politics robert mueller Trump

No Collusion, No Obstruction.

The wait is finally over.

The wait is finally over – only not really, because as noted on Saturday, whatever Congress and the public learn about the Mueller report over the next 24 to 48 hours will likely be just the beginning of what’s expected to be a long battle over disclosure.

Ultimately, Democrats will insist that the full report be made public and that all of the underlying evidence be delivered to Congress, setting the stage for a protracted fight that could well end up in the Supreme Court.

Mueller of course concluded his investigation and submitted his final report to Attorney General William Barr on Friday. Barr quickly indicated that he would submit the required summary (the so-called “principal conclusions”) to Congress “as soon as this weekend”.

After 36 tantalizing hours, Jerry Nadler received a letter from Barr and it is embedded in full below.

No Collusion

Long story short, Mueller did not find evidence of collusion – or at least that’s the early read. Here is the passage from Barr’s summary:

The Special Counsel’s investigation did not find that the Trump campaign or anyone associated with it conspired or coordinated with Russia in its efforts to influence the 2016 US presidential election.

And here is the actual quote from Mueller:

The investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.

Notably, according to Barr’s summary of Mueller’s report, Trump’s team received “multiple” assistance offers “from Russian-affiliated individuals”, but apparently the campaign either didn’t accept them, or at least not to an extent and/or in a way that would constitute a conspiracy.

No Obstruction

On the obstruction investigation Mueller elected not to deliver a conclusion one way or another.

Instead, “for each of the relevant actions investigated, the report sets out the evidence on both sides of the question and leaves unresolved what the Special Counsel views as ‘difficult issues’ of law and fact concerning whether the President’s actions and intent could be viewed as obstruction.” This is the key passage (or so it would appear):

…while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.

It is thus left to Barr to determine whether the obstruction-related conduct described in the report constitutes a crime. He has, somewhat unsurprisingly, determined that it does not. To wit:

After reviewing the Special Counsel’s final report on these issues; consulting with Department officials, including the Office of Legal Counsel; and applying the principles of federal prosecution that guide our charging decisions, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and I have concluded that the evidence developed during the Special Counsel’s investigation is not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense.

That determination, Barr swears, “was made without regard” to whether a sitting president can in fact be indicted and prosecuted.

Congress will want the full report in order to make that determination for themselves, although now that Barr (and, apparently, Rosenstein) have cleared him, making the case will be much more difficult.

“Special Counsel Mueller worked for 22 months to determine the extent to which President Trump obstructed justice [while] Attorney General Barr took two days to tell the American people that while the President is not exonerated, there will be no action by DOJ”, Jerry Nadler remarked, adding that “there must be full transparency in what Special Counsel Mueller uncovered to not exonerate the President from wrongdoing.”

Nadler will in fact call Barr to testify.

The Justice Department also said Mueller did not recommend any further indictments and does not have any indictments under seal.

Mueller was not consulted on Barr’s letter.

Rudy Giuliani called it “better than I expected.” And here’s Trump’s “official” statement:

 

Again, this is far from over, but on an initial read this will doubtlessly bolster the President’s narrative and will surely be disappointing to his most ardent detractors.

Trump and his family still face myriad legal troubles, but the Mueller probe itself is no longer one of them.

The White House is calling this a “complete exoneration” of the president.

You can read the full Barr letter below.

AG March 24 2019 Letter to House and Senate Judiciary Committees

Read more

On Tenterhooks.

Bobby Three Sticks.

12 comments on “No Collusion, No Obstruction.

  1. The fix was in. Tiny will get a second term.

    • Of course!…..the fix is in, could have expected that from the liberals. Ha, ha Nancy. LOL

  2. I doubt there are more than 100 people in this entire country whose opinion of Trump would have been swayed by the results of this investigation, one way or another.

    If he and those in his circle would have been found to have committed crimes, the Trump humpers would have made all kinds of excuses and remained Trump humpers.

    Conversely, anyone who wasn’t a Trump humper before today isn’t going to magically become one tomorrow.

    • Actually Dana ,I don’t think we have seen the results of this investigation as Barr is a handpicked messenger in this instance.
      While not a Trump supporter, I personally think the country is better off if he were not able to run in 2020 and there are other ways to achieve this end than impeachment .

  3. Anonymous

    No Collusion; No Exoneration!

  4. Serious lack of conviction. I understand some of Trumps supporters in the upper echelons of government initially, cause he’s a malleable idiot prone to passing conservative bias, but another 4 years of Trump will be the tipping point of no return for the US as a whole on the global stage, akin to England and the sterling in the late ‘70s. Global influence will wain, EU will build strategic alliances excluding the US, and China will dominate all of south-east Asia and beyond. The belt and road initiative will usher in a new age of Chinese influence across emerging markets with high growth and global trade, while the US focuses actively and voluntarily withdraws their influence.

    It’s pretty remarkable that even those willing to abandon morals and support this madness in order to push a conservative agenda would be willing to let that happen. At a certain point, people have to wake the fuck up. The tipping point is coming.

    • Russia in the 1980s, UK in the 1970s, Germany in the 1940s… fuck go back to England in the 18th, Portugal in the 16th, ancient Romans in the early millennium, and Egypt before that.

      Somehow we’ve managed to convince ourselves the US is too intertwined in global affairs that they couldn’t share the same fate. I argue that Trump is actively making the fall of the US empire a distinct possibility.

      Global superpowers lose faith in Treasuries and USD. Republicans milk the population of everything they can and cut social programs. People get poorer and more desperate. The US starts to get yellow vest movements of their own. Trickle down economics don’t work.

      Central banks wonder where is the inflation? It’s clearly cause the population is stuck in a time warp while rich get richer. How the fuck is making billionaires more billions going to increase inflation and affect the price of groceries for the average person? Wtf is going on in the world?

  5. ezkappdo

    Barr should have recused himself, but ultimately it is up to Congress to finish this off and conclude the investigation and decide what can be told to the American people and what can be charged and if it deserves the consideration of impeachment. If nothing was going on why were they constantly lying the whole way? ….but let us see the real report first!!!

  6. Anonymous

    Interesting that the Trump haters now attack Barr even though Rosenstein was more involved in the Barr submission than Barr himself. Additionally, Mueller could and would speak up if the Barr report characterized Mueller’s investigation incorrectly.

    • How did you come by this insider’s knowledge of what Mueller would and wouldn’t do? He hasn’t said a word in 22 months

      • and see, this (probably well-meaning, by the way) comment underscores how little Americans understand about how autocracies gradually desensitize the public to what, if it happened all at once, would be seen for what it is.

        in the scenario you post (i.e., let’s say Mueller holds a press conference and says that in his opinion, Trump is guilty of obstruction. what keeps Trump from throwing him in prison? and before you say “well, the law” or “well, the Justice Department would never do that”, I would say: “are you sure?”

        if your answer (if only in your head) is: “no, I’m not actually 100% sure”, well then you have just answered your other question.

  7. “After reviewing the Special Counsel’s final report on these issues; consulting with Department officials, including the Office of Legal Counsel; and applying the principles of federal prosecution that guide our charging decisions, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and I have concluded that the evidence developed during the Special Counsel’s investigation is not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense.”

    That same evidence applied to any other person in this country would result in not one, but many counts of obstruction in an indictment. Moreover, there is no secret about what the evidence is to support the crimes he committed amounting to obstruction as well as witness tampering since so much of the evidence was Trump’s own conduct via television, twitter and firings. In a sense, there was no “cover up,”by Trump, as the criminality was performed before our very eyes. The cover up, if any, was the decision by Barr and Rosenstein (the man who drafted the letter the with the fraudulent reasons for Comey’s firing) that is the cover up.

Speak On It

Skip to toolbar