After special counsel Robert Mueller finished his report last week, Democrats warned that Trump’s cronies would scheme to conceal the full results of the investigation from the American people.
They were right.
On Tuesday afternoon, Trump’s attorney general, William Barr, said he will allow Trump to review Mueller’s final report before Congress or the public can see it. The news was shared by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), one of Trump’s staunchest supporters in Congress.
Graham said Barr intends to give the Trump White House the opportunity to preview the report and claim executive privilege on any parts they want to keep hidden. These are exactly the kinds of shady tactics Democratic leaders warned about when Mueller announced he completed his report.
“Now that Special Counsel Mueller has submitted his report to the Attorney General, it is imperative for Mr. Barr to make the full report public and provide its underlying documentation and findings to Congress,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a joint statement on Friday. They added that “the White House must not be allowed to interfere in decisions about what parts of those findings or evidence are made public.”
On Monday night, congressional leaders demanded the full, uncensored report from the Department of Justice by April 2. Some members were already frustrated by the four-page summary Barr sent to Congress. Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) called it an “elaborate public relations ploy” that was “purged and sanitized of any facts and details.”
Now Barr wants to let the White House further censor and sanitize what the public sees. Trump has repeatedly lied about Barr’s summary of the report, which has been made public, falsely claiming the Mueller report exonerates him. In fact, one of the few quotes from the report in Barr’s letter specifically says that Mueller did not exonerate Trump on the issue of obstruction of justice.
Now Barr is giving Trump the opportunity to hide whatever evidence Mueller gathered that suggested Trump might have obstructed justice and prevented Mueller from exonerating him on this issue.
Barr was opposed to the Mueller investigation from the beginning. Long before he was tapped for his current role, he sent a lengthy unsolicited memo to the Justice Department explaining why he believed the investigation was unjustified and that Trump should not be investigated for obstruction.
Now, as attorney general, Barr is essentially ensuring that the American people will never know the full results of that investigation.
Published with permission of The American Independent.