Barr defends Justice Department intervention in Carroll defamation case against Trump

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Attorney General William Barr testifies before the House Judiciary Committee in the Congressional Auditorium at the U.S. Capitol Visitors Center, in Washington, U.S., July 28, 2020. Chip Somodevilla/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

(Reuters) - U.S. Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday defended his department’s decision to intervene and defend President Donald Trump against a defamation lawsuit brought by author E. Jean Carroll who has alleged that Trump raped her in the 1990s.

“This was a normal application of the law. The law is clear. It is done frequently,” Barr said during a press conference in Chicago, noting that elected officials who answer questions about their personal lives in the course of their federal employment can be defended by government attorneys.

Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch and Diane Bartz, Editing by Franklin Paul