Trump intensifies effort to discredit Mueller report
- Author: Jon Douglas Mar 23, 2019,
Mar 23, 2019, 1:15
Earlier, Trump, confident that the entire affair was a mere "witch-hunt", indicated he would not mind if the report were made public.
In a letter to lawmakers, Mr Barr said Mr Mueller had concluded the probe, that he is reviewing the report and will be consulting the deputy attorney general and Mr Mueller to determine what information from it can be released to Congress.
It's not clear how much of the report will become public. His team brought charges against 34 people, including six Trump associates, and three companies. The report will now be reviewed by Barr, who has said he will write his own account communicating Mueller's findings to Congress and the American public. There was no obstruction [of justice].
The former Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation insists he has "no idea" if the Mueller report into Russian meddling in Mr Trump's winning presidential campaign will find anything, but hopes it will deliver the "fair administration of justice".
He mercilessly harangued former attorney general Jeff Sessions for recusing from the Russian Federation investigation two months before Mueller was named special counsel, a move that left the president without a perceived loyalist atop the probe.
"Even though I believe Mr. Trump is morally unfit to be president of the United States, I'm not rooting for Mr. Mueller to demonstrate that he is a criminal".
Since his dismissal, Comey has emerged as an outspoken critic of Trump - including publishing a book past year that detailed his soured relationship with the president.
It remains unclear which cases and segments of the investigation Mueller may have referred out to other offices.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said Mr Trump has not been issued a copy of the report. Is it because Mueller has concluded that the USA president can't be indicted while in office?
If the DOJ decides not to make the Mueller report public, Cole added, "Congress should use its subpoena powers to make sure the truth sees the light of day".
Trump fired Barr's predecessor, Jeff Sessions, in November after complaining for months about Sessions' 2017 decision to recuse himself from overseeing the Russian Federation investigation.
In prosecuting Manafort, Mueller showed how the former campaign chairman made millions of dollars working for pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine, while also exposing his ties to a consultant who the special counsel said was connected to Russian intelligence.
Trump and his allies have spent almost two years trying to discredit Mueller.
Several House committees in the meantime are conducting aggressive investigations of Trump and people around him. Trump faces a separate Justice Department investigation in NY into hush money payments during the campaign to two women who say they had sex with him years before the election.
The conclusion of Mueller's investigation does not remove legal peril for the president.