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Barr authorizes probes of vote irregularities

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U.S. Attorney General William Barr gave the green light to federal prosecutors on Monday (November 9), to look into "substantial" allegations of voting irregularities.

It comes off the back of President Donald Trump's re-election campaign filing a lawsuit trying to block Pennsylvania officials from certifying President-elect Joe Biden's victory in the state.

Just hours later, Barr's authorization led the DOJ official who oversees voter fraud investigations, Richard Pilger, to step down from his post.

That's according to an internal email seen by Reuters, where Pilger, who worked in the post for over a decade, wrote that "Having familiarized myself with the new policy and its ramifications… I must regretfully resign."

Democrats and the Biden campaign said Barr was fueling the very far-fetched claims, he claimed he was guarding against.

Bob Bauer, a senior Biden adviser said that "those are the very kind of claims that the president and his lawyers are making unsuccessfully every day, as their lawsuits are laughed out of one court after another."

Monday marked the first time Barr has addressed claims of voter fraud since the election.

In his letter to federal prosecutors and the FBI, he also stressed that they shouldn't pursue "fanciful or far-fetched claims."

Trump has repeatedly claimed without evidence that there was widespread voter fraud and in a Monday letter, his campaign alleged that Pennsylvania's mail-in voting system violated the Constitution.

The campaign says it was quote "an illegal two-tiered voting system" where voting in-person was subject to more oversight than voting by mail.

Trump had not conceded the election to Biden two days after the Democrat secured the 270 electoral votes needed to win.

Video Transcript

WILLIAM BARR: We don't-- we haven't had to put in the kind of--

- US Attorney General William Barr gave the green light to federal prosecutors on Monday to look into, quote, "substantial allegations" of voting irregularities. It comes off the back of President Donald Trump's re-election campaign filing a lawsuit, trying to block Pennsylvania officials from certifying President-elect Joe Biden's victory in the state.

Just hours later, Barr's authorization led the DOJ official who oversees voter fraud investigations, Richard Pilger, to step down from his post. That's according to an internal email seen by Reuters, where Pilger, who worked in the post for over a decade, wrote that, quote, "having familiarized myself with the new policy and its ramifications, I must regretfully resign."

Democrats and the Biden campaign said Barr was fueling the very far-fetched claims he claimed he was guarding against. Bob Bauer, a senior Biden advisor, said that, quote, "those are the very kind of claims that the president and his lawyers are making unsuccessfully every day, as their lawsuits are laughed out of one court after another."

Monday marked the first time Barr has addressed claims of voter fraud since the election. In his letter to federal prosecutors and the FBI, he also stressed that they shouldn't pursue fanciful or far-fetched claims.

Trump has repeatedly claimed, without evidence, that there was widespread voter fraud. And in a Monday letter, his campaign alleged that Pennsylvania's mail-in voting system violated the Constitution. The campaign says it was, quote, "an illegal two-tiered voting system" where voting in person was subject to more oversight than voting by mail. Trump has not conceded the election to Biden two days after the Democrats secured the 270 electoral votes needed to win.