Trump: Mueller should stick to findings. After months of expectation, special counsel Robert Mueller has agreed to testify before Congress to talk about the report on Russian Intrusion in american elections. Trump is not too happy about it.
The former special prosecutor, who had investigated for almost two years the Russian interference during the 2016 presidential election, was summoned by two investigative committees of the House of Representatives.
This ultimate rebound was likely to provoke the ire of the US President. Donald Trump, who has not ceased to see the Russian inquiry as a “witch hunt”, had ruled, once the report of the special counsel was made public in mid-April, that the case was closed.
In his more than 400-page investigation report, Robert Mueller detailed the many contacts between Moscow and Donald Trump’s campaign team, but concluded he did not find “sufficient evidence” of any agreement. The Republican billionaire had immediately deemed himself “exonerated”, while on the Democratic side, several voices had called on the Justice Department to make the report public. Robert Mueller also reported disturbing pressure on his investigation by the president.
Surprisingly, the former special prosecutor broke from his silence in late May, to explain that his sprawling investigations had not exonerated Donald Trump, but that only Congress was able to prosecute a sitting president. An austere man who conducted his investigations out of sight, Robert Mueller also hope that his public intervention will serve to put an end to his work.
However, in a letter in letter sent to Mueller Congressmen Jerry Nadler and Adam Schiff expressed the ‘importance’ of the special counsel’s testimony. “We further understand that there are certain sensitivities associated with your open testimony. In particular, the Special Counsel’s Office referred several criminal investigations to other offices at the Department of Justice, and certain matters are ongoing. Your office, moreover, admirably limited public comment while the Special Counsel’s Office’s work was ongoing. You have also explained that you prefer for the Special Counsel’s Office’s written work to speak for itself.Nevertheless, the American public deserves to hear directly from you about your investigation and conclusions. We will work with you to address legitimate concerns about preserving the integrity of your work, but we expect that you will appear before our Committees as scheduled,” they wrote.
With a majority in the House of Representatives, with powerful powers of investigation, the Democrats launched a battery of investigations against the president. On the other hand, the question of whether or not to initiate impeachment proceedings against Mr. Trump divides on both sides. Given the Republican majority in the Senate, such a enterprise is almost sure to fail. Democratic party leaders are therefore reluctant to take this route. In the run-up to the 2020 poll, they are worried that it will muffle their campaign message on issues that really matter to voters, tired of the political war in Washington.
Donald Trump on Wednesday had already accused, without proving it, the special prosecutor Robert Mueller of committing an offense during his investigation into alleged interference by Russia in the 2016 presidential election.
As a guest of the Fox Business Network, the US president claimed that Mueller had “illegally” destroyed communications between two former FBI employees, Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, who exchanged disparaging comments about Trump. “Mueller destroyed them illegally. He destroyed all emails (…) Robert Mueller also destroyed their text messages. He destroyed them. They are no longer there. And it’s illegal, it’s a crime,” he said.
No immediate reaction could be obtained from a spokesman for the prosecutor. The Justice Department, which oversaw the “Russian investigation”, declined to comment on the president’s remarks.
Donald Trump was speaking a few hours after the announcement of the public hearing of the prosecutor Mueller set for July 17 before the Committees of Judicial Affairs and Intelligence of the House of Representatives. In his report, released in April, Robert Mueller concludes that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election and that members of Donald Trump’s campaign team had repeated contacts with Russian officials but he was not able to prove the hypothesis of collusion with Moscow.
The former director of the FBI also highlighted Trump’s willingness to influence the progress of his investigation, without deciding whether these interventions could or could not be interpreted as obstruction of justice – a crime punishable by impeachment.