Democrats Attack The “Arrogance” of Bill Barr As The Attorney General Prepares A Public Report

There was a time when deadlines had a real bite. The term originated from the Civil War when a line was laid out around the notorious Andersonville prison camp. If Union prisoners crossed the line, they were dead.

Thankfully, a deadline is not nearly as lethal or a literal as it once was.  Particularly in politics.  The Democratic leadership in the House of Representatives garnered a great deal of excitement – and press – over its deadline to Attorney General Bill Barr to turn over the unredacted Mueller report yesterday . . . or else.  The House Judiciary Committee also demanded Barr’s immediate appearance as a witness. Barr’s response was a yawn that you would hear all the way down Constitution Avenue.  That fact is that Congress can do little in forcing such a release and it knows it.  Barr has promised to release a public report within a couple weeks – an impressive feat in redacting a report hundreds of pages in length for a variety of protected forms of information.  Congress can certainly subpoena the report, as it has promised today, but such a fight can take months if not years to work its way through the courts.

The problem in such a challenge is the Democratic rhetoric has outstripped political reality. After Barr produced his summary of the conclusions of the Special Counsel, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi denounced Attorney General Bill Barr’s actions on the Special Counsel Report as “condescending” and “arrogant.”  Others called it all a “cover up.” The reason for this attack may a bit difficult for those outside of Washington to understand. Barr submitted a four-page summary of the conclusions of the Special Counsel to Congress and the public in a remarkably short time.  Within a couple days of receiving the report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller, Barr publicly released a four-page summary of his conclusions.  Pelosi was outraged by the sheer arrogance of the act and declared “it wasn’t the right thing to do.”  The problem is that it is precisely what Barr is required to do under the Special Counsel regulations and, even though the Democrats are loathe to admit it, Barr has been faster and more open that most critics antificipated.

The Summary

Pelosi was objecting to the fact that Barr would presume to offer his summary of the conclusions rather than yield to the demand that the entire unredacted report be released immediately: “I have said, and I’ll say again, no thank you, Mr. Attorney General, we do not need your interpretation, show us the report and we can draw our own conclusions.”  

The problem is that Barr is required to share those conclusions in a summary. The regulations controlling the investigation stipulate that, after the submission of a confidential Special Counsel report, the Attorney General will issue “brief notifications, with an outline of the actions and the reasons for them.”  In order words, Barr is being denounced for being “condescending” and “arrogant” because he is following the rules that Congress demanded that he follow.

On Friday, Barr himself tried to correct the widespread misleading statements about the summary.  Noting that House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler referred to the notification as a “four-page summary of the Special Counsel’s review,” Barr stated the obvious that this was merely the “summary of its ‘principal conclusions’—that is, its bottom line.”  Nevertheless, experts and hosts on CNN and MSNBC continued to fuel the false narrative that this was a summary of all of the investigative findings.

Some have even argued that those principal conclusions may be misrepresented by Barr since a couple days is simply not enough time to digest hundreds of pages of the report.  These attacks are based on two flawed assumptions. First, they absurdly suggest that Mueller’s report did not have its own summary of its findings or conclusions.  Second, they suggest that Mueller was not consulted and has remained silent in the face of a false summary.  Neither seems plausible or likely.  Mueller (who has a long friendship with Barr) is working with Barr on the redactions to the report and has remained active in this process.  Thus, it is not only likely that the summary was an accurate account but that Mueller was fully briefed on that summary.

The Report

Various Democratic members have insisted that nothing will suffice unless Barr releases the full and unredacted Special Counsel report. Indeed, in his confirmation, various Democrats demanded that Barr promised to release the report even though it was not completed and Barr had not seen its content.  If Barr had made such a promise to secure his confirmation, he would have been manifestly unqualified for the position.  Various types of information are by law prohibited from public disclosure including Rule 6(e) information from grand juries – information that can only be disclosed by court order.  There are also three areas noted correctly by Barr that require redactions: classified information, statutorily protected privacy information and information related to ongoing investigations.

There were two notable exceptions involving the release of investigative reports containing grand jury information but both cases involved findings of criminal conduct by a president. The Justice Department released such information as part of the Watergate investigation detailing criminal conduct by President Richard Nixon.  Later, in 1998, Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr’s report was made public with grand jury information with allegations of criminal conduct by Bill Clintoin, including lying under oath.

 Barr has confirmed that the Mueller expressly concluded that there was not evidence establishing criminal conduct linked to collusion by Trump or his campaign. Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein concluded that there was not a basis for a criminal obstruction charge.  Accordingly, Barr is proceeding with conventional redactions before making the report public.  Of course, if Congress concludes that there is a basis for impeachment in the report, it can revisit the issue and seek a court order for the unsealing of the information.

The Process

Most importantly, Barr has announced that he does not intend to give President Trump a copy of the report before it is made public.  Barr noted “Although the President would have the right to assert privilege over certain parts of the report, he has stated publicly that he intends to defer to me and, accordingly, there are no plans to submit the report to the White House for a privilege review.”  

         In his letter, Barr cited the four areas of possible redaction but did not include executive privileged information, which would normally be included. He expressly declared that he had “no plans to submit the report to the White House for a privilege review.” The waiver of all executive privilege claims in such a report is as commendable as it is unprecedented.  Indeed, for all of his inappropriate comments on the investigation, Trump has far outstripped the Obama Administration which routinely refused core oversight material to Congress. In this case, Trump is waiving all privilege arguments and will not even been given an advance copy of the public report. 

What is particularly impressive about this decision is that Trump’s legal team has been reserving privilege claims.  Disclosures to Mueller did not constitute waivers since it was all within the Justice Department but there appears to be a complete waiver and Trump (and Barr) deserves credit for that decision.

On Friday, Barr again reaffirmed his intention release the report, stating “Everyone will soon be able to read it on their own. I do not believe it would be in the public’s interest for me to attempt to summarize the full report or to release it in serial or piecemeal fashion.”

So to recap.  Barr already issued the required notification without even a reasonable delay.  He has committed to releasing a public report in a matter of weeks – no small feat with hundreds of pages with statutorily protected information.  He is making all redactions with the assistance of Mueller and has confirmed that executive privilege claims have been waived.  

When I testified at the Barr’s confirmation hearing, Democratic senators asked what Trump expected in nominating Barr as Attorney General.  I responded that I did not know what Trump thought he was getting in Bill Barr but I know what he got.  Barr could be expected to do two things. First, he will do exactly what the law demands. Second, he will do exactly what he promised to do.  He promised to get as much of the Special Counsel report to the public as possible. Thus far, he is doing exactly that – and in a fraction of the expected time.

79 thoughts on “Democrats Attack The “Arrogance” of Bill Barr As The Attorney General Prepares A Public Report”

  1. Setting aside that the Russian indictments have nothing to do with the Trump campaign.

    And setting aside that they involve a “best guess” from the Intelligence Community

    With regard to putting something on the Internet, Facebook ads and such, Mueller is claiming that constituted “information warfare against the United States” and therefore impaired the functioning of the Federal Election Commission.

    Setting aside that I find invoking the Federal Election Commission and the Internet dubious,

    What exactly can I put on the Internet in support of a campaign, or in opposition to one, accurate or not, that does not “impair the functioning of the Federal Election Commission?”

    Appreciate any feedback.

  2. We have had numerous indications over the period of many months that L4D/ Anonymous had an inside informant on the OSC team.
    The certainty of her “knowledge” of “what Mueller knew” at any given stage and the specific predictions of when Trump Jr. would be indicted, etc., must have been the result of a mole in the OSC feeding this “proprietary information” L4B (aka Anonymous).
    Now she appears to be confident in her “knowledge” that the Mueller report contains no ckassified information, so it can and could be released unredacted.
    Then she shifts the topic to the contents of the grand jury proceedings, and displays her wealth of knowledge😉😊😄 about the lack of any classified material that could be related to those proceedings.
    (Leaving the “sealed” and “secret” provisions of those proceedings aside).
    There’s not much point in going over and exchange re possible redaction requirements for the Mueller report itself …..not when the delusional L4B “solves” all of these issues for us.

      1. A comment that is as profound as it is detailed….that’s very good, whichever anonymous Anonymous you happen to be.
        My guess, based on the distinctive vacuous content of your post, is that you are LT Anonymous.

  3. But the Attorney General is supposed to be the president’s ‘wing man’….that’s was part of Eric Holder’s job description, anyway. 😉

  4. I’ll try to avoid the use of the word “unhinged” now that I know it bothers L4B/Anonymous.
    Maybe “demented” could be substituted for “unhinged” in describing her behavior.
    In the spirit of compromise, I’ll try to use words other than “unhinged” going forward.

  5. If Barr did that and was found to have committed a felony ( and convicted), could Pencil Neck and others insisting that he commit that felony be convicted as conspirators?
    That’d almost be worth spilling classified material.🤓

  6. “Mueller (who has a long friendship with Barr) is working with Barr on the redactions to the report and has remained active in this process”

    And by insisting that Barr is covering up evidence of collusion or obstruction Democrats are taking the man they’ve spent two years putting on a pedestal…and throwing him under an omnibus. Apparently Robert Mueller is a Trump stooge too.

  7. The Dems and the Media both have blame.
    Ask me again and I’ll tell you the same.

  8. The release plan Barr has laid out is reasonable and proper. Mueller submitted a confidential report to Barr and Barr has duly submitted a summary to Congress with the understanding that the full report will be released subject to redactions as per law and policy. Along the way, Barr has had to define what a summary is and apparently needs to define what confidential means as well.

    It’s clear the Dems and media are tripling down on the narrative–Barr is being accused of covering-up, politicizing the DOJ and misrepresenting the findings among other grievances. Never mind that there is not a scintilla of evidence for any of the above or that Barr is following procedure and complying with the regulations. Apparently, the media, Schiff and Nadler haven’t learned anything from the whole Russia investigation saga–despite the Mueller/Barr conclusions, they still maintain there is collusion is plain sight (with no evidence to back it up) and the public is being asked to believe that Barr would stake his reputation on misrepresenting Mueller’s findings and moreover, Mueller would simply stand by idly and let Barr do it.

    In all likelihood, this will not end well for the Dems as the principal conclusions will not change and the narrative will ring hollow in short order. In the end, the Dems are betting the bank that they can find some fact or context that can credibly keep the Russia collusion/obstruction narrative alive and well for the 2020 election cycle. Maybe, but it’s not something you’d want to bet the bank on.

  9. Here’s something that really needs to be unredacted. Andrew Weissman discussing Manafort’s motive for lying about the polling data under questioning from Judge Amy Berman Jackson.

    And our view is, that is a lie. That that is really under — he knew what the Gates 302s were. It’s obviously an extremely sensitive issue. And the motive, I think, is plain from the [redacted], is we can see — we actually have — we can see what it is that he would be worried about, which is that the reaction to the idea that [long redaction] would have, I think, negative consequences in terms of the other motive that Mr. Manafort could have, which is to at least augment his chances for a pardon.

    And the proof with respect to that is not just Mr. Gates. So that I will say there’s no contrary evidence to Mr. Gates, but you don’t have just Mr. Gates’s information. You have a series of emails where we know that Mr. Kilimnik, in fact, is reporting [redacted]

    And probably the best piece of evidence is you have Mr. Manafort asking Mr. Gates to [redacted; print out polling data]. So, it’s — there’s — from three weeks ago, saying: [redacted].

    [repeated for emphasis] negative consequences in terms of the other motive that Mr. Manafort could have, which is to at least augment his chances for a pardon.

    1. Here’s something else that needs to be unredacted. Judge Amy Berman talking to Manafort’s lawyer about Manafort’s motive for lying about the Aug 2nd meeting at the Grand Havana Room at 666 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York.

      You can’t say you didn’t remember that because your focus at the time was on the campaign. That relates to the campaign. And he wasn’t too busy to arrange and attend the meeting and to send Gates [redacted] that very day. It’s problematic no matter how you look at it.

      If he was, as he told me, so single-mindedly focused on the campaign, then the meeting he took time to attend and had [redacted] had a purpose [redacted; to benefit the campaign]. Or, if it was just part of his effort to [redacted; line up the next job], well, in that case he’s not being straight with me about how single-minded he was. It’s not good either way.

    2. As a rule, I totally disregard anonymous commentary on the INTERNET. It is rather akin to a single anonymous source for damning revelations on both CNN and FOX that violation the old and very venerable Associated Press Style Guide which required two independent, disconnected sources.

      1. Ah, and this “anonymous” appears somewhat addled, or else I am, as the posts here are incomprehensible.

        1. You would be far less addled, What’s-Your-Name, if you could only realize that an un-redacted version of the court transcripts posted above would be more readily comprehensible to you and to everyone else. Which is why the anonymous commenter at issue cited those redacted excerpts as examples of information that needs to be un-redacted.

          1. A lot of things would be more ‘comprehensible”and transparent if we declassified ALL currently classified material.
            Why apply that “logic” only to the demand for an unredacted Mueller report?

            1. Because the information at issue is not classified. It’s grand jury information. And there’s reason to believe that that grand jury information may show that Trump abused the pardon power to suborn perjury and tamper with witnesses–most especially Paul Manafort.

        2. It’s not you Charles A. Those who have observed Late4Dinner aka “anonymous” aka “Lies4Breakfast” have noted the same thing.
          I call it the use of the “Dianese” language ( L4B has said her name was Diane), and that language and other stunts are designed to thwart any kind of normal exchanges.That’s one of the games she plays and one of the reasons I have officially recognised her status as a troll.
          She litters many of her comments with dozens of questions, but rarely answers any questions to her. She constantly deflects and changes the subject when she’s ‘called on” a mistake or an outright lie.
          She frequently distorts the words that we’re actually written in the JT columns and other comments; she often writes “reviews” of the columns in her daily columns she uses the comments’ section for.
          In those reviews, or in distorting the words of others, she’ll use phrases like “what Turkey is REALLY saying”, then proceeds with her very own version of what she claims Turley said.
          She has arrogantly made statements like “surely Turley can not be that obtuse” in pretending to be the ONE TRUE Con.Law expert here.
          There are a few other stunts she pulls that I could mention, but I’ll leave it at that. Some people have completely run out of patience with her over time, and completely ignore her. Some have continued to try to have a straightforward, normal exchange with her…..that’s not why she’s here.
          There are even some who have run out of patience with her who slam her and her stunts in fairly blunt comments about her.🤬

      2. What’s-His-Name said, “As a rule, I totally disregard [court transcripts featuring selected quotations from Judges and special counsel lawyers . . . “

  10. Speaking of Andersonville, who was the only person executed for war crimes after the Civil War?

    If you said Andersonville commander Henry Wirz give yourself a big ol’ rebel yell!

    1. There may have been another.

      Is being assassinated for tyrannies the same as being executed for “war crimes?”

      Is commencing, without constitutional authority, an inordinately mortiferous, unconstitutional war against a peace-loving, sovereign foreign nation a war crime warranting capital punishment?

      “Sic semper tyrannis.”

      – John Wilkes Booth

      There may have been another.

  11. Nanny P., the “Nanny State” spokesman, demands that the U.S. Attorney General violate the law as but one tactic promoting her strategy to obtain as much “free stuff” as possible for democrat (i.e. communist) constituents who simply “sell” their votes to the highest bidder. Hysteria and incoherence is the new national motto. Nanny P. and accomplices, Abe Lincoln and the 19th Amendment have distinctly “injured,” if not assassinated, the Constitution.

    First “Crazy Abe” Lincoln illegally seized power, nullified the Constitution and conducted a vicious “Reign of Terror” to begin America’s Progressive movement into communism, starting with the elimination of societal classes and the “deconstruction amendments,” then the Progressives advanced America into a furtherance of communism in an irrational fog of hysteria and incoherence by improperly and bizarrely ratifying the injurious and unconstitutional 19th dumbmendment.

    Now we may understand why the Founders set the vote criteria as: Male, European, Age 21 with 50 lbs. Sterling or 50 acres, and why they could not grasp that those criteria would not stand in perpetuity, lest they assured their codification.

    “If it were probable that every man would give his vote freely, and without influence of any kind, then, upon the true theory and genuine principles of liberty, every member of the community, however poor, should have a vote… But since that can hardly be expected, in persons of indigent fortunes, or such as are under the immediate dominion of others, all popular states have been obliged to establish certain qualifications, whereby, some who are suspected to have no will of their own, are excluded from voting; in order to set other individuals, whose wills may be supposed independent, more thoroughly upon a level with each other.”

    – Alexander Hamilton – The Farmer Refuted, 1775

    “the people are nothing but a great beast…
    I have learned to hold popular opinion of no value.”

    -Alexander Hamilton

    “…of such a nature as will not injure the constitution,…”

    ” And if there are amendments desired, of such a nature as will not injure the constitution, and they can be ingrafted so as to give satisfaction to the doubting part of our fellow citizens; the friends of the federal government will evince that spirit of deference and concession for which they have hitherto been distinguished.”

    – James Madison, Proposed Amendments to the Constitution, June 8, 1789

  12. Efforts to defraud voters must stop.

    Recent behavior include:
    1. Releasing fraudulent op research just before an election
    2. Democrat activists within the FBI exonerating Hillary Clinton of felony crimes, by claiming intent to commit espionage was a requirement to charge her.
    3. Aforementioned activists using fraudulent op research to get a FISA warrant, while failing to disclose the source of the document to the Court.
    4. Democrat activists in the media claiming for 2 years that Trump is working for the Russians
    5. Democrat activists in the media failing to inform voters about the Uranium One deal, the Kazakhstan Uranium mining deal, Rosatom, Bill getting huge speaking fees during Uranium One, and the Clinton Foundation getting a Russian donation of $145 million.
    6. Democrat activist educators, from pre-K to grad school professors, using the classroom to spread false information about conservatism, and punishing conservative students.

    Let the American people know the truth and make up our own minds. Investigate wrongdoing in our intelligence community. Whatever the law states about disclosure is what should be followed for the Mueller Report. If the Democrats want more, then go through the process and get a court order. Read the redacted report before making a determination about whether a court order is warranted.

    For decades, Democrats have accused Republicans who disagree with them as not caring about the poor, the elderly, the environment, racist, homophobe, Islamophobe, greedy…It’s bigotry pure and simple, and I am tired of it.

    1. Karen, Honey, Please stop repeating the slop you heard on Faux News yesterday. Yes, we know that they’re trying to defend Barr’s clearly politically-motivated foot dragging by pivoting to accuse HRC, the FBI, the Justice Department of wrongoing and criticizing the grounds for the FISA warrants. I want to see the “oranges”, too. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Well, maybe you should watch some channel other than Faux News. Agent Orange mispronounced “origins” by saying “oranges” multiple times when feebly attempting to criticize the FISA warrants. What evidence did these warrants produce? Obviously something that makes Trump look bad, because Faux News and Trump wouldn’t harp about it if the facts were otherwise. You don’t know what’s in the Mueller report, but you can bet your life there’s a lot there that makes Trump look bad, which is why Barr is dragging his feet and why he campaigned for the AG job.

      There was no “Uranium One” deal cooked up by Democrats, mainstream media is not infested with Democratic “activists” and there was no exchange of uranium for exorbitant speaking fees and donations to the Clinton Foundation. Multiple agencies were involved in the uranium sale, not just the State Department. You’ve been corrected on this lie that Hannity harps about at least a couple of times, so stop saying it.

      And, Honey, you should do some research on what constitutes “conservatism”. Conservatives favor reducing the debt, not growing it at an historic rate and by an historic amount. They don’t favor tariffs or closing the border with Mexico which hurts multiple businesses. The auto industry would grind to a halt if he does this. The U.S. would run out of avocados in 3 weeks, too. Conservatives don’t favor constant lying or colluding with a hostile foreign country ran by a dictator who murders his critics, either, nor someone who brags about assaulting women. Trump is not a conservative, and most people in this country disapprove of him, his so-called agenda, his behavior, and they want to see the full Mueller report ASAP.

      1. Listen to the arrogant feminist “anon” diane talk down to karen! This is how university admins and HR bureaucrats and other poltical correctness functionaries talk. In public it’s all hugs and kisses and tolerance, in private, they’re like, get to the back of the bus, now!

        Kind of like Morris Dees, your hero, out there suing klansman even as he discriminated against women and black folks working for him!

        1. That’s Natacha, not Diane. Natacha’s more loosely wired than Diane. More emotionalism, fewer red herrings.

          1. Absurd,
            At one time that was probably true. At this stage, I think they’re equally unhinged.

            1. The Check Valve just posted a call for the political repression of Democratic activists who are demanding to read the Mueller report on the grounds that those Democratic activists will supposedly be “using the classroom to spread false information about conservatism, and punishing conservative students.”

              Your opinion of who is unhinged is, itself, unhinged.

    2. Karen S- as always you cut to the chase even though in this instance the chase seemingly is never ending. I just saw the story about Rep. Richard Neal (Chairman of House Ways and Means) demanding six years of tax returns from President Trump and his various businesses. According to the story, no such request has been made of a President for 45 years. The litany of abuses and unanswered questions in your post reads like fiction except nobody could make this stuff up, and only fools can pretend it never happened. Being a sore loser is a state of mind most people grow out of but the democrats in congress and their media counterparts are proof positive that adolescence can be delayed, even into chronological old age. I too am tired of it.

      1. Here’s an idea: Both you and Karen can send emails to the Trump White House demanding that Trump immediately Lock Up The Democratic Party and their mass media minions–STAT. Or not. What do you think? You do think. Don’t you?

        1. Yes, I do. Give it a try sometime yourself, and for your sock puppets.

  13. The Special Counsel’s report on Bill Clinton, complete with ALL exhibits, deposition transcripts, etc. was delivered to Congress 48 hours after it was written. That report did not have implications for cheating to win the Presidency. It took a large box truck to deliver 2 copies. I saw the footage of the report being delivered a few days ago. That report was also several hundred pages in length, but Republicans wasted no time getting it out there. Here, we have Barr dragging his feet, dreaming up every kind of excuse to delay and redact, hoping that the actual report, sans redactions, won’t see the light of day until after 2020. Barr’s motives are suspect for the simple reason that he campaigned to get the job, which included oversight of the Mueller investigation, by sending an unsolicited memo to the Justice Department opining that Trump couldn’t be indicted while in office. Next, he drafts a letter containing his spin on the results of Mueller’s investigation, which the Dotard and his supporters claim constitutes full exoneration, even though Barr’s actual letter says otherwise. Barr is clearly playing politics with this report, delaying release for as long as possible so the Dotard can take multiple victory laps and continuing to raise campaign money. The Democrats, on the other hand, are carrying out the will of the American people, who want the full report released, at least to Congress. Members of Congress see classified material and grand jury material all of the time. A judge could order release of grand jury testimony and exhibits. Barr is playing games. The only conclusion is that he must have a lot to hide.

    As to Trump’s “noble” waiver of executive privilege, Jon, you should watch some channel other than Faux News. Trump has walked back his support for releasing the full report. Barr only stated that there were “no plans” to run it past the White House. Well, now it seems that the White House may want to invoke privilege, so no brownie points there for Barr. Oh, and did you know that he is an “anchor baby” because his father was born in Germany, according to Trump’s statements yesterday? How ironic for a former birther to make such a patently false claim. Of course, public records show that it was Freidreich Drumpft, the grandfather, who was born in Germany, not Fred Trump, Trump has claimed to be first-generation American on several prior occasions, so he didn’t mis-speak. He lied, of course, again, but why?

    1. I don’t defend the Ken Starr debacle — although it was nothing like this. But it was a special prosecutors report on Bill Clinton. Not a special councils report. That means the special prosecutor checked and double checked that grand jury language was not included. Here the Justice Department is required to do that.

      1. Gee, Steve. The only problem with your comment is that it is the exact opposite of the truth. Because Starr was an Independent Counsel, therefore Starr worked for Congress, was hired by Congress, reported directly to Congress and the supervising Judge of Starr’s grand jury had no authority to withhold anything that Starr wanted to transmit to Congress–which was pretty much all of it, Steve. But other than being exactly backwards wrong, you could have been right.

        1. I stand corrected. You are correct he was a special council

          Rather the procedure he was required to follow was different. Mueller was required to hand the report to Barr and Barr to summarized it within the time he did. If the report is to be publicized, he must redact classified material and grand jury material.

          Hence the delay between report and dissemination. Starr was ordered to redact and then submit to Congress. Hence no delay.

      2. How old are you SteveJ? The Starr report not only cost twice what the Mueller report did (not even counting the seized assets which in effect put it in the black), it took twice as long and included details of sexual encounters then read on the floor of the House, and finally ended in the impeachment of a President.

        1. If you want to claim the Starr debacle is worse than the Russia Hoax, you’re entitled to your opinion. They’re both up there on the absurd list. The Starr investigation had some basis in law albeit a weak one. The Mueller investigation had no foundation whatsoever. The Russia Hoax reminds me of the spectacle of the McCarthy hearings. Starr didn’t impeach Bill Clinton. So I don’t think that aspect of things belongs in a comparison of the two investigations. But as for the impeachment, Republicans made fools out of themselves.

          1. Steve, the legal basis for the Mueller investigation was Conspiracy Against the United States under the defraud clause of that statute 18 USC 371. We know that for several reasons, not the least of which would be that Barr’s preliminary summary letter to Congress of Mueller’s major conclusions alludes to the “entering into an agreement” element of that crime. Additional reason include that the 12 GRU officers were indicted for Conspiracy Against the United States under both the “offense” and the “defraud” clauses of 18 USC 371, while the IRA and Concord Management were indicted for conspiracy only under the “defraud” clause of that same statute.

            Had Manafort not breached his cooperation agreement, Mueller might have been able to make the case for Conspiracy to Defraud the United States against the Trump campaign. The critical element in that case, as in so many other criminal cases, is establishing criminal intent. The most likely defense against a conspiracy case is that the defendants had had intentions other than the furtherance of a criminal conspiracy for each of the overt acts they had committed. Manafort may have been the only witness who could have testified to the intent, criminal or otherwise, of Donald Trump Jr. and his father Donald John Trump.

            The notion that Mueller’s investigation was unfounded is, itself, an unfounded notion.

            1. Assuming that this law could ever have been applied to Trump, there wasn’t a scintilla of evidence for it. The Russian indictments have NOTHING to do with the Trump campaign. And the Russian indictments involve a dubious “best guess” from the Intelligence Community about “suspicious” organizations. I suppose you could claim that an investigation of them had a weak basis. But the indictments aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on.

              1. SteveJ, you ignore numerous meetings between Trump campaign staffers and Russians which the staffers later lied about, including a whopper Trump himself constructed. It is public knowledge that one meeting involved all the top campaign people with a Kremiln connected Russian who promised dirt on Hillary as the bait, eagerly swallowed by the campaign people. Further our intelligence agencies and the FBI concurred that Russians interfered in our election with the goal of helping to elect Trump. The Trump campaign was alerted to these iRussian intentions but rather than report incidents to the FBI, they pursued them.

                You’re welcome to your opinion too, but it would have more weight if you didn’t deny or ignore known facts.

              I’ve mentioned before that L4B/Diane/Anonymous should learn to distinguish her beliefs from facts.
              She may have lacked some necessary advice from her family, but she can still learn of the very basics she failed to grasp.

            3. Setting aside that the Russian indictments have nothing to do with the Trump campaign.

              And setting aside that they involve a “best guess” from the Intelligence Community

              With regard to putting something on the Internet, Facebook ads and such, Mueller is claiming that constituted “information warfare against the United States” and therefore impaired the functioning of the Federal Election Commission.

              Setting aside that I find invoking the Federal Election Commission and the Internet dubious,

              What exactly can I put on the Internet in support of a campaign, or in opposition to one, accurate or not, that does not “impair the functioning of the Federal Election Commission?”

              Appreciate any feedback.

            4. Of course Congress “have the authority” to Subpeona; getting material they subpeonaed us a different matter.
              They can also make criminal
              referrals to the FBI and DOJ, and they MIGHT get a timely response on those, and little else.
              I don’t know if any federal grand jury proceedings are, technically, classified.
              Whether they are or not, they are almost always held in secrecy, and the proceedings are sealed.
              And if those proceedings involve dealing with classified material, wholesale unsealing the a grand jury proceedings would involve exposure of classified material.
              Whether or not the grand jury record itself is “classified”, in addition to being sealed.
              There are some detailed, esoteric publications dealing with various characteristics of the federal grand jury system.
              And some of those publications deal with the uncommon procedure of unsealing those proceedings, and the set of necessary requirements to unseal them.
              I don’t pretend to be an expert in this area; I’ll leave that pretense to someone with a long history of claiming expertise is this area and ALL OTHER areas.
              But this unsealing proposal is not likely to be as simple and straightforward as our Resident Expert claims.
              The other issue, of the redaction of the Mueller report and the demands for immediate unredacted release to Congress, will be a political football for the foreseeable future.
              There is some irony in the fact that some of the same people defending the hyper-secrecy and length of the OSC investigation repeatedly dismissed concerns about the lack of information provided to the American public along the way, and that they’re now in the “full, immediate disclosure” camp.

    2. So who is to deal with the classified parts (mostly addenda or attachments) of the report? The Congress has no authority over any of it and releasing it would be a violation of Federal Law.

      1. Dave G.
        I went into that a bit in a comment below….it was actually a comment about a Natcookoo/ Anonymous rant that was posted earlier.
        There are also articles that go into some detail about the DOJ’s guidelines for what might be legitimately redacted.
        Ultimately, that’s Barr’s call to make, but he is reportedly reviewing the Mueller report with Rosenstein and Mueller himself.

        1. ( Dave G. – It could have been an L4B/Anonymous rant….it’s getting harder to tell them apart as the lunacy of one resembles the lunacy of the other more and more).

        2. Tom, Well, with regard to “Ultimately,” I find I must mildly disagree with regard to the classified portions. Nothing in the law permits the AG to declassify documents not originating within DOJ. And, the implementing regulations of the existing classification regulations give that authority first to the “original classification authority.” Thus, if there is an NSA report that is TOP SECRET as a result of sources and methods disclosed in any Mueller documentation, the chain of authority for declassifying the documents is in this order, as my memory serves having been one of these people: The original classifying authority (a person), the Agency Director or cabinet secretary, and the President. The AG would only have authority over a document classified by Mueller or the FBI or other DOJ original authority (One must be specifically authorized to create a classified document or a general traunch of similar documents like transcripts of phone calls between US persons and Russians (again, sources & methods). Thus, Barr will have to go through channels to the OA to request declassification or redaction of specific classified info.

          While members of Congress do often receive information from the Executive Branch at the SECRET level, TOP SECRET (TS) and TS Code Word documents are never made available to all members. The is in part why the “Gang of Eight” exists.

          I recognized this is decidedly in the weeds, but I was an original classification authority in the Department of Defense both as a career military officer and as a member of the Senior Executive Service.

          1. Thanks for your response, Dave G.
            If it is in fact beyond Barr’s legal capacity to reveal the full Mueller report completely unredacted, irrespective of classified material it may contain, then it appears that the demands from those in Congress that he do exactly that are insisting that he violate the law.
            Is that an accurate assessment?

            1. In my opinion, yes, Barr would be committing a serious felony were he to release classified information without appropriate controls or restrictions in response the the House subpoena (although I’ve not read the subpoena). Given the cavalier attitude that Congressman Schiff appears to have toward classified info, Barr should be on notice that providing the full report to Congress is likely to result in a deliberate release of classified info to unauthorized persons and Barr would be complicit in that easily anticipated release. While I’m no particular fan of Bob Mueller, having work with the FBI from 1978 to 1999, I know he would never agree to nor be complicit in a compromise of intelligence value classified info.

              1. There are ways to declassify information without committing a felony. For instance, when Trump just blurted it out while conversing with the Russian Ambassador and the Russian Foreign Minister. That is a perfectly legal way to declassify information. But never mind that. Because it’s not the classified information that needs to be sent up to Capitol Hill. It’s the grand jury information that needs to be transmitted to Congress along with Mueller’s report minus whatever classified information needs to be redacted (probably not much). It’s a pretty safe bet that Mueller converted most of the classified information into grand jury information.

                1. As I understood Jerry Nadler yesterday, he was asking for every page of the Mueller report. If I am wrong about that, then my other comments in this thread remain factual though irrelevant to the situation at hand. The code word documents spoon fed to any Grand Jury do become part of the sealed record. As I have described elsewhere in this rather pedantic thread, I’ve been a part of creating the kind of Grand Jury information about which you’ve elected to opine. One thing I learned in the process is that one must very carefully choose the intel analyst who testifies as it only takes a second of lapsed concentration for that person to go off on a tangent before the Grand Jury and you find yourself spending hours, even days, dealing the inadvertent mention of sources and methods that worked so hard to avoid during your days of witness prep.

      2. Grand jury information is not classified information. Congress does have the constitutional authority to subpoena, or simply to request, the transmittal of grand jury information to a proceeding of the House Judiciary Committee. The supervising Judge, Beryl Howell, can withhold from Congress any grand jury information that would be prejudicial to any upcoming trail. There’s a high degree of probability that most of the classified information relevant to the special counsel’s investigation has already been converted into grand jury information. That sort of parallel construction was one of the several purposes of the Mueller probe.

        P. S. The POTUS can declassify pretty much anything, anytime, for any reason or for no reason at all. What the POTUS can’t do is to assert executive privilege over grand jury information.

      3. The classified information is not the point. It’s the grand jury information that Congress has the authority to request or subpoena under the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. Here’s a relevant excerpt from the article at Wikipedia:

        The rules are promulgated by the Supreme Court of the United States, pursuant to its statutory authority under the Rules Enabling Act. The Supreme Court must transmit a copy of its rules to the United States Congress no later than May 1 of the year in which they are to go into effect, and the new rule can then become effective no earlier than December 1 of that year.

        Congress retains the power to reject the Court’s proposed rules or amendments, to modify them, or to enact rules or amendments itself. Congress has rarely rejected the Court’s proposed amendments, though it has frequently passed its own.

        The rules are initially drafted by an Advisory Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States, which consists of appointed judges, U.S. Department of Justice representatives, practicing lawyers, and legal scholars. After public comment, the draft rules are submitted to the Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure, which in turn submits them to the Judicial Conference, which finally recommends them to the Supreme Court for approval. The explanatory notes of the drafting Advisory Committee are published with the final adopted rules, and are frequently used as an authority on their interpretation.

        1. Dear Anonymous,

          I try to stay in my own lane, hence my commentary of the nuts and bolts of declassification as a former originating classification authority. Frankly, I’d prefer to rely upon my actual experience on the US Gov side in prosecutions under the Arms Export Control Act where much of the evidence upon which we relied was collected by the very systems likely used by the US Intel community in finding the Russians members of the GRU who were charged in one of Mueller’s indictments (and will obviously never be prosecuted). I’ve been the guy who worked with the US attorney to craft how we could provide credible testimony to the Grand Jury empaneled in Alexandria without giving away sources and methods critical to US National Security. The GJ’s “output” was not classified and neither was what we gave to them to achieve it. However, as the TOP SECRET Code Word documents were the foundation of the case — and the basis for the Government’s search warrants (sound familiar?), they were part of our case. The same process was likely used by Mueller and his team, and those classified documents may be attachments to the Mueller report. Of course, Mueller, knowing the Congress leaks like a sieve, may have elected not to include them, leaving those documents separate for the Gang of Eight at a later date, subject to DOJ negotiation. I’m sure their chosen path will be clear soon enough. And, as Tom Nash has pointed out, it is a very reasonable assumption that Mueller and Barr have had their heads together for weeks.

          Frankly, Anonymous, replying upon Wikipedia strikes me as doing damn little to enhance your reputation here. I may be a bit dated here, but I’ve not lost much of the decent education received from GW Law back in the mid-1970s. I now work in the commercial word advising clients in this arena, including a number of DC top ten law firms, but thanks for the interesting lecture, nonetheless.

    3. I’ve pointed this out before, but I’ll briefly repeat it to those who are determined to keep repeating the “Barr did his summary in two days” meme.
      The Special Counsel reports to the Attorney General ( unless, like Jeff Sessions, the AG has been kneecapped from the time he took office).
      AG Barr is the AG, and was confirmed was AG as w several weeks before the news was announced that Mueller completed and officially delivered his report to the AG/DOJ.
      For those stupid enough to believe that Mueller and Barr had no contact in the weeks preceeding the official delivery of the report, that Barr had no idea what would be in the report, and that Barr speed-read through the report over the course of a weekend and slapped together a summary in the same time frame, I won’t attempt to pry them away from that cherished belief.
      The reports are that Barr, Mueller, and Rosenstein are now jointly discussing the best way of releasing the report.
      Specifically, how much ( if anything) needs to be redacted in accordance with DOJ policy/ procedures.
      And the acceptable amount of unredacted material released to Congress that Pencil Neck will spill on his TV series.
      If this were all accomplished by Barr/ Mueller/ Rosenstein in a timeline demanded by those throwing a party a tantrum in Congress about “stalling” , then it’d be followed up by the same “rush job” complaint so popular with respect to the Barr summary.
      If this trio is deliberative and takes a few weeks to deliver the report to Congress, then the “stalling/ you’re not meeting our deadline” complaint covers that.
      We had over 2 1/2 years of investigations ( to date). A major question going forward is how long and how aggressively certain members of Congress want to continue playing these asinine games.
      They may easily miscalculate the perceived political benefit from these games, and find their stunts backfiring.

      1. Nadler’s self-righteous pronouncements and demands might be an amusing sideshow if we lowly American citizens had not just spent $25M unnecessarily. Are narcissists a protected class under the

  14. Progressive hero Assistant AG Rod Rosenstein co-authored Barr’s summary report, which report progs condemn.

    To date, this is the best explanation I’ve heard for typical demoncrap prog behavior: the group comprises almost exclusively God hating atheists. Where would otherwise occupy true religion in their lives resides instead their political affiliation. The very core of their entire gestalt is this: if you disagree you are wrong, and you are less of a person than am I.

    Nothing else better explains their hatred toward and desire to destroy the First Amendment. If/when someone speaks something against their religion, their first and most immediate desire is to kill that person. They are not quite there yet (progressive version of Sharia Law), but they want it so bad they can taste it.

    The closest they can get so far is to stifle our Constitutional right to say it and/or do whatever they can to keep others from hearing it (social media censorship). They also love to starve to death their detractors by separating them from their ability to earn a living, e.g. convincing Paypal to cancel and/or deny accounts to perfectly legal organizations like the NRA, etc.

    Christiane Amanpour’s ridiculous and outrageous desire to incinerate the 1st Amendment is net gain for the enemies of progressive demonrats. Anyone who thinks GOP candidates shall not use snippets of Amanpour’s question in 2020 must have the brain capacity of the average progressive.

  15. There’s a lot of hypocrisy going on here! I personally hope the entire, unredacted report will be released immediately with all supporting documents. Unlike these Democrats, I am also glad that wikileaks released Clinton’s e-mails as well as evidence of US war crimes under Bush. Of course, Democrats want Assange’s head for that transparency (as does Trump who benefited from wikileaks)!!! I guess some transparency is more equal than others!!!!

    I wouldn’t trust Barr. He already covered up war crimes in Latin America, as did Mueller. We also see Mueller involved in lies concerning WMD’s so we could go and kill Iraqi’s and steal their resources.

    Democrats have spent the last two years worshiping these and various other war criminals. Only now, when the Russiagate lies they have perpetrated on the American people are being exposed, they suddenly don’t like their former IC hero war criminals. Go figure.

    Here’s an excellent discussion about the IC, wikileaks and the supposedly hacked e-mails:

    1. Democrats have spent the last two years worshiping these and various other war criminals.


      1. A well thought and intelligent reply, for someone with an IQ around room temp or less than, IOW, the typical progressive dimwit.

  16. Well again, this is the most surreal “investigation”, and I use that word liberally, that I have ever seen. And it as benefited Trump. And it will continue to benefit Trump for as long as Democrats wish to self- sabotage by keeping this farce in the news.

    1. Had Trump been a public official, capable of committing an official act, in an official capacity, at the time that Trump was negotiating a real-estate deal worth $300 Million to him, while running for president in an election in which his partner in that real-estate deal had interfered, then Trump would have committed solicitation of a bribe–which is an impeachable offense. However, Trump was not a public official, capable of committing an official act, in an official capacity, at the time that Trump was playing footsie under the Table with Russia while running for president. Consequently, the special counsel’s investigation was based upon the conspiracy statute instead of the bribery statute.

      1. Given current and past insider information about the conclusions of the Mueller report, what Mueller knew and when, who would be indicted and when, it’s not really necessary to get that excited in anticipation of the release of the Mueller report.
        It’s conclusions have been, and continue to be, known and revealed by L4B/ Anonymous for well over a year.
        Given her advanced knowledge that she’s shared here, she’s probably ruined the ending for everyone else when they actually read the report.

  17. I’ve read enough of Barr’s legal scholarship to known that a simple declarative sentence from him might seem like condescension to the mere mortals on the Hill could conned a majority voters back home to send them to D.C. Likewise, it is difficult to disagree with JAY’s assessment of Nancy and others on the Hill, though that would not be Barr’s style.

    1. Typo alert. The above should read “…on the Hill who conned a majority..

      I swear I proofread that sentence…

      1. Dave G.,
        I’ve had the same problem with words that I start to type being completed for me as different words.
        At first I thought it was an “auto-correct” feature I could not disable, but more likely it’s “the Russians” 😮 meddling again.

        1. LOL. Thanks for that, Tom. There is always room in America for a good conspiracy theory!

          1. Then here it is: The Mueller investigation established a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Oleg Deripaska in regards to Russia’s election interference activities. AG Barr and DAG Rosentstein highlighted the fact that, since Deripaska is not a member of the Russian government, therefore the Mueller investigation did not establish a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and The Russian government in its election interference activities. It’s possible that Mueller concurs with Barr and Rosenstein’s assessment of the major conclusions of the Mueller investigation. But it’s also possible that Mueller does not concur with Barr and Rosenstein’s assessment of the major conclusions of the Mueller investigation. The way to settle that question is to transmit the Mueller report and Mueller’s grand jury information to Congress.

            BTW, Oleg Deripaska is a one-in-a-million Super-Brain. There just aren’t that many other people in this world who are Deripaska’s intellectual peer-rivals. And that probably means that Deripaska wanted Mueller to establish a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Oleg Deripaska without being able to tie that same conspiracy to Putin and the Russian government in its election interference activities.

            1. Hey, whatever floats your boat. I don’t have an opinion on the subject, but thanks for sharing nonetheless.

  18. “Pelosi denounced Attorney General Bill Barr’s actions on the Special Counsel Report as “condescending” and “arrogant.” ”

    Nancy, honey, some people just deserve to be treated with arrogance and condescension.

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