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Barr Turns to Jones Day, Trump Official in Jan. 6 Testimony (1)

June 10, 2022, 2:53 PMUpdated: June 10, 2022, 6:12 PM

Former Solicitor General Noel Francisco and law firm Jones Day advised Trump Attorney General William Barr during a closed door deposition with the House committee investigating the US Capitol attack, video footage released Thursday shows.

Barr told the committee he disagreed with former President Donald Trump’s claims that the 2020 election was stolen, a narrative that Barr described as “bull——.”

Francisco and Jones Day partner Eric Snyder flanked him on each side in the video, played during the first of several primetime hearings planned by the committee.

Jones Day is the firm most closely identified with the Trump administration, having fed Francisco, White House Counsel Don McGahn and others to high ranking positions over the four-year stretch. Francisco, as solicitor, was the face of the administration in the Supreme Court.

Barr confirmed that Jones Day, including Francisco and Snyder, had represented him. Jones Day, Francisco and Snyder didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Barr told the panel he left his post as the top DOJ official over the unfounded stolen election claims.

“I didn’t want to be a part of it, and that’s one of the reasons that went into me deciding to leave when I did,” Barr said in the deposition clip. “You can’t live in a world where the incumbent administration stays in power based on its view, unsupported by specific evidence, that there was fraud in the election.”

That Jones Day lawyers served in the Trump administration, or were nominated by Trump for the bench, doesn’t preclude the firm’s representation of Barr, Stephen Gillers, a legal ethics scholar who teaches at New York University School of Law, said in a statement.

The firm does not “adopt Barr’s testimony on its own behalf” by representing him, Gillers said. “This may seem disingenuous to the public, especially in these divisive times, but not to lawyers.”

Francisco left the administration in June 2020, some five months before the presidential election. He is now partner-in-charge of Jones Day’s Washington office.

Snyder handles investigations and white collar defense cases out of the firm’s Washington and New York offices.

(Adds NYU law professor comments in eighth, ninth paragraphs.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Sam Skolnik in Washington at sskolnik@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com; John Hughes at jhughes@bloombergindustry.com