There are no public signs to suggest Mr. Trump is less than satisfied with Mr. Barr, but White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany was noncommittal when asked multiple times Wednesday if the president still had confidence in Mr. Esper.
Mr. McConnell said he appreciates the “dedicated work” of Mr. Esper and Mr. Barr at a difficult time for the country “and their steadfast commitment to their constitutional duties to preserve peace and order, uphold liberty, and protect the American people so they can freely exercise their rights.”
“In these challenging times, the President and the American people are very well-served by the expert advice and principled leadership of people like Secretary Esper and Attorney General Barr,” Mr. McConnell said on Twitter.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday offered public support for Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper a day after the White House declined to specifically say President Trump has confidence in his defense secretary.
Mr. Esper had said earlier in the day on Wednesday that he doesn’t support invoking the Insurrection Act of 1807 to leverage active-duty U.S. forces to respond to the ongoing unrest after the president had threatened to use it.