Head of the former Special Council Robert Mueller’s highly anticipated public hearing is finally here. He is testifying before the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees on his final report regarding the Russian collusion and obstruction investigations. Democrats have been trying for quite some time to make this hearing happen, despite insistence from Mueller that he did not want to be brought before Congress – and that his final report was his final word on the topic.
In his opening statement to the bi-partisan committees, (which according to reports had not been seen by the Department of Justice,) Mueller said that he took the role as the head of the Special Council because he believed it was an issue of national importance.
“In addition to the criminal charges we brought, as required by Justice Department regulations, we submitted a confidential report to the Attorney General at the conclusion of our investigation. The report set forth the results of our work, and the reasons for our charging and declination decisions. The Attorney General later made the report largely public. As you know, I made a few limited remarks about our report when we closed the Special Council’s office in May of this year. There are certain points that bear emphasis. First, our investigation found that the Russian government interfered in our election in sweeping and systematic fashion. Second, the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired with the Russian government in its election interference activities. We did not address “collusion” which is not a legal term. Rather, we focused on whether the evidence was sufficient to charge any member with taking part in a criminal conspiracy, and it was not.”
Mueller reiterated that the Special Council “would not make a determination as to whether the president committed a crime. That was our decision then and it remains our decision today.”
Republicans and Democrats alike will get the chance to grill Mueller on his handling of the Russia investigation, why he refused to pursue obstruction charges against President Trump, and ultimately whether the president will (or should) face impeachment proceedings.
The Department of Justice has already warned Mueller that he is to limit his testimony to only what he was willing to include in his final report “because matters within the scope of your investigation were covered by executive privilege.”
Before we get any deeper into this, it’s important to note that according to a CNN poll from March 2019, a whopping 0% of Democrats wanted to continue the conversation about Russian collusion, saying that it didn’t matter heading into the 2020 Presidential election.
BizPac Review will continue to provide live coverage of the Mueller testimony, so check back frequently for updates.
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