(the first AG – appointed in 1869)
:The office of the Attorney General was established by the Judiciary Act of 1789 as a part-time job for one person, but grew with the bureaucracy. At one time, the Attorney General gave legal advice to the U.S. Congress as well as the President, but in 1819 the Attorney General began advising Congress alone to ensure a manageable workload. Until March 3, 1853, the salary of the Attorney General was set by statute at less than the amount paid to other Cabinet members. Early Attorneys General supplemented their salaries by running private law practices, often arguing cases before the courts as attorneys for paying litigants.
Following unsuccessful efforts (in 1830 and 1846) to make Attorney General a full-time job, in 1869, the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary, led by Congressman William Lawrence, conducted an inquiry into the creation of a "law department" headed by the Attorney General and also composed of the various department solicitors and United States attorneys. On February 19, 1868, Lawrence introduced a bill in Congress to create the Department of Justice. President Ulysses S. Grant signed the bill into law on June 22, 1870." wiki on DoJ
I just heard a left wing commentator from California say on Foxnews that the MAIN THING to remember in the struggle to protect Jeff Sessions' tenure as AG is that the FRAMERS held sacred the sacramental purity of the Department of Justice and the Attorney General and so enthroned this department and its head as something like Tribunes of the People in the Roman Republic (that's the one before the empire). In the view of the suddenly constitutionally reverent Left, the Attorney General does not work for the president except in a largely meaningless ceremonial way and should be thought of as the Conscience of the Country.
This is all BS. There is no mention of either the Department of Justice nor the office of Attorney General in the Constitution.
The history of these two incrementally and fitfully established things is well depicted in the wiki cited.
The truth is that the Attorney General administers the collection of lawyers and federal police presently placed by ever changing law under his care.
Like any other cabinet secretary the attorney general is hired by the president and can be fired at will by the president. pl