Barr: Redacted Mueller report could be released by mid-April

Henrietta Brewer
April 3, 2019

After a period of uncharacteristic silence on the issue as Mr Mueller neared the end of his investigation, Mr Trump let loose this week in attacks on those who he saw as supporters of the investigation, as well as his Democratic opponents. Or dangle pardons before potential witnesses against him. "Congress requires the full and complete Mueller report, without redactions, as well as access to the underlying evidence, by April 2", Nadler said in a statement released shortly after the letter, establishing the push for access to redacted materials as the new front in the war.

Mr Trump went on to repeat his claim that the report was a "total exoneration, complete vindication" - an expression which has jarred with some given that Mr Mueller's report explicitly stated that investigators were unable to exonerate the president of obstruction of justice. He says Mueller's failure to find a criminal conspiracy with Russian Federation does not absolve the Trump campaign of its actions. According to Barr, Mueller found no evidence of collusion between Russian Federation the Trump campaign.

As Baker argued, this undermines a powerful norm in American politics and the executive branch.

When asked by reporters at the White House earlier this month if he could consider pardoning Manafort, Trump demurred, saying, "I have not even given it a thought as of this moment". The operation of the rule of law is supposed to belong outside politics and the president's personal and partisan interests, so the distance was deemed appropriate and necessary. Obstruction of justice is a perversion of that primary duty. Instead, Mueller left it up to Barr to determine if any crime of obstruction had occurred.

Our office has proudly hosted more town halls than nearly any other Member of Congress, and for two years now, I have heard countless voters vehemently opposed to the Mueller investigation.

It's a frightening proposition. We also know what it's going to be called, and it's not a surprise. Russian Federation has denied any meddling. Why isn't he using his power to do so?

Advocates of this almost unfettered view of executive power argue that there's an appropriate remedy to unacceptable behavior by a president: impeachment.

A sudden health care decision made after heated Oval Office disagreements - along with a reversal on education funding, a confusing sanctions mystery and still-unfilled Cabinet posts - revealed the chaotic practices and decision-making that have colored Trump's term until this point are still ever-present. There was a change in regulations after independent counsel Ken Starr's investigation into President Bill Clinton: When Starr submitted his final report in 1998, he had to send it to Congress as well as to the attorney general. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., that he's combing through Mr. Mueller's report and removing classified, grand jury, and other information in hopes of releasing the rest to Congress.

Barr released a four-page summary of the report on Sunday and is expected to produce a public version of the document in the coming weeks.

So here's where we are. Each move was widely interpreted as a signal to other potential cooperating witnesses in the Mueller probe that they could also be rewarded with a pardon if they stayed loyal to the president. What if it happens under a Democratic president? What Trump was allowed to get away with will stand as a precedent - more brash presidents may see it as a roadmap. They also touch on what they think may or may not be in the report.

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