After the abominably partisan summary of the Mueller report released on Sunday by Trump’s hand-picked Attorney General William Barr, it’s no surprise that many in Congress are ready to see what’s in the actual report from Robert Mueller’s special counsel investigation.
Barr’s synopsis of the parts of the report that he liked and omission of those he didn’t threw up red flags for legal experts, political analysts, and lawmakers alike, with phrases like “absence of evidence” — a linguistic tool that Republicans often use to conflate with absence of proof as though they are the same thing. Barr was quick to conclude, based on his own 19-page memo from last June, that it didn’t matter that Mueller had not concluded that the President didn’t obstruct justice — Barr merely defined everything Trump has done over the last two years as basically just not being obstruction.
That won’t fly, in either the current political climate or in the minds of the House Democrats heading up the committees that will be seeking to parse the report out further, once it is either fully released or released in whatever form the Attorney General determines is within the confines of the law.
And while that may be cold comfort to those who are demanding a full, unredacted release of the report, the fact is that Congress still has a trick up its sleeve, and appears ready to use it: A subpoena for Robert Mueller himself.
Certainly, they could also subpoena Barr — but with his history in the Iran-Contra scandal and his obvious loyalty to Party over Justice, the smarter move would be to bring in Mueller, whose dedication to the rule of law has been legendary during his entire storied career.
A formal request would come before any subpoena, however, and Mueller’s already-public willingness to respond to even a simple request could be an indicator of his eagerness to get his own conclusions and interpretations read into the public record as soon as possible.
It is already been discussed that such a request could come as early as before the end of this week. However, we suspect that Congress — and Mueller — will want to wait to find out just how much of the report Republicans and the Republican Attorney General are willing to put on display.
Featured image is a screen capture.