The released and redacted Mueller report left an opening for House Democrats to impeach the President based on the President verbalizing some actions that would obstruct justice if his staff had followed that direction. He said the President didn’t obstruct because no one would do it. That’s his opinion.
The report is divided into two volumes: 207 pages on collusion, and 241 on obstruction.
The 448-page document was littered with redactions but notably says that the special counsel did not clear Trump, saying: “If we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President clearly did not commit obstruction of justice, we would state so.”
“Based on the facts and applicable legal standards, however, we are unable to reach that judgment. Accordingly, while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”
Mueller says: “The conclusion that Congress may apply the obstruction laws to the President’s corrupt exercise of the powers of office accords with our constitutional system of checks and balances and the principle that no person is above the law.”
Mueller used a very broad interpretation of obstruction, which Barr did not.
TRUMP THOUGHT HE WAS “F*ED”
The report paints a picture of an angry President Trump who went outside official channels, voicing his frustration at the Russia investigation from the beginning of his presidency.
When Mueller was appointed, Trump allegedly ranted: “I’m f***ed. This is the end of my presidency.” The left says this proves he knew he was guilty.
However, the President repeatedly referred to his own innocence and had no motive to obstruct.
That quote by itself could be seen by many as proof of guilt. And many news outlets, including MSNBC’s Julia Ainsley, USA Today, Reuters and Shep Smith at Fox reported that, stopping there.
But Trump’s follow-up lines made clear why he was bothered: “Everyone tells me if you get one of these independent counsels it ruins your presidency. It takes years and years and I won’t be able to do anything. This is the worst thing that ever happened to me.”
When you just look at the first part, it sounds like Trump is worried about getting caught. When you look at the rest of his comments, he appears more worried that he can’t be effective with an investigation dogging him.
Trump’s anger and frustration were what Barr considered when it came to an obstruction charge and intent.
The bottom line is the special counsel was never impeded.
The President tweeted this:
As I have been saying all along, NO COLLUSION – NO OBSTRUCTION! pic.twitter.com/BnMB5mvHAM
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 18, 2019