Chuck Schumer, the senior Democrat in the Senate, said he would oppose Barr's confirmation in the final vote.
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Mr. Barr is one of the most well qualified individuals in the country to serve as Attorney General as he has held the job in the past.
Democrats on the committee said they were concerned that Barr's expansive views of presidential power, as outlined in his memo, would lead him to suppress parts of Mueller's report that address whether Trump tried to obstruct the investigation. But he has also noted that he takes seriously department regulations that say the report Mueller submits to the Justice Department should be treated as confidential.
Senators debated Barr's candidacy for several hours, focusing on his potential role in supervising special counsel Robert Mueller in the Russian Federation investigation.More news: New pressure over Khashoggi death, Trump ignores deadline
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In supporting Barr's nomination, Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham said, "I think we need a steady hand at the Department of Justice".
Barr previously was in several high-level DOJ positions, including as US attorney general in the George H.W. Bush administration.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell moved to limit debate and cut off any filibuster threats against the Barr nomination Thursday, setting up votes as soon as the Senate finishes work on a bipartisan package of public lands bills.
A year ago he sent an unsolicited legal opinion to the Justice Department and White House arguing that Mueller had no grounds to investigate Trump for obstruction of justice based on the firing of Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey in May 2017.
But Democrats said Thursday that Barr's comments did not go far enough to reassure them. "And I think we have to get to the bottom of it", Barr said.
The Republican president has repeatedly criticized the investigation as a "witch hunt" and denies any collusion with Moscow.