant administration.

Cabinet of the United States Advisory body to the president of the United States

The Cabinet of the United States is part of the executive branch of the federal government of the United States. The Cabinet's role, inferred from the language of the Opinion Clause of the Constitution, is to serve as an advisory body to the president of the United States. Additionally, the Twenty-fifth Amendment authorizes the vice president, together with a majority of certain members of the Cabinet, to declare the president "unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office". Among the senior officers of the Cabinet are the vice president and the secretary of state and other heads of the federal executive departments, all of whom—if eligible—are in the line of succession. Members of the Cabinet serve at the pleasure of the president, who can dismiss them at will for no cause. All federal public officials, including Cabinet members, are also subject to impeachment by the House of Representatives and trial in the Senate for "treason, bribery, and other high crimes and misdemeanors".

Federal government of the United States National government of the United States

The federal government of the United States is the national government of the United States, a federal republic in North America, composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories and several island possessions. The federal government is composed of three distinct branches: legislative, executive and judicial, whose powers are vested by the U.S. Constitution in the Congress, the president and the federal courts, respectively. The powers and duties of these branches are further defined by acts of Congress, including the creation of executive departments and courts inferior to the Supreme Court.


Under the Appointments Clause of the United States Constitution, the officeholder is nominated by the President of the United States and appointed with the advice and consent of the United States Senate. In cases of the federal death penalty, the power to seek the death penalty rests with the U.S. Attorney General.

Appointments Clause Clause of the U.S. Constitution granting the President the right to appoint posts with the Senates advice and consent

The Appointments Clause is part of Article II, Section 2, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution, which empowers the President of the United States to nominate and, with the advice and consent (confirmation) of the United States Senate, appoint public officials. Although the Senate must confirm certain principal officers, Congress may by law delegate the Senate's advice and consent role when it comes to "inferior" officers.

President of the United States Head of state and of government of the United States

The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces.

United States Senate Upper house of the United States Congress

The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress which, along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol Building, in Washington, D.C.

The 85th and current United States Attorney General is William Barr. [3]

William Barr 77th and 85th United States Attorney General

William "Bill" Pelham Barr is an American lawyer and government official serving as the 85th United States Attorney General, in the Donald Trump administration since February 14, 2019. He also served as the 77th Attorney General from 1991 to 1993, in the George H. W. Bush administration.


Congress passed the Judiciary Act of 1789 which, among other things, established the Office of the Attorney General. The original duties of this officer were "to prosecute and conduct all suits in the Supreme Court in which the United States shall be concerned, and to give his advice and opinion upon questions of law when required by the President of the United States, or when requested by the heads of any of the departments". [4]

United States Congress Legislature of the United States

The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States, and consists of two chambers: the House of Representatives and the Senate. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. Both senators and representatives are chosen through direct election, though vacancies in the Senate may be filled by a gubernatorial appointment. Congress has 535 voting members: 435 representatives and 100 senators. The House of Representatives has six non-voting members representing Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the District of Columbia in addition to its 435 voting members. Although they cannot vote in the full house, these members can address the house, sit and vote in congressional committees, and introduce legislation.

Judiciary Act of 1789

The Judiciary Act of 1789 was a United States federal statute adopted on September 24, 1789, in the first session of the First United States Congress. It established the federal judiciary of the United States. Article III, Section 1 of the Constitution prescribed that the "judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and such inferior Courts" as Congress saw fit to establish. It made no provision for the composition or procedures of any of the courts, leaving this to Congress to decide.

Supreme Court of the United States Highest court in the United States

The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) is the highest court in the federal judiciary of the United States of America, established pursuant to Article III of the U.S. Constitution in 1789. It has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all federal and state court cases that involve a point of federal law, and original jurisdiction over a narrow range of cases, including suits between two or more states and those involving ambassadors. The Court holds the power of judicial review, the ability to invalidate a statute for violating a provision of the Constitution. Presidential directives can be struck down by the Court for violating either the Constitution or statutory law. However, it may act only within the context of a case in an area of law over which it has jurisdiction. The Court may decide cases having political overtones, but it has ruled that it does not have power to decide non-justiciable political questions.

The Department of Justice was established in 1870 to support the Attorney General in the discharge of their responsibilities.

The Attorney General, the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, and the Secretary of Defense are generally regarded as the four most important Cabinet officials in the United States because of the significance and age of their respective departments. [5]

United States Secretary of State U.S. cabinet member and head of the U.S. State Department

The secretary of state is a senior official of the federal government of the United States of America, and as head of the United States Department of State, is principally concerned with foreign policy and is considered to be the U.S. government's minister of foreign affairs.

United States Secretary of the Treasury Government position

The secretary of the treasury is the head of the United States Department of the Treasury which is concerned with all financial and monetary matters relating to the federal government, and, until 2003, also included several major federal law enforcement agencies. This position in the federal government of the United States is analogous to the minister of finance in many other countries. The secretary of the treasury is a member of the president's Cabinet, and is nominated by the president of the United States. Nominees for secretary of the treasury undergo a confirmation hearing before the United States Senate Committee on Finance before being voted on by the United States Senate.

United States Secretary of Defense Leader of the United States armed forces following the president

The secretary of defense (SecDef) is the leader and chief executive officer of the United States Department of Defense, the executive department of the Armed Forces of the U.S. The secretary of defense's position of command and authority over the U.S. military is second only to that of the president and Congress, respectively. This position corresponds to what is generally known as a defense minister in many other countries. The secretary of defense is appointed by the president with the advice and consent of the Senate, and is by custom a member of the Cabinet and by law a member of the National Security Council.

The title "Attorney General" is an example of a noun (attorney) followed by a postpositive adjective (general). [6] "General" is a description of the type of attorney, not a title or rank in itself (as it would be in the military). [6] Even though the Attorney General (and the similarly titled Solicitor General) is often referred to as "General" or "General [last name]" by senior government officials, this is considered incorrect in standard American English usage. [6] [7] For the same reason, the correct American English plural form is "attorneys general" rather than "attorney generals." [7]

Presidential transition

It is the practice for the Attorney General, along with the other Cabinet secretaries and high-level political appointees of the President, to give resignation with effect on the Inauguration Day (January 20) of a new President. The Deputy Attorney General, who is also expected to tender their resignation, is commonly requested to stay on and act as Attorney General pending the confirmation by the Senate of the new Attorney General.

For example, on the inauguration of President Donald Trump on January 20, 2017, the then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch left her position, so the then-Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, who had also tendered her resignation, was asked to stay on to serve as Acting Attorney General until the confirmation of the new Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who had been nominated for the office in November 2016 by then-President-elect Donald Trump. [8] [lower-alpha 1]

List of Attorneys General


   Federalist (4)    Democratic-Republican (5)    Democratic (33)    Whig (4)    Republican (39)

  Denotes service as acting Attorneys General prior to appointment or after resignation
No.PortraitNameState of ResidenceTook officeLeft office President(s)
1 EdRand.jpg Edmund Randolph Virginia September 26, 1789January 26, 1794 George Washington
2 William Bradford, AG.jpg William Bradford Pennsylvania January 27, 1794August 23, 1795
3 Charles Lee, AG.png Charles Lee Virginia December 10, 1795February 19, 1801
John Adams
4 Levi Lincoln, Sr.jpg Levi Lincoln Sr. Massachusetts March 5, 1801March 2, 1805 Thomas Jefferson
5 John Breckinridge.jpg John Breckinridge Kentucky August 7, 1805December 14, 1806
6 Rodneycaesara3.jpg Caesar Augustus Rodney Delaware January 20, 1807December 10, 1811
James Madison
7 Williampinkney (1).jpg William Pinkney Maryland December 11, 1811February 9, 1814
8 Richard Rush engraving.png Richard Rush Pennsylvania February 10, 1814November 12, 1817
9 Attorney General William Wirt.jpg William Wirt Virginia November 13, 1817March 4, 1829 James Monroe
John Quincy Adams
10 John Macpherson Berrien, portrait by John Maier.png John Macpherson Berrien Georgia March 9, 1829July 19, 1831 Andrew Jackson
11 Roger Taney.jpg Roger B. Taney Maryland July 20, 1831November 14, 1833
12 Benjamin Franklin Butler (1795-1858).jpg Benjamin Franklin Butler New York November 15, 1833July 4, 1838
Martin Van Buren
13 Felix Grundy.jpg Felix Grundy Tennessee July 5, 1838January 10, 1840
14 Henry D. Gilpin, Attorney General of the United States (trimmed).jpg Henry D. Gilpin Pennsylvania January 11, 1840March 4, 1841
15 John Jordan Crittenden - Brady 1855.jpg John J. Crittenden
1st Term
Kentucky March 5, 1841September 12, 1841 William Henry Harrison
John Tyler
16 Hugh S. Legare.jpg Hugh S. Legaré South Carolina September 13, 1841June 20, 1843
17 John Nelson, bw photo portrait, Brady-Handy collection, circa 1855-1865.jpg John Nelson Maryland July 1, 1843March 4, 1845
18 JYMason.jpg John Y. Mason Virginia March 5, 1845October 16, 1846 James K. Polk
19 NClifford.jpg Nathan Clifford Maine October 17, 1846March 17, 1848
20 Isaac Toucey - Brady-Handy.jpg Isaac Toucey Connecticut June 21, 1848March 4, 1849
21 Reverdy Johnson.jpg Reverdy Johnson Maryland March 8, 1849July 21, 1850 Zachary Taylor
22 John Jordan Crittenden - Brady 1855.jpg John J. Crittenden
2nd Term
Kentucky July 22, 1850March 4, 1853 Millard Fillmore
23 Caleb Cushing.jpg Caleb Cushing Massachusetts March 7, 1853March 4, 1857 Franklin Pierce
24 JSBlack-AG.jpg Jeremiah S. Black Pennsylvania March 6, 1857December 16, 1860 James Buchanan
25 Edwin McMasters Stanton Secretary of War.jpg Edwin Stanton Pennsylvania December 20, 1860March 4, 1861
26 Edward Bates - Brady-Handy.jpg Edward Bates Missouri March 5, 1861November 24, 1864 Abraham Lincoln
27 James Speed.jpg James Speed Kentucky December 2, 1864July 22, 1866
Andrew Johnson
28 Stanberry-AttorGen.jpg Henry Stanbery Ohio July 23, 1866July 16, 1868
29 William M. Evarts - Brady-Handy.jpg William M. Evarts New York July 17, 1868March 4, 1869
30 EbenezerRHoar.jpg Ebenezer R. Hoar Massachusetts March 5, 1869November 22, 1870 Ulysses S. Grant
31 Amos T Akerman - crop and minor retouch.jpg Amos T. Akerman Georgia November 23, 1870December 13, 1871
32 George Henry Williams - Brady-Handy - Restored & Cropped.jpg George Henry Williams Oregon December 14, 1871April 25, 1875
33 Edwards Pierrepont, Brady-Handy bw photo portrait, ca1865-1880.jpg Edwards Pierrepont New York April 26, 1875May 21, 1876
34 Alphonso Taft seated.jpg Alphonso Taft Ohio (born in Vermont)May 22, 1876March 4, 1877
35 Hon. Charles Devens of Mass. Atty Gen. Hayes Cabinet.png Charles Devens Massachusetts March 12, 1877March 4, 1881 Rutherford B. Hayes
36 Wayne MacVeagh - Brady-Handy.jpg Wayne MacVeagh Pennsylvania March 5, 1881December 15, 1881 James A. Garfield
Chester A. Arthur
37 BenjaminHBrewster.jpg Benjamin H. Brewster Pennsylvania December 16, 1881March 4, 1885
38 Augustus Hill Garland - Brady-Handy.jpg Augustus Garland Arkansas March 6, 1885March 4, 1889 Grover Cleveland
39 WHHMiller.jpg William H. H. Miller Indiana March 7, 1889March 4, 1893 Benjamin Harrison
40 Richard Olney, Bain bw photo portrait, 1913.jpg Richard Olney Massachusetts March 6, 1893April 7, 1895 Grover Cleveland
41 Jud Harmon.jpg Judson Harmon Ohio April 8, 1895March 4, 1897
42 AssoJstcJMcK.jpg Joseph McKenna California March 5, 1897January 25, 1898 William McKinley
43 Griggs2.jpg John W. Griggs New Jersey January 25, 1898March 29, 1901
44 Philander Knox, bw photo portrait, 1904.jpg Philander C. Knox Pennsylvania April 5, 1901June 30, 1904
Theodore Roosevelt
45 WHMoody.jpg William Henry Moody Massachusetts July 1, 1904December 17, 1906
46 CJBonaparte.jpg Charles Bonaparte Maryland December 17, 1906March 4, 1909
47 GWWickersham.jpg George W. Wickersham New York March 4, 1909March 4, 1913 William Howard Taft
48 James C. McReynolds - c1913.jpg James C. McReynolds Tennessee March 5, 1913August 29, 1914 Woodrow Wilson
49 WP Thomas Watt Gregory.jpg Thomas Watt Gregory Texas August 29, 1914March 4, 1919
50 Alexander Mitchell Palmer.jpg A. Mitchell Palmer Pennsylvania March 5, 1919March 4, 1921
51 Harry Daugherty, bw photo portrait 1920.jpg Harry M. Daugherty Ohio March 4, 1921April 6, 1924 Warren G. Harding
Calvin Coolidge
52 Chief Justice Harlan Fiske Stone photograph circa 1927-1932.jpg Harlan F. Stone New York April 7, 1924March 1, 1925
53 John Sargent, Bain bw photo portrait.jpg John G. Sargent Vermont March 7, 1925March 4, 1929
54 William D. Mitchell cph.3b30394.jpg William D. Mitchell Minnesota March 4, 1929March 4, 1933 Herbert Hoover
55 Homer Cummings, Harris & Ewing photo portrait, 1920.jpg Homer Stille Cummings Connecticut March 4, 1933January 1, 1939 Franklin D. Roosevelt
56 Justice Frank Murphy.jpg Frank Murphy Michigan January 2, 1939January 18, 1940
57 Roberthjackson.jpg Robert H. Jackson New York January 18, 1940August 25, 1941
58 Francis Biddle cph.3b27524.jpg Francis Biddle Pennsylvania August 26, 1941June 26, 1945
Harry S Truman
59 Tom C. Clark.gif Tom C. Clark Texas June 27, 1945July 26, 1949
60 J. Howard McGrath.jpg J. Howard McGrath Rhode Island July 27, 1949April 3, 1952
61 James P McGranery cropped.jpg James P. McGranery Pennsylvania April 4, 1952January 20, 1953
62 Herbert Brownell.jpg Herbert Brownell Jr. New York January 21, 1953October 23, 1957 Dwight D. Eisenhower
63 William P. Rogers, U.S. Secretary of State.jpg William P. Rogers New York October 23, 1957January 20, 1961
64 Robert F Kennedy crop.jpg Robert F. Kennedy Massachusetts January 20, 1961September 3, 1964 John F. Kennedy
Lyndon B. Johnson
65 Nicholas Katzenbach at White House, 6 May 1968.jpg Nicholas Katzenbach Illinois September 4, 1964 [lower-alpha 2] January 28, 1965
January 28, 1965November 28, 1966
66 Ramsey Clark at the White House, 28 Feb 1968.jpg Ramsey Clark Texas November 28, 1966 [lower-alpha 2] March 10, 1967
March 10, 1967January 20, 1969
67 John Mitchell.jpg John N. Mitchell New York January 20, 1969February 15, 1972 Richard Nixon
68 Attorney General Richard Kleindienst.jpg Richard Kleindienst Arizona February 15, 1972April 30, 1973 [10]
69 ElliotLeeRichardson.jpg Elliot Richardson Massachusetts April 30, 1973 [10] October 20, 1973
Robert Bork.jpg Robert Bork [lower-alpha 3]
Pennsylvania October 20, 1973January 4, 1974
70 WilliamBartSaxbe2.jpg William B. Saxbe Ohio January 4, 1974January 14, 1975
Gerald Ford
71 Edward Levi Attorney General.jpg Edward H. Levi Illinois January 14, 1975January 20, 1977
Dick Thornburgh.jpg Dick Thornburgh [lower-alpha 4]
Pennsylvania January 20, 1977January 26, 1977 Jimmy Carter
72 Attorney General Griffin Bell.jpg Griffin Bell Georgia January 26, 1977August 16, 1979
73 Benjamin Civiletti (1979).jpg Benjamin Civiletti Maryland August 16, 1979January 19, 1981
74 Portrait officiel de William French Smith.jpg William French Smith California January 23, 1981February 25, 1985 Ronald Reagan
75 Portraits of Assistants to President Ronald Reagan (cropped12).jpg Edwin Meese California February 25, 1985August 12, 1988
76 Dick Thornburgh.jpg Dick Thornburgh Pennsylvania August 12, 1988August 15, 1991
George H. W. Bush
77 William Barr, official photo as Attorney General.jpg William Barr
1st Term
Washington, D.C. August 16, 1991 [lower-alpha 2] November 26, 1991
November 26, 1991January 20, 1993
Stuart M. Gerson [lower-alpha 5]
Washington, D.C. January 20, 1993March 12, 1993 Bill Clinton
78 Janet Reno-us-Portrait.jpg Janet Reno Florida March 12, 1993January 20, 2001
HolderEric.jpg Eric Holder [lower-alpha 6]
Washington, D.C. January 20, 2001February 2, 2001 George W. Bush
79 John Ashcroft.jpg John Ashcroft Missouri February 2, 2001February 3, 2005
80 Alberto Gonzales - official DoJ photograph.jpg Alberto Gonzales Texas February 3, 2005September 17, 2007
Paul D. Clement.jpg Paul Clement [lower-alpha 7]
Washington, D.C.September 17, 2007September 18, 2007
Peterkeisler.jpg Peter Keisler [lower-alpha 7]
Washington, D.C.September 18, 2007November 9, 2007
81 Michael Mukasey, official AG photo portrait, 2007.jpg Michael Mukasey New York November 9, 2007January 20, 2009
Mark Filip.jpg Mark Filip
Illinois January 20, 2009February 3, 2009 Barack Obama
82 Eric Holder official portrait (cropped).jpg Eric Holder Washington, D.C. February 3, 2009April 27, 2015
83 Loretta Lynch, official portrait (cropped).jpg Loretta Lynch New York April 27, 2015January 20, 2017
Sally Q. Yates (cropped).jpg Sally Yates [lower-alpha 8]
Georgia January 20, 2017January 30, 2017 Donald Trump
Dana Boente (cropped).jpg Dana Boente
Virginia January 30, 2017February 9, 2017
84 Jeff Sessions, official portrait (cropped).jpg Jeff Sessions Alabama February 9, 2017November 7, 2018
Matthew G. Whitaker official photo (cropped).jpg Matthew Whitaker
Acting [lower-alpha 9]
Iowa November 7, 2018February 14, 2019
85 William Barr (cropped).jpg William Barr
2nd Term
Virginia February 14, 2019Incumbent

Living former U.S. Attorneys General

As of August 2019, there are ten living former US Attorneys General, the oldest being Ramsey Clark (served 1967–1969, born 1927). The most recent Attorney General to die was Janet Reno on November 7, 2016 (served 1993–2001, born 1938). William Barr, who served from 1991–1993, returned to the post and is currently serving, excluding him from this list.

NameTerm of officeDate of birth (and age)
Ramsey Clark 1967–1969December 18, 1927 (age 91)
Benjamin Civiletti 1979–1981July 17, 1935 (age 84)
Edwin Meese 1985–1988December 2, 1931 (age 87)
Dick Thornburgh 1988–1991July 16, 1932 (age 87)
John Ashcroft 2001–2005May 9, 1942 (age 77)
Alberto Gonzales 2005–2007August 4, 1955 (age 64)
Michael Mukasey 2007–2009July 28, 1941 (age 78)
Eric Holder 2009–2015January 21, 1951 (age 68)
Loretta Lynch 2015–2017May 21, 1959 (age 60)
Jeff Sessions 2017–2018December 24, 1946 (age 72)

Line of succession

U.S.C. Title 28, §508 establishes the first two positions in the line of succession, while allowing the Attorney General to designate other high-ranking officers of the Department of Justice as subsequent successors. [24] Furthermore, an Executive Order defines subsequent positions, the most recent from March 31, 2017, signed by President Donald Trump. [25] The current line of succession is:

  1. United States Deputy Attorney General
  2. United States Associate Attorney General
  3. Other Officers potentially designated by the Attorney General (in no particular order):
  4. United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia
  5. United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina
  6. United States Attorney for the Northern District of Texas

See also


  1. Unusually for a transitional acting appointment, Yates was dismissed and replaced with another Acting Attorney General before Sessions was confirmed because she refused to defend an executive order of the incoming administration. [9]
  2. 1 2 3 Served as acting attorney general in his capacity as deputy attorney general, until his own appointment and confirmation as attorney general.
  3. On October 20, 1973, Solicitor General Robert Bork became acting attorney general following the "Saturday Night Massacre", in which U.S. Attorney General Elliot Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus both resigned.
  4. Served as acting attorney general in his capacity as deputy attorney general, until the appointment of a new attorney general. Thornburgh later served as attorney general from 1988–1991.
  5. Served as acting attorney general in his capacity as Assistant Attorney General for the DOJ Civil Division. [11] [12] Gerson was fourth in the line of succession at the Justice Department, but other senior DOJ officials had already resigned. [13] Janet Reno, President Clinton's nominee for attorney general, was confirmed on March 12, [14] and he resigned the same day. [14]
  6. Served as acting attorney general in his capacity as deputy attorney general, until the appointment of a new attorney general. Holder later served as attorney general from 2009–2015.
  7. 1 2 On August 27, 2007, President Bush named Solicitor General Paul Clement as the future acting attorney general, to take office upon the resignation of Alberto Gonzales, effective September 17, 2007. [15] On September 17, President Bush announced that Assistant Attorney General for the DOJ Civil Division Peter Keisler would become acting attorney general, pending a permanent appointment of a presidential nominee. [16] [17] According to administration officials, Clement became acting attorney general at 12:01 am September 17, 2007, and left office 24 hours later. [18] Keisler served as acting attorney general until the confirmation of Michael Mukasey on November 9, 2007.
  8. Served as acting attorney general in her capacity as deputy attorney general, until she was fired after stating that the Department of Justice would not defend an executive order in court. [19]
  9. The legality of Matthew Whitaker's appointment as Acting Attorney General was called into question by several constitutional scholars. Among those included Neal Katyal and George T. Conway III, who asserted it is unconstitutional, because the Attorney General is a principal officer under the Appointments Clause, and thus requires senate consent, even in an acting capacity. [20] Maryland filed an injunction against Whitaker's appointment on this basis. [21] John E. Bies at Lawfare regarded it as an unresolved question. [22] The DOJ Office of Legal Counsel released a legal opinion, asserting that the appointment was legal and consistent with past precedent. [23]

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  1. "3 U.S. Code § 19 - Vacancy in offices of both President and Vice President; officers eligible to act" . Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  2. 5 U.S.C.   § 5312.
  3. Fandos, Nicholas; Benner, Katie (February 14, 2019). "Senate Confirms William Barr as Attorney General". The New York Times. ISSN   0362-4331 . Retrieved February 14, 2019.
  4. Judiciary Act of 1789, section 35.
  5. Cabinets and Counselors: The President and the Executive Branch (1997). Congressional Quarterly. p. 87.
  6. 1 2 3 Herz, Michael (2002). "Washington, Patton, Schwarzkopf and ... Ashcroft?". Constitutional Commentary.
  7. 1 2 Garner, Bryan A. "LawProse Lesson #116: What's the plural form of attorney general? And what is the plural possessive?". Above the Law. Retrieved May 31, 2019.
  8. Gerstein, Josh. "Trump will allow U.S. attorneys to stay past Friday". POLITICO. Retrieved July 25, 2019.
  9. Horwitz, Sari (January 30, 2017). "Who is Sally Yates? Meet the acting attorney general Trump fired for 'betraying' the Justice Department". Washington Post. Retrieved July 25, 2019.
  10. 1 2 Stern, Laurence; Johnson, Haynes (May 1, 1973). "3 Top Nixon Aides, Kleindienst Out; President Accepts Full Responsibility; Richardson Will Conduct New Probe". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  11. Cahoon, Ben (2000). "United States Government". World Statesmen. Retrieved December 12, 2008. January 20, 1993 – March 12, 1993 Stuart M. Gerson (acting) (b. 1944)
  12. Staff reporter (February 21, 1993). "Stuart Gerson's Parting Shot". New York Times. Retrieved December 12, 2008. As supporters of the Brady gun-control bill prepare to introduce it in Congress yet again this week, they find a welcome, if unlikely, ally in Stuart Gerson, the Acting Attorney General. Because President Clinton has had so many problems finding a new Attorney General, Mr. Gerson remains in office...
  13. Labaton, Stephen (January 25, 1993). "Notes on Justice; Who's in Charge? Bush Holdover Says He Is, but Two Clinton Men Differ". The New York Times. Retrieved December 12, 2008.
  14. 1 2 Ifill, Gwen (March 12, 1993). "Reno Confirmed in Top Justice Job". New York Times. Retrieved December 12, 2008. She will replace Acting Attorney General Stuart M. Gerson, a holdover appointee from the Bush Administration. Ms. Reno said he resigned today.
  15. Meyers, Steven Lee (August 27, 2007). "Embattled Attorney General Resigns". The New York Times. Retrieved August 27, 2007.
  16. "President Bush Announces Judge Michael Mukasey as Nominee for Attorney General", White House press release, September 17, 2007
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  23. CNN, Laura Jarrett,. "DOJ says Whitaker's appointment as acting attorney general is constitutional". CNN. Retrieved November 15, 2018.
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  25. "Providing an Order of Succession Within the Department of Justice". Federal Register. April 5, 2017. Retrieved June 14, 2018.
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Mark Esper
as Secretary of Defense
Order of Precedence of the United States
as Attorney General
Succeeded by
David Bernhardt
as Secretary of the Interior
U.S. presidential line of succession
Preceded by
Secretary of Defense
Mark Esper
7th in lineSucceeded by
Secretary of the Interior
David Bernhardt