DOJ Delivers Mueller Report to Congress

US
Attorney General William Barr departs after speaking at a news conference to discuss Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report, in Washington, D.C., April 18, 2019. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)

Updated 11:55 a.m.

The Justice Department on Thursday morning delivered a redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s final report to Congress.

Attorney General William Barr presented the House and Senate Judiciary Committees with copies of the redacted report, which was also published on the Justice Department website.

Barr held a press conference earlier in the morning in which he said President Trump and Trump’s lawyers offered no input on any of the redactions.

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“No material has been redacted based on executive privilege,” Barr said. “The president’s personal lawyers were not permitted to make, and did not request, any redactions.”

Mueller’s team was not able to reach a conclusion that “no criminal conduct occurred,” according to the report.

“The evidence we obtained about the President’s actions and intent presents difficult issues that prevent us from conclusively determining that no criminal conduct occurred,” the report says. “Accordingly, while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”

The report added that Congress still has the authority to find Trump obstructed justice, i.e. to “prohibit a President’s corrupt use of his authority in order to protect the integrity of the administration of justice.”

The special counsel’s team also said it concluded that it could have subpoenaed Trump to testify, but decided against it in the interest of avoiding the “substantial delay that such an investigative step would likely produce at a late stage in our investigation.”

“We had sufficient evidence to understand relevant events and to make certain assessments without the President’s testimony,” the report says.

Prosecutors added that while the investigation confirmed that Trump campaign associates believed they would benefit from “information stolen and released through Russian efforts” and “showed interest” in WikiLeaks’ publishing of damaging emails stolen from the Clinton campaign, no criminal actions on the part of the president’s campaign were uncovered.

“Publication of these types of materials would not be criminal unless the publisher also participated in the underlying hacking conspiracy,” Barr said during his press conference.

President Trump, reacting to the report’s release, said there “never was” and “never will be” any collusion.

“I’m having a good day,” Trump said to applause from the audience during a White House address to the Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride. “This should never happen to another president again, this hoax.”

Many Democrats, including House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff, have requested Mueller testify on Capitol Hill about the report.

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