Over the weekend, after months of waiting, Americans finally a first look at special counsel Robert Mueller’s long-anticipated report on his investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
On Sunday, Attorney General William Barr submitted a summary of the key conclusions he had drawn from Mueller’s report to Congress, with the attorney general reporting that the special counsel had not concluded that there was collusion between the 2016 Trump election campaign and Russia, or obstruction of justice on President Donald Trump’s part.
“The investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities,” Barr wrote in his summary.
While his notes do provide an answer to one of the biggest questions surround Mueller’s ongoing investigation–whether the special counsel had found evidence of collusion during the 2016 election–the public is still waiting to have access to the full report.
It is unclear just how long Americans will have to wait until they can read the full document themselves, however, with the next steps down to Barr now that the 22-month long investigation has been brought to a close.
It will be up to the attorney general to decide how much of the report is released to Congress, as well as to the public.
Barr has said he remains “committed to as much transparency as possible,” but previously suggested that he would be willing to keep certain aspects of the report confidential.
Already, Democrats have demanded a full release of Mueller’s report, as well as the supporting evidence his team collected during the investigation.
Both House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer asserted it was “imperative” that the full report be made public.
“The American people have a right to the truth,” Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement.
They also warned that the White House “must not be allowed to interfere in decisions about what parts of those findings or evidence are made public.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders has already asserted that the Trump administration has no plans to interfere with the release of the investigation’s findings, saying in a statement: “We look forward to the process taking its course,” according to The Associated Press.
However, Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, appeared to counter that, asserting that the president’s legal team would make efforts to ensure that the administration gets an “early look” before Mueller’s findings go public.
Giuliani asserted that it was “appropriate” for the White House to have the opportunity “to review matters of executive privilege.”
For his part, Trump welcomed the report after learning of Barr’s summary, with the president taking to Twitter to celebrate the findings as a “Complete and total EXONERATION,” despite the fact that Mueller’s report did not exonerate the president.
Still, Trump lauded the report’s findings of “No Collusion, No Obstruction,” later adding in his tweet: “KEEP AMERICA GREAT!”
Source: Newsweek Chantal Da Silva
Photo Credit: The Boston Globe
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