Highlights From Robert Mueller's House Testimony
What did you think of the Mueller hearing?
by Countable | 7.24.19
What's the story?
- Former special counsel Robert Mueller made his highly-anticipated appearance on Capitol Hill Wednesday, answering questions about his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign and possible obstruction of justice by President Donald Trump.
- The House Judiciary Committee hearing focused on Volume 2 of Mueller's report: possible instances of obstruction of justice by Trump.
- The House Intelligence Committee hearing focused on Volume 1: Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Here are some key moments from the two hearings:
Mueller said Trump can be prosecuted after he leaves office—but did not say if Trump should be prosecuted.
Here's the exchange between Mueller and House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY):
Nadler: "Is it correct that if you had concluded that the President committed the crime of obstruction, you could not publicly state that in your report or here today?"
Mueller: "The statement would be that you would not indict, and you would not indict because under the OLC opinion, excuse me, a sitting president cannot be indicted, it would be unconstitutional."
Nadler: "Under Department of Justice policy, the President could be prosecuted for obstruction of justice crimes after he leaves office, correct?"
Mueller told Nadler that his report does not exonerate President Trump.
Nadler: "So the report did not conclude that he did not commit obstruction of justice? Is that correct?"
Mueller: "That is correct."
Nadler: "And what about total exoneration? Did you actually totally exonerate the president?"
Nadler: "Now, in fact your report expressly states it does not exonerate the president?"
Mueller: "It does."
"The finding indicates that the president was not as exculpated for the acts that he allegedly committed. It is not what the report said." -Mueller
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) ripped into Mueller for not reviewing the motivations behind the the dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele on behalf of Democrats during the 2106 campaign.
Mueller: "It is not a witch hunt" and "it was not a hoax."
Ahead of the hearings this morning, Trump tweeted that Mueller's investigation is "the Greatest Witch Hunt in U.S. history, by far!"
House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) asked Mueller if Trump’s repeated statements about the special counsel investigation were accurate.
“It is not a witch hunt,” Mueller said.
Mueller said that Russian interference is not a hoax, Moscow interfered in the 2016 election, and the Trump campaign appeared to welcome that help.
"The indictments we returned against the Russians — two different ones — were substantial in their scope, using the scope word again. And I think we have underplayed to a certain extent that aspect of our investigation that has and would have long term damage to the United States that we need to move quickly to address.” -Mueller
Mueller warned against future (and current) foreign interference in campaigns.
"Many more countries are developing capabilities to replicate what the Russians have done... They are doing it as we sit here and they expect to do it during the next campaign," Mueller said.
What do you think?
Did Mueller's testimony today change anything for you? Was it a win for Democrats, Republicans, transparency? Are there still questions you want answered? Take action and tell your reps, then share your thoughts below.
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