The Mueller Report has concluded and the results were certainly not what many of us expected, at least in regards to Trump and his role in the Russian meddling.
Mueller says that there was no collusion. After 2 years of investigation I would assume that to be definitive. At least when it comes to whether the Trump campaign played an active role in Russian interference.
But Mueller proved beyond a doubt that Russia did interfere and they did it to get Trump elected. The Trump tower meeting would clearly indicate that the Trump campaign was aware that they were getting Russian help. I guess what Mueller is saying that Trump’s campaign tried to just get out of the way and let them do their work. Numerous campaign contacts by Russians to various campaign officials did occur. And although Mueller seems to be saying that they did not agree to work with the Russians, they also did not report those contacts to the Justice Department and then lied about those contacts when asked.
So we have a campaign that, essentially, was an unwitting stooge for Russian interference.
The FBI knew about this interference while it was happening and the Trump campaign did not know about the FBI’s awareness until late in the campaign. But why didn’t they reveal or explain the contacts? Why weren’t they forthcoming then or at least forthcoming after the election? Why did they feel the need to lie about it? And why would Mitch McConnell tell the FBI to back off on publicly stating what was clearly happening?
We are left with the theory that the Trump campaign was the gang who could not shoot straight. Trump made clumsy attempts to help the Russians. For instance, his statement that “Russia, if you are listening, give us Hillary’s e-mails.” Well, more than likely, they had already hacked into the DNC and Podesta’s server, and were working on weaponizing those for the campaign. Trump apparently didn’t need to give them any encouragement. And the Trump tower meeting must have been more confusion than cooperation. Because Mueller thoroughly examined that aspect as well. Then there is Trump’s attempt to spin what happened by giving Junior his “prepared” statement. Just another clumsy method of Trump, thinking he needed to protect himself.
All of these things Mueller knew about but decided they never reached a level of conspiracy. Stupid maybe, but conspiracy no.
But still Trump and his cohorts felt the need to hide these things. They may not have conspired in the legal sense, but with Trump as the knowing beneficiary of the Russian interference, they were content to let it all happen without helping or hurting. Which, to me, is still hurting America.
Then there is the obstruction of justice matter. Here, to me, Trump is clearly guilty – but Mueller punts on this. I think the Department of Justice guidelines, about not being able to indict a sitting President, clearly come into play. I prefer to think that since he could not indict, he felt it should be more of a decision by a Congressional impeachment inquiry. Only Congress can put a President on trial. And that is why he defines his findings into pros and cons…leaving Congress to debate how to proceed.
Attorney General Barr took it upon himself to dismiss the obstruction charge…however, I still do not think that Special Counsel rules allow that. All of this makes it imperative that the entire report is made public.
All we have is a 4 page summary from the Attorney General. But we know all of this happened:
2,800 subpoenas -19 lawyers -40 FBI agents -500 search warrants -230 orders from communication records -50 orders authorizing use of penn registers -13 requests to foreign govs. for evidence -interviewed about 500 witnesses.
So there can be little question that this report is voluminous. There is a lot to examine and Congress must be given an opportunity to look at these details. We have a right to know what we paid for here. We have a right to make our own determination based on the evidence. We have a right to learn all of this before we decide in November 2020.
Our President’s judgment is clearly in question here. His actions, his responses, his tendencies are all on display here. And given what we know about his policies, the question of re-electing this person is certainly in doubt.
With this report, impeachment is less of a possibility. But we still need to understand what Mueller found out and what he knows.
Then we can make our judgment at the ballot box.