First a look at Mueller’s press conference today (Wednesday, May 29, 2019), FULL Transcript of speech, highlighted, at end will be pertinent comments.
Full transcript: Robert Mueller’s statement on the Russia investigation
Good morning, everyone, and thank you for being here. Two years ago, the acting attorney general asked me to serve as special counsel and he created the special counsel’s office. The appointment order directed the office to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. This included investigating any links or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the Trump campaign.
Now, I have not spoken publicly during our investigation. I am speaking out today because our investigation is complete. The attorney general has made the report on our investigation largely public. And we are formally closing the special counsel’s office and as well, I’m resigning from the Department of Justice to return to private life.
I’ll make a few remarks about the results of our work. But beyond these few remarks, it is important that the office’s written work speak for itself.
Let me begin where the appointment order begins, and that is interference in the 2016 presidential election. As alleged by the grand jury in an indictment, Russian intelligence officers who are part of the Russian military launched a concerted attack on our political system.
The indictment alleges that they used sophisticated cyber-techniques to hack into computers and networks used by the Clinton campaign. They stole private information and then released that information through fake online identities and through the organization WikiLeaks. The releases were designed and timed to interfere with our election and to damage a presidential candidate. And at the same time as the grand jury alleged in a separate indictment, a private Russian entity engaged in a social media operation where Russian citizens posed as Americans in order to influence an election.
These indictments contain allegations and we are not commenting on the guilt or the innocence of any specific defendant. Every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
The indictments allege and the other activities in our report describe efforts to interfere in our political system. They needed to be investigated and understood. And that is among the reasons why the Department of Justice established our office.
That is also a reason we investigated efforts to obstruct the investigation. The matters we investigated were of paramount importance. It was critical for us to obtain full and accurate information from every person we questioned. When a subject of an investigation obstructs that investigation or lies to investigators, it strikes at the core of their government’s effort to find the truth and hold wrongdoers accountable.
Let me say a word about the report. The report has two parts, addressing the two main issues we were asked to investigate.
The first volume of the report details numerous efforts emanating from Russia to influence the election. This volume includes a discussion of the Trump campaign’s response to this activity as well as our conclusion that there was insufficient evidence to charge a broader conspiracy.
And in the second volume, the report describes the results and analysis of our obstruction of justice investigation involving the president. The order appointing me special counsel authorized us to investigate actions that could obstruct the investigation. We conducted that investigation and we kept the office of the acting attorney general apprised of the progress of our work.
And as set forth in the report, after that investigation, if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so. We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime.
The introduction to the Volume 2 of our report explains that decision. It explains that under long-standing department policy, a president cannot be charged with a federal crime while he is in office. That is unconstitutional. Even if the charge is kept under seal and hidden from public view, that, too, is prohibited.
A special counsel’s office is part of the Department of Justice, and by regulation, it was bound by that department policy. Charging the president with a crime was therefore not an option we could consider. The department’s written opinion explaining the policy makes several important points that further informed our handling of the obstruction investigation. Those points are summarized in our report and I will describe two of them for you.
First, the opinion explicitly permits the investigation of a sitting president because it is important to preserve evidence while memories are fresh and documents available. Among other things, that evidence could be used if there were co-conspirators who could be charged now.
And second, the opinion says that the Constitution requires a process other than the criminal justice system to formally accuse a sitting president of wrongdoing.
And beyond department policy, we were guided by principles of fairness. It would be unfair to potentially — it would be unfair to potentially accuse somebody of a crime when there can be no court resolution of the actual charge.
So that was Justice Department policy. Those were the principles under which we operated. And from them, we concluded that we would not reach a determination one way or the other about whether the president committed a crime. That is the office’s final position and we will not comment on any other conclusions or hypotheticals about the president.
We conducted an independent criminal investigation and reported the results to the attorney general, as required by department regulations. The attorney general then concluded that it was appropriate to provide our report to Congress and to the American people. At one point in time, I requested that certain portions of the report be released and the attorney general preferred to make — preferred to make the entire report public all at once and we appreciate that the attorney general made the report largely public. And I certainly do not question the attorney general’s good faith in that decision.
Now, I hope and expect this to be the only time that I will speak to you in this manner. I am making that decision myself. No one has told me whether I can or should testify or speak further about this matter.
There has been discussion about an appearance before Congress. Any testimony from this office would not go beyond our report. It contains our findings and analysis and the reasons for the decisions we made. We chose those words carefully and the work speaks for itself. And the report is my testimony. I would not provide information beyond that which is already public in any appearance before Congress.
In addition, access to our underlying work product is being decided in a process that does not involve our office.
So, beyond what I’ve said here today and what is contained in our written work, I do not believe it is appropriate for me to speak further about the investigation or to comment on the actions of the Justice Department or Congress. And it’s for that reason I will not be taking questions today, as well.
Now, before I step away, I want to thank the attorneys, the FBI agents, the analysts, the professional staff who helped us conduct this investigation in a fair and independent manner.
These individuals who spent nearly two years with the special counsel’s office were of the highest integrity. And I will close by reiterating the central allegation of our indictments, that there were multiple systemic efforts to interfere in our election.
And that allegation deserves the attention of every American. Thank you. Thank you for being here today.
THE MAIN TAKE-AWAYS FROM THIS:
- NOTICE HOW MANY TIMES AND WITH WHAT EMPHASIS MUELLER REFERRED TO HIS WRITTEN REPORT.
- NOTICE THAT MUELLER IS “BY THE BOOK”. BY DOJ POLICY HE WAS PROHIBITED FROM CHARGING TRUMP WITH CRIMES. PERSONALLY HE SAW EVIDENCE OF CRIMES. HE SAW IT FOOLISH TO CHARGE THE PRESIDENT IF THERE COULD/WOULD BE NO COURT RESOLUTION
- LASTLY, THE “MONEY LINE” IS THIS: if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so.
P.S., ALSO WORTH NOTING: MUELLER IS RETIRING AND GOING BACK TO THE PRIVATE SECTOR WHICH MEANS THE DOJ/TRUMP CABAL CAN NO LONGER TELL HIM NOT TO TESTIFY BEFORE CONGRESS.
NEXT, JUSTIN AMASH OFFERS A 4-PRONGED RATIONALE FOR IMPEACHING TRUMP:
1. They say there were no underlying crimes.
In fact, there were many crimes revealed by the investigation, some of which were charged, and some of which were not but are nonetheless described in Mueller’s report.
2. They say obstruction of justice requires an underlying crime.
In fact, obstruction of justice does not require the prosecution of an underlying crime, and there is a logical reason for that. Prosecutors might not charge a crime precisely *because* obstruction of justice denied them timely access to evidence that could lead to a prosecution.
If an underlying crime were required, then prosecutors could charge obstruction of justice only if it were unsuccessful in completely obstructing the investigation. This would make no sense.
3. They imply the president should be permitted to use any means to end what he claims to be a frivolous investigation, no matter how unreasonable his claim.
In fact, the president could not have known whether every single person Mueller investigated did or did not commit any crimes.
4. They imply “high Crimes and Misdemeanors” requires charges of a statutory crime or misdemeanor.
In fact, “high Crimes and Misdemeanors” is not defined in the Constitution and does not require corresponding statutory charges. The context implies conduct that violates the public trust—and that view is echoed by the Framers of the Constitution and early American scholars.
Justin said THAT after he said THIS:
Here are my principal conclusions:
1. Attorney General Barr has deliberately misrepresented Mueller’s report.
2. President Trump has engaged in impeachable conduct.
3. Partisanship has eroded our system of checks and balances.
4. Few members of Congress have read the report.
I offer these conclusions only after having read Mueller’s redacted report carefully and completely, having read or watched pertinent statements and testimony, and having discussed this matter with my staff, who thoroughly reviewed materials and provided me with further analysis.
In comparing Barr’s principal conclusions, congressional testimony, and other statements to Mueller’s report, it is clear that Barr intended to mislead the public about Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s analysis and findings.
Barr’s misrepresentations are significant but often subtle, frequently taking the form of sleight-of-hand qualifications or logical fallacies, which he hopes people will not notice.
Under our Constitution, the president “shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” While “high Crimes and Misdemeanors” is not defined, the context implies conduct that violates the public trust.
Contrary to Barr’s portrayal, Mueller’s report reveals that President Trump engaged in specific actions and a pattern of behavior that meet the threshold for impeachment.
In fact, Mueller’s report identifies multiple examples of conduct satisfying all the elements of obstruction of justice, and undoubtedly any person who is not the president of the United States would be indicted based on such evidence.
Impeachment, which is a special form of indictment, does not even require probable cause that a crime (e.g., obstruction of justice) has been committed; it simply requires a finding that an official has engaged in careless, abusive, corrupt, or otherwise dishonorable conduct.
While impeachment should be undertaken only in extraordinary circumstances, the risk we face in an environment of extreme partisanship is not that Congress will employ it as a remedy too often but rather that Congress will employ it so rarely that it cannot deter misconduct.
Our system of checks and balances relies on each branch’s jealously guarding its powers and upholding its duties under our Constitution. When loyalty to a political party or to an individual trumps loyalty to the Constitution, the Rule of Law—the foundation of liberty—crumbles.
We’ve witnessed members of Congress from both parties shift their views 180 degrees—on the importance of character, on the principles of obstruction of justice—depending on whether they’re discussing Bill Clinton or Donald Trump.
Few members of Congress even read Mueller’s report; their minds were made up based on partisan affiliation—and it showed, with representatives and senators from both parties issuing definitive statements on the 448-page report’s conclusions within just hours of its release.
America’s institutions depend on officials to uphold both the rules and spirit of our constitutional system even when to do so is personally inconvenient or yields a politically unfavorable outcome. Our Constitution is brilliant and awesome; it deserves a government to match it.
AFTER ALL THAT JUSTIN THEN SAID THIS AS WELL:
Mueller’s report describes a consistent effort by the president to use his office to obstruct or otherwise corruptly impede the Russian election interference investigation because it put his interests at risk.
The president has an obligation not to violate the public trust, including using official powers for corrupt purposes. For instance, presidents have the authority to nominate judges, but a president couldn’t select someone to nominate because they’d promised the president money.
This principle extends to all the president’s powers, including the authority over federal investigations, federal officials, and pardons.
President Trump had an incentive to undermine the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, which included investigating contacts between Russia and the Trump campaign.
The investigation threatened to uncover information, including criminal activity, that could put Trump’s interests at risk. Ultimately, the investigation did uncover very unflattering information about the president, his family, his associates, his campaign, and his business.
It also revealed criminal activities, some of which were committed by people in Trump’s orbit and, in the case of Michael Cohen’s campaign finance violation, on Trump’s behalf.
The investigation began before the president was elected and inaugurated. After Trump assumed the powers of the presidency, Mueller’s report shows that he used those powers to try to obstruct and impede the investigation.
Some excuse Trump’s conduct based on allegations of issues with the investigation, but no one disputes the appropriateness of investigating election interference, which included investigating contacts between the Trump campaign and people connected to the Russian government.
Some examples in Mueller’s report of the president’s obstructing and impeding the investigation include:
1. Trump asked the FBI director to stop investigating Michael Flynn, who had been his campaign adviser and national security adviser, and who had already committed a crime by lying to the FBI.
2. After AG Sessions recused himself from the Russian investigation on the advice of DoJ ethics lawyers, Trump directly asked Sessions to reverse his recusal so that he could retain control over the investigation and help the president.
3. Trump directed the White House counsel, Don McGahn, to have Special Counsel Mueller removed on the basis of pretextual conflicts of interest that Trump’s advisers had already told him were “ridiculous” and could not justify removing the special counsel.
4. When that event was publicly reported, Trump asked that McGahn make a public statement and create a false internal record stating that Trump had not asked him to fire the special counsel, and suggested that McGahn would be fired if he did not comply.
5. Trump asked Corey Lewandowski, his former campaign manager, to tell AG Sessions to limit the special counsel’s investigation only to future election interference. Trump said Lewandowski should tell Sessions he was fired if he would not meet with him.
6. Trump used his pardon power to influence his associates, including Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen, not to fully cooperate with the investigation.
Trump, through his own statements—such as complaining about people who “flip” and talk to investigators—and through communications between his personal counsel and Manafort/Cohen, gave the impression that they would be pardoned if they did not fully cooperate with investigators.
Manafort ultimately breached an agreement to cooperate with investigators, and Cohen offered false testimony to Congress, including denying that the Trump Tower Moscow project had extended to June 2016 and that he and Trump had discussed traveling to Russia during the campaign.
Both men have been convicted for offering false information, and Manafort’s lack of cooperation left open some significant questions, such as why exactly he provided an associate in Ukraine with campaign polling data, which he expected to be shared with a Russian oligarch.
Some of the president’s actions were inherently corrupt. Other actions were corrupt—and therefore impeachable—because the president took them to serve his own interests.
The president has authority to fire federal officials, direct his subordinates, and grant pardons, but he cannot do so for corrupt purposes; otherwise, he would always be allowed to shut down any investigation into himself or his associates, which would put him above the law.
LASTLY, FROM JUSTIN AMASH, REPUBLICAN CONGRESMAN, THIS:
Attorney General Barr has deliberately misrepresented key aspects of Mueller’s report and decisions in the investigation, which has helped further the president’s false narrative about the investigation.
After receiving Mueller’s report, Barr wrote and released a letter on March 24 describing Barr’s own decision not to indict the president for obstruction of justice. That letter selectively quotes and summarizes points in Mueller’s report in misleading ways.
Mueller’s report says he chose not to decide whether Trump broke the law because there’s an official DoJ opinion that indicting a sitting president is unconstitutional, and because of concerns about impacting the president’s ability to govern and pre-empting possible impeachment.
Barr’s letter doesn’t mention those issues when explaining why Mueller chose not to make a prosecutorial decision. He instead selectively quotes Mueller in a way that makes it sound—falsely—as if Mueller’s decision stemmed from legal/factual issues specific to Trump’s actions.
But, in fact, Mueller finds considerable evidence that several of Trump’s actions detailed in the report meet the elements of obstruction, and Mueller’s constitutional and prudential issues with indicting a sitting president would preclude indictment regardless of what he found.
In noting why Barr thought the president’s intent in impeding the investigation was insufficient to establish obstruction, Barr selectively quotes Mueller to make it sound as if his analysis was much closer to Barr’s analysis than it actually was:
Barr quotes Mueller saying the evidence didn’t establish that Trump was personally involved in crimes related to Russian election interference, and Barr then claims that Mueller found that fact relevant to whether the president had the intent to obstruct justice.
But Mueller’s quote is taken from a section in which he describes other improper motives Trump could have had and notes: “The injury to the integrity of the justice system is the same regardless of whether a person committed an underlying wrong.” None of that is in Barr’s letter.
As a result of Barr’s March 24 letter, the public and Congress were misled. Mueller himself notes this in a March 27 letter to Barr, saying that Barr’s letter “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance of this Office’s work and conclusions.”
Mueller: “There is now public confusion about critical aspects of the results of our investigation. This threatens to undermine a central purpose for which the Department appointed the Special Counsel: to assure full public confidence in the outcome of the investigations.”
To “alleviate the misunderstandings that have arisen,” Mueller urged the release of the report’s introductions and executive summaries, which he had told Barr “accurately summarize [Mueller’s] Office’s work and conclusions.”
Barr declined; he allowed the confusion to fester and only released the materials three weeks later with the full redacted report. In the interim, Barr testified before a House committee and was misleading about his knowledge of Mueller’s concerns:
Barr was asked about reports “that members of [Mueller’s] team are frustrated…with the limited information included in your March 24th letter, that it does not adequately or accurately necessarily portray the report’s findings. Do you know what they’re referencing with that?”
Barr absurdly replied: “No, I don’t…I suspect that they probably wanted more put out.” Yet Mueller had directly raised those concerns to Barr, and Barr says he “suspect[s]” they “probably” wanted more materials put out, as if Mueller hadn’t directly told him that.
In subsequent statements and testimony, Barr used further misrepresentations to help build the president’s false narrative that the investigation was unjustified.
Barr notes that Mueller did not “find any conspiracy to violate U.S. law involving Russia-linked persons and any persons associated with the Trump campaign.” He then declares that Mueller found “no collusion” and implies falsely that the investigation was baseless.
But whether there’s enough evidence for a conviction of a specific crime which Mueller thought was appropriate to charge is a different and much higher standard than whether the people whom Mueller investigated had done anything worthy of investigation.
In truth, Mueller’s report describes concerning contacts between members of Trump’s campaign and people in or connected to the Russian government.
For instance, Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, and Jared Kushner took a meeting with a Russian lawyer whom Trump Jr. had been told worked for the Russian government and would provide documents to “incriminate Hillary,” as part of the Russian government’s “support for Mr. Trump.”
It’s wrong to suggest that the fact that Mueller did not choose to indict anyone for this means there wasn’t a basis to investigate whether it amounted to a crime or “collusion,” or whether it was in fact part of Russia’s efforts to help Trump’s candidacy.
Barr says the White House “fully cooperated” with the investigation and that Mueller “never sought” or “pushed” to get more from the president, but the report says Mueller unsuccessfully sought an interview with the president for over a year.
The report says the president’s counsel was told that interviewing him was “vital” to Mueller’s investigation and that it would be in the interest of the public and the presidency. Still Trump refused.
The president instead gave written answers to questions submitted by the special counsel. Those answers are often incomplete or unresponsive. Mueller found them “inadequate” and again sought to interview the president.
Ultimately, the special counsel “recogniz[ed] that the President would not be interviewed voluntarily” and chose not to subpoena him because of concerns that the resulting “potentially lengthy constitutional litigation” would delay completion of the investigation.
Barr has so far successfully used his position to sell the president’s false narrative to the American people. This will continue if those who have read the report do not start pushing back on his misrepresentations and share the truth.
Thank The Lord Jesus Christ for Justin Amash who act on courage, honesty, and integrity.
Here Are the Other Investigations President Trump Still Faces
Roger Stone criminal trial
The hush money investigation
Trump’s inauguration funding
Pro-Trump super PAC
Trump Organization insurance policies
Trump Organization real estate deals
The Trump Foundation
Trump’s golf club employing undocumented immigrants
The emoluments lawsuit
Michael Cohen’s legal fees
Summer Zervos defamation suit
House Intelligence Committee
House Judiciary Committee
House Oversight Committee
House Financial Services
House Ways and Means Committee
House Foreign Affairs Committee
The Senate Intelligence Committee started investigating Russia’s election interference in 2017. Unlike its House counterpart, it issued a report in the summer of 2018 concluding that Russia did interfere in the 2016 election to try to help Trump.
THERE ARE MANY LINKS AND MUCH DETAIL TO THE ABOVE REPORT HERE .
All told there are a total of 19 different investigations into TrumPutin & Co. .
Does THAT sound like an innocent, honest man to you??
-Rev. Larry Wallenmeyer.