It was a House Budget Appropriations Subcommittee meeting with Attorney General William Barr. One would think it was the House or Senate Judiciary Committee because Democrats to a person on that subcommittee drilled the Attorney General about the Mueller Report. “Russia, Russia, Russia!” Very little referenced Department of Justice appropriations. Even in her opening remarks, the Chairperson of the full House Appropriations Committee, Nita Lowery (D-NY), attacked the A.G. for not already releasing the full Mueller Report to the World, AND that he chose to send to Congress a 4-page “Summary Letter” — her words, not his — instead of simply releasing the approximate 400-page Mueller Report in its entirety to the American people.
Fortunately for all those members of Congress in the room, Attorney General Barr immediately when asked explained how the report will be released:
- It WILL include redactions. Those redactions (according to the A.G.) will occur in 4 specific areas. One is to keep confidential details of the significant number of cases that are currently still being litigated by various courts; Two is pursuant to federal law the redactions will include details of grand jury testimony that legally cannot be released; Three is to protect the identities and details of confidential investigators, their witnesses, and their ongoing investigation details of cases; and Four is the complete details of those who were investigated by the Mueller team but were not implicated or indicted.
- A.G. Barr stated his intentions are to color code each redaction in his report so as to identify which of these 4 categories apply to all redacted material.
- When asked, the Attorney General stated details of a case decided last week by the Washington D.C. Federal Appeals Court confirming the law that prevents grand jury testimony and identities from being released publicly and that the DOJ will comply with that law.
Under United States law, there are certain details of the report that Barr is prohibited from revealing, including details about individuals connected to the investigation who have not been charged with any crime. Bob Mueller indicted 37 people and probably investigated more than that and many of them were not indicted, and material about them can’t be released. That’s NOT an “opinion” of someone at the DOJ — it’s in the law.
One conservative pundit explained Democrats scurry to get the full Mueller report said the Democratic push for the full release of the Mueller report is not a legal argument at this point, but a political one. “Democrats want to know what is in there that is negative about the President, but not negative enough to meet the level of beyond a reasonable doubt that prosecutors have to meet in order to charge him. They don’t need to know it, they want to know it for political reasons.”
Here’s “The Rest of the Story:” The Law
Pursuant to 28 CFR § 600.8: “At the conclusion of the Special Counsel’s work, he or she shall provide the Attorney General with a confidential report explaining the prosecution or declination decisions reached by the Special Counsel.” The counsel’s report is to be “handled as a confidential document as are internal documents relating to any federal criminal investigation.”
The attorney general also has an obligation to share the special counsel’s findings with Congress, although there is no duty to disclose the full report. Under 28 CFR § 600.9(a)(3), the attorney general must provide to the chairs and ranking minority members of the House and Senate Judiciary Committees, “to the extent consistent with applicable law, a description and explanation of instances (if any) in which the Attorney General concluded that a proposed action by a Special Counsel was so inappropriate or unwarranted under established Departmental practices that it should not be pursued.” According to Barr, “There were no such instances during the Special Counsel’s investigation.”
The regulations are silent on whether the Judiciary Committees can release the reports given to them from the attorney general. With regard to the full special counsel report, the decision is in the hands of the attorney general. Under 28 CFR § 600.9(c), “The Attorney General may determine that public release of these reports would be in the public interest, to the extent that release would comply with applicable legal restrictions.”
Democrats “Change” History
You may be old enough to remember the Bill Clinton/Ken Starr Whitewater Investigation that rocked along for years and resulted in the impeachment of Bill Clinton. (Of course, the Senate declined to confirm his impeachment) Under the law that was used to start and operate Ken Starr’s investigation of Clinton, there was NO stipulation regarding the release of Starr’s report when the investigation was completed. Starr chose to release the full report to the public. Democrats went NUTS! Current House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerold Nadler (D-NY) was a member of Congress at the time and went absolutely mad in public at the release of the full Starr report, and the certainty of the damage that release would do to the Department of Justice and its sources.
Nadler was not by himself. Numerous other Democrats expressed the same feelings. But it’s different in THIS Special Counsel Report. Of course! This president is not a Democrat. Enough said.
“Congress has asked for the entire Mueller report, and underlying evidence, by April 2. That deadline stands,” House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said last Friday after Barr said he would provide the full Mueller report to Congress by mid-April. “In the meantime, Barr should seek court approval (just like in Watergate) to allow the release of grand jury material.” He added: “Redactions are unacceptable.
Schiff in making the above statement made a 180 degree turn from his previous stance on the public release of similar information.
Schiff (D-CA) is one of several Democrats who blasted then-House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (D-CA), during the last Congress for releasing a GOP memo on alleged abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). The memo described the unverified Trump “dossier” as critical for obtaining surveillance warrants to spy on a Trump campaign aide. The GOP memo, which was also four pages long, was released in an unredacted and declassified format, with White House approval.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said at the time that President Trump’s decision to release an unredacted version of the memo was a danger to national security. “President Trump has surrendered his constitutional responsibility as Commander-in-Chief by releasing highly classified and distorted intelligence,” Pelosi said in a statement on Feb. 2, 2018. “By not protecting intelligence sources and methods, he just sent his friend Putin a bouquet.”
Following the release of the report, Schiff, who was the ranking member of the committee at the time, joined with Democrats on the committee to declare the GOP memo “risks exposure of sensitive sources and methods for no legitimate purpose.”
The only difference of current Attorney General Barr NOT releasing the full Mueller Report as written is because the report is regarding an investigation of alleged wrongdoing by members of the Trump Campaign in conjunction with Russia during the 2016 election cycle — a claim that was totally debunked by the Special Counsel.
Democrats reasoning? Totally based on allegations — NO PROOF!
One more thought: Democrats Schiff, Swalwell (D-CA) and Nadler have each made subsequent claims — even after the completion of the Mueller investigation in which he found there to be NO wrongdoing by the Trump Campaign — maintain there has been and is absolute evidence of Russian collusion during the election by the Trump Campaign.
It is laughable that these three with their weighty Congressional obligations of leadership and purported claims to embrace full transparency have NEVER offered up to the DOJ or Robert Mueller that evidence they claim to have that implicates the President. In this journalist’s opinion, IF they actually have such evidence that would implicate the President of illegal activities, their NOT providing it in its entirety to DOJ officials or the Mueller investigators would in itself be Obstruction of Justice!
Let’s just be completely honest. Democrats are proving, again and again, they have NO agenda other than doing anything to get rid of Donald Trump. Remember the definition we gave you two years ago that explains the difference between Liberal Democrat and Conservative Republicans? If you don’t remember, here it is again: Republicans do not like it when someone holds opposite political positions than they do. Democrats not only do not like it when someone holds opposite political positions, but they also HATE THE PEOPLE THAT HOLD THOSE VIEWS!
“You’re being a bit cruel, Dan,” some will say. “Democrats just have different ideas.” While that definitely is true, Dems formerly were only too glad to enter into discussions with those with opposing views, respecting the rights of others to disagree. We don’t see that anymore. Democrats have been bolstered in presenting their “alt-left” ideas to the public in a new and dangerous way: media attack dogs have actually weaponized the delivery of Democrat messaging. It all revolves around this theorem: “Of course anyone can hold a differing opinion. But they’re wrong in holding that opinion. And because they don’t believe the same things Democrats do, they are not only wrong, they are evil as are their ideas!”
How can Democrat leaders expect to garner sufficient votes from the American populace to win the Senate and the White House in 2020? As shown in the 2016 presidential election, there are not enough Democrat voters in the nation to give them the margin necessary to win. Are they so bold as to think the current noise and hatred being spewed by the 18 declared Democrat candidates for president in 2020 will make-up enough votes to push them over the top? Surely not! Yet their actions on a daily basis seem to show that is exactly what they are thinking.
Meanwhile, the American economy is soaring, unemployment in every sector is at historical lows, job creation is through the roof, and paychecks are increasing take-home pay for those in the middle class. All of these were promises made by Donald Trump as a candidate that he has somehow through all the noise and venom emanating from the Left put in place for Americans. And the Attack Dogs in the media simply ignore these facts choosing instead to concentrate on one thing: “Dump Trump!”
I’ll close by saying this: I must be stupid. I cannot — try as I do — understand why ANY American voter would support any of the 18 declared Democrat presidential candidates and the two others expected to jump in when all they do is scream AGAINST President Trump, totally ignoring the significant accomplishments listed above and the many others by this administration.
I don’t want to say Democrats are stupid. In fact, I know they are not. But one thing is abundantly clear: “IF” Democrats are NOT stupid if they expect the support of the limited legitimate policies that they are promising to Americans they will implement if elected, they definitely think American voters are stupid!
And you know what? I think I’ve hit on something: I think Democrats not only hate President Trump and all he stands for, I think they feel exactly the same about his conservative supporters!