Here is the Mueller Report

I am doing legal analysis for CBS News and BBC in New York today but, for those who have not read the report, it is linked below.

As I discuss in today’s column, the report does clear the President of the original allegations of collusion with little ambiguity or reservation. Ultimately, he was also cleared of obstruction through the decision of both Barr and Rosenstein.

I believe the report also vindicates Barr on the criticism of the expected redactions. There was surprising light redactions, particularly on obstruction. Moreover, while some are insisting that Barr’s summary to Congress was not reflective of the report, it did accurately give the conclusions. As for his press conference, it is doubtful that any description would be acceptable to many people. That is why he would have been wise to minimize those descriptions in favor of his discussion of the process.

Here is the Report: Redacted Mueller Report

265 thoughts on “Here is the Mueller Report”

  1. Excerpted from the Mueller report:

    Collectively, the social media accounts reached tens of millions of US. persons. Individual IRA social media accounts attracted hundreds of thousands of followers. For example,
    at the time they were deactivated by Facebook in mid-2017, the “United Muslims of America” Facebook group had over 300,000 followers, the “Don’t Shoot Us” Facebook group had
    over 250,000 followers, the “Being Patriotic” Facebook group had over 200,000 followers, and the “Secured Borders” Facebook group had over 130,000 followers. According to Facebook, in total the IRA-controlled accounts made over 80,000 posts before their deactivation in August 2017, and these posts reached at least 29 million US persons and may have reached an estimated 126 million people.

    [end excerpt]

    There are many redactions in the section on the IRA and the social-media active-measures campaign, culminating in one page entirely redacted at Page 30 of the Mueller report due to “Harm to Ongoing Matter”.

      1. Excerpted from the article currently at the bottom of this page:

        In particular, most observers pointed to stark differences between Barr’s statements and the section in the Mueller report concerning the possibility that Trump sought to impede the Trump-Russia inquiry and thus, might be guilty of obstruction of justice. In fact, the Mueller report makes it clear that a key reason Mueller did not seek to prosecute Trump for obstruction was a longstanding Justice Department legal opinion saying that the Justice Department can’t indict a sitting president. Barr omitted that part of Mueller’s reasoning in his statements saying that Mueller hadn’t decided whether to charge Trump.

        [end excerpt]

        Good old Whitewash Barr is earning his old moniker all over again.

  2. TRUMP STUCK IN TURLEY’S MODERATION BOX!

    I posted a series of tweets from The Real Donald Trump. An actual chain he sent out yesterday reacting to The Mueller Report. They were ‘bitter’ to say the least. And that’s the reason, of course, I posted them.

    But when they landed in Turley’s Moderation Box I remembered Trump used the ‘Bull’ Word in one message. His entire attitude revolved around that term. Just total disdain for Robert Mueller and everyone who ‘talked’.

    The dialogue looked like the language of a New York mobster. Which is peculiar because Trump, on paper at least’, is essentially as an old money WASP. So how did he pick up this habit of talking like a gangster?

    Sometimes you wonder if Trump is not unlike the late Aaron Hernandez. Hernandez was a well-paid Tight End of the New England Patriots. Which should have been enough for any young athlete. Yet Hernandez longed to be a gangster. Which led him to a murder conviction, prison sentence and suicide.

    So one has to wonder if Donald Trump shares that problem with Aaron Hernandez. He’s not content with being an old money WASP. He secretly longs to run The Gambino Crime Family. So Trump uses the mannerisms of John Gotti and Albert Anastatsia. Those were Trump’s hero’s growing up; tough-talking gangsters from the boroughs.

    1. Peter Hill STUCK IN TURLEY’S MODERATION BOX!

      Your typical copying probably included more than two addresses so according to the rules of the blog it was held for moderation. Perhaps you feel entitled to break the rules.

      I saw some of the tweets by Trump and you can call them bitter if you wish but as the Mueller Report shows this entire investigation was a sham and if everything surrounding Russia was supposed to be looked into they seemed to skip anyone with Democratic affiliation. This political hit scam has caused great harm to the nation since very little attention has been paid to America and its citizen’s needs. We can blame the Democrats and the media while including people like the Shill who never miss an opportunity to profit off of garbage like this investigation.

      1. It’s up now, Alan. Take a look at it and tell me if that language sound ‘presidential’. Those tweets look more like John Gott wrote them.

        1. Have you ever read what you have written, Peter? He is trying to make things clear for dolts and I think you dislike his clarity.

  3. Ruh Roh! Last time I checked in here the Trumpsters were celebrating that the part was over, and there still partying.

    Someone better tell your leader. After being briefed on the details in Mueller’s report, as opposed to the sunshine pumping from the Tool General Barr, he doesn’t share your triumphalism, is in a black mood, and is threatening the “rats” who talked.

    Anyway, I think the party is just starting. Buckle up pigmys!! Better bone up on the details. That’s where devil is!

      1. Excerpted from the Mueller report:

        Some individuals invoked their Fifth Amendment right against compelled self-incrimination and were not, in the Office’s judgment, appropriate candidates for grants of immunity.

        [end excerpt]

        The smart money says that Donald Trump Jr. is one of those individuals who invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. However, there’s a redaction for grand jury information at the end of one of the paragraphs that explains why Don Jr. was not subpoenaed to testify before the grand jury. Think about that. Don Jr. refused to give a voluntary interview with the special counsel’s office and then the special counsel’s explanation to the grand jury that Don Jr. would not be subpoenaed to testify before them gets redacted as “secret” grand jury information.

        Can you say “Whitewash”? Do you know what “Whitewash” means?

        1. There is another possible explanation. If Donald Trump Jr. is still the “target” of an ongoing grand jury investigation, then Mueller would not have subpoenaed Don Jr. to testify before the grand jury. However, were that the case, then the redaction at issue should have been “color-coded” for “ongoing investigation” instead of “grand jury information”. You know what? I’m sorely tempted to take both of those explanations at the same time with respect to different grand juries. Don Jr. took the Fifth with Mueller and Don Jr. is still a “target” of some other grand jury investigation.

          Did you know that Mueller made 14 referrals to other U. S. Attorney’s offices? That’s Fourteen Ongoing Investigations.

      1. You got exactly what you wanted. Didn’t you? What are you complaining about, now? To the winner go the “sores”?

      2. Late4Dinner says: October 16, 2018 at 7:36 AM
        Tabarrok is in for such a rude awakening. Somewhere between November Seventh, 2018 and, let’s say, January Twentieth, 2019, Mueller will bring indictments against key members of the Trump campaign–including, especially, Trump’s Son, Don Jr.–on charges of Conspiracy to Defraud the United States. What happens next after that is debatable. Will a federal judge dismiss the charges against Don Jr. or any other key member of the Trump campaign? If Mueller indicts the strong case, then precious few federal judges will dismiss the charges. It’s doubtful that Mueller will indict the weak case; because a federal judge might dismiss the charges on the weak case. Will Trump then deploy the pardon power to vacate the indictments against members of the Trump campaign including Trump’s son, Don Jr.? I’m guessing yes.

        Absurd, you mean that wanting something to happen and believing it will happen is not the same thing as “making it happen”?

          1. As I tried to explain to you a long time ago, I’m under no obligation to guess correctly about anything at all.

            And neither are you. But you might want to “let the cork out.” You’ll feel much better if you do.

            1. Risperidone is now generic. If that fails you can always get Haldol, the go-to drug for decades for people like you

              Because we care

              —-

              Risperidone, sold under the brand name Risperdal among others, is an antipsychotic.[2] It is used to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and irritability associated with autism.[2] It is taken either by mouth or by injection into a muscle.[2] The injectable version is long-acting and lasts for about two weeks.[3]

              Haloperidol, marketed under the trade name Haldol among others, is a typical antipsychotic medication.[3] Haloperidol is used in the treatment of schizophrenia, tics in Tourette syndrome, mania in bipolar disorder, nausea and vomiting, delirium, agitation, acute psychosis, and hallucinations in alcohol withdrawal.[3][4][5] It may be used by mouth or injection into a muscle or a vein.[3] Haloperidol typically works within thirty to sixty minutes.[3] A long-acting formulation may be used as an injection every four weeks in people with schizophrenia or related illnesses, who either forget or refuse to take the medication by mouth.[3]

              1. There’s an alternate explanation that is far simpler: Trump abused the pardon power to tamper with witnesses–including, especially, Paul Manafort, who is likely to have been the linchpin of the conspiracy and who systematically undermined his own credibility as a witness such that the special counsel’s office had no choice but to declare Manafort “useless” as w witness and therefore in breach of his cooperation agreement.

                Now, if Manafort still thinks that Trump is going to pardon him, then maybe Manafort is the psychotic patient. Unless Trump is the psychotic patient, instead, and Manafort knows that Trump is going to pardon him . . . someday. That truly would be crazy.

                1. Odds are that it’s neither Trump nor Manafort who are “psychotic patients”.
                  I won’t mention the name of the delusional prophet🤯😵🤪 here who uses her institution’s computer for internet access, mostly in the wee hours of the morning.

                  1. Right. It’s only “mocking” when you do it. When Mark M. does it, it’s an imposture of your birthright as an Emoji.

                    1. Mark M. cuts and pasted and re-uses the same tired lines hundreds of time, often without any relevance to what someone actually wrote.
                      I haven’t counted the number of people in these threads he’s insulted with no real basis; it probably numbers in the dozens, if not scores.
                      And not surprisingly, L4B and Mark M. are Mark M.’s biggest fans.
                      The problem with L4B’s commemts, and at least one of the problems, is that she presents what she wants to believe as actual facts. And she is a shameless, hyperpartisan propagandist who will distort what others have written if she thinks she’ll ” score points” in doing so.
                      After that goes on daily for month after month, you can be sure that it becomes “mockable”. And there are actually some here in these threads who get tired enough of her daily columns here that they’ll give her the ” “recognition” that she’s earned.

            2. If I make statement that “you’re in for a ride awakening”, because sometime within the next few months the Mueller will drop all charges against Roger Stone, that statement, made in those words, is not “a guess”.
              It’d be either an indication that I thought I had a gift for prophesy, or an inside track in the legal proceedings in that case.
              Declaring flatly that something ”will” happen is different from saying you ”guess” it will happen.
              Did you read what you wrote?

                1. There’s an outside chance that the charges against Stone might be dismissed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson. But Mueller is through with all of his prosecution and declination decisions. So Mueller will not drop the charges. IIRC, the United States Attorney in charge of prosecuting Stone is either Jonathan Kravis or Aaron Zelinski. One of those gentlemen might drop the charges against Stone if Stone’s lawyers succeed at their graymail scheme for forcing discovery of the entire, un-redacted version of the Mueller report. But Judge ABJ would have to enable that graymail scheme. That doesn’t strike me as particularly probable.

                  1. The prosecution team for Roger Stone includes assistant U.S. attorneys Jonathan Kravis and Michael Marando, and prosecutors Jeannie Rhee and Aaron Zelinsky.

                  1. I seem to remember somebody recommending bills of attainder (or some such nonsense) for Rosenstein, Mueller, Comey and who knows who all else. Ask George. He’ll tell you. Do you remember anything like that, Triply Absurd?

                    Maybe it was the pirate Lafitte (or however you spell his name). You know. The guy who wanted Congress to issue Letters of marque to have the Deep State arrested by “privateers”. Maybe he was just “mocking” in more or less the way you were just “mocking” the way Trump, himself, was only “mocking” when he said, “Russia, if you’re listening . . . “

          2. And yet they mock people of faith for believing

            ___

            Psychosis is an abnormal condition of the mind that results in difficulties determining what is real and what is not.[4] Symptoms may include false beliefs (delusions) and seeing or hearing things that others do not see or hear (hallucinations).[4] Other symptoms may include incoherent speech and behavior that is inappropriate for the situation.[4] There may also be sleep problems, social withdrawal, lack of motivation, and difficulties carrying out daily activities
            – Wiki

  4. https://www.wsj.com/articles/targeting-bill-barr-11555714643

    Targeting Bill Barr: Unlike Loretta Lynch, the AG does his duty on ‘prosecutorial judgment.’

    Mr. Barr was trying to satisfy the Democratic demand to see the report as soon as possible while he vetted the details for material that had to be redacted for sound legal and intelligence reasons. His four-page summary fairly characterized its conclusions on collusion and obstruction of justice while promising the full report soon. He even quoted Mr. Mueller’s line that the report “does not exonerate” Mr. Trump. A summary couldn’t contain the details that Mr. Mueller took 488 pages to describe, and now those details are public warts and all.

    Democrats also want Mr. Barr to take a vow of silence so they’re the only people who can explain what the Mueller report means. But Mr. Mueller works for Mr. Barr, who had no legal obligation to release any of the report to Congress. He made a prudent judgment in the public interest to do so, as he promised during his Senate confirmation hearing.

    Especially since Mr. Mueller abdicated on making any “prosecutorial judgment” about obstruction, Mr. Barr also had a duty to provide his own judgment on the law. Democrats may not like his conclusion, but at least Mr. Barr didn’t run for the tall grass like Obama-era AG Loretta Lynch did on the Hillary Clinton emails. She deferred, disastrously as later became clear, to FBI director James Comey’s inappropriate prosecutorial pre-emption. Mr. Barr stood up and took responsibility like a real Attorney General.

    Mr. Barr is also being attacked for making redactions, and House Democrats said Friday they’ll subpoena the unredacted version and all background material. Yet Mr. Barr says senior Members of Congress will be able to see all redacted material except for what is legally protected by grand-jury secrecy. Mr. Barr would have to petition the judge who supervised the grand jury to release such testimony, which is secret under the law to ensure people speak honestly and to protect the innocent.

    If Mr. Barr resists the subpoenas, Congress is likely to lose the legal fight. Congress has an interest in the report as part of its oversight duties, but the executive branch also has an interest in protecting the integrity of judicial proceedings. Congress will be able to see everything in the report except grand-jury material. Under the Supreme Court’s balancing test in the Nixon tapes case (U.S. v. Nixon), Mr. Barr is on strong legal ground.

    The larger Democratic concern is that Mr. Barr is serious about looking into the origins of the FBI’s surveillance of the Trump campaign in 2016. That could mean turning over such rocks as the FBI-Clinton-media collaboration over the discredited Steele dossier, or whether officials misled the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in seeking a warrant to eavesdrop on Trump adviser Carter Page. The Mueller report barely mentions the Steele dossier, which suggests the special counsel could not corroborate its allegations.

    The Justice Department Inspector General is expected to issue a report on much of this in the coming months, and criminal referrals can’t be ruled out. Several criminal referrals have already come from Congress. Any prosecutions would no doubt require Mr. Barr’s assent, and Democrats are sending a message that he’ll pay a political price if he doesn’t call the whole thing off.

    As he’s learning in this second turn as AG, Mr. Barr will be hammered no matter what he decides. The good news is that the country finally appears to have an Attorney General who can take the heat.

  5. My takeaways so far on the Mueller report:

    Nothing in the full report changes the principal findings made by Barr in his initial letter:

    1) No collusion
    2) Special Counsel did not make a determination one way or the other on obstruction based on “difficult issues of law and fact”
    3) AG Barr / DAG Rosenstein made a determination and did not find a basis for obstruction (even if one accepts the SC’s novel theory of obstruction)

    The Battleground of Obstruction

    Obstruction is quite obviously the battleground in play for Democrats; however, they will face the following challenges:

    1) It’s not clearly understood by the public that this is not obstruction in the established sense (ie, not obstruction in the Nixon or Clinton sense)–this is a novel, unprecedented and expansive theory of obstruction of justice wherein an otherwise lawful exercise of Executive power is transformed into obstruction if there is provable corrupt intent. Simply put, it is uncharted legal territory and an unsettled matter of law which has extremely significant legal and practical repercussions for the Executive Branch. As this becomes more evident to the public, the question will be: is it appropriate to engage in novel legal theories particularly when they can result in potential impeachment of a President? I understand that for the get Trump at all costs crowd the answer may be obvious but this question is fraught with significant concerns, precedents and issues that go far beyond the usual Trumpian narratives.

    2) Even if one buys into the novel legal theory, the ability to prove corrupt intent is significantly compromised by: 1) no collusion undercuts the notion of corrupt motivation, 2) a fact pattern of extensive cooperation with the Special Counsel and 3) the President’s right to publicly defend his Presidency in light of overwhelmingly negative, speculative and sometimes false media narratives and an investigation into Russia collusion that he knew was false.

    Ironically or perhaps predictably, a novel theory of obstruction led to a novel prosecutorial non-determinative outcome as Mueller neither charged nor exonerated–a state of affairs that would typically result in a declination decision. All in all, truly novel indeed.

    To Subpoena or not to Subpoena, that is the question

    The Special Counsel states that the reason he didn’t subpoena the President is because it would result in a “delay”. Moreover, the report found that the President’s written answers were “inadequate”, none of the answers given by the President dealt with obstruction and there wasn’t enough evidence on one side or the other to make a prosecutorial determination. If Mueller truly believed he had a strong case, then he would almost certainly be derelict in his duties to not pursue an essential avenue of considerable evidentiary importance–especially given that it would be imperative and incumbent upon the Special Counsel to be able to prove corrupt intent (questions essential to the state of mind) on the part of the President.

    In essence, the Special Counsel, when faced with a situation of inadequate evidence and in a position of being unable to make a traditional prosecutorial determination decided to simply forego the next logical step of subpoenaing the President because…wait for it…it would take too long. Color me more than skeptical but I believe the Special Counsel knew he would have clear the legal bar set by US v. Espy and knew clearly that he was unlikely to prevail and the resulting pall that would be cast over his investigation would be unacceptably damaging. Humorously, I can just envision the following dialogue: “Your Honor, I would like to subpoena the President which I know could plunge our country into a constitutional crisis and wreak all kinds of havoc and legal challenges but, well, you see….I…have this theory”.

    The Ever Mysterious and Enigmatic Rod Rosenstein

    From apparently invoking the 25th Amendment to notions of wearing a wire to unilaterally appointing a Special Counsel to providing Trump with the rationale to fire James Comey in the first place, my question is simply, to borrow a bit from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid: Who is this guy?

    There’s a story waiting to be told here somewhere but I don’t think anyone quite knows what it is yet. Stay tuned.

    1. M, there certainly was collusion as we have known for at least a year and a half, and which is why Trump and multiple other campaign and administration officials lied repeatedly. Mueller determined that was provable did not rise to the level of criminal conspiracy.

      Mueller determined that the legal steps necessary to compel Trump to testify in person would take too long – estimated to be about 2 years – and therefore beyond the reasonable time line for concluding his report. You are minimizing the importance of the timeline for obvious reasons. We do know that Trump was completely unforthcoming in his written responses, the guy who has claimed he has both a great mind and superior memory, couldn’t remember s..t about nothing., further evidence of being a guy who has something to hide.

      Among the major obstacles to Mueler’s determination to pass on the obstruction charges was DOJ policy regarding a sitting president, which leaves Congress as the proper authority to judge the evidence, not The Tool General Barr.

      Otherwise perfectly legal behavior can become criminal obstruction if done with intent to obstruct justice, so the argument about the president’s right to fire someone is nonsense.

      Unless there are impeachment proceedings – something which is probably not politically wise and doomed to failure given the complete ethical collapse of the GOP since Trump’s election – the stage will be public opinion and the next election, and even after just one day of reviewing the report, salacious details are turning the picture sour for the President, as he himself has reflected by his tweets.

      This is not about a blow job, and if the democrats in the House decide to begin impeachment proceedings, which I believe is now their duty, whether politically wise or not, the presentation of those details on that stage is potentially devastating.

        1. M, on collusion, the contact was about receiving help from a foreign government on an election effort. There is no doubt that the Trump campaign pursued and encouraged this help, while the Clinton campaign did not proactively involve itself in whatever Fusion did through its hired help – they hired them as an already begun oppo research firm – who happened to be MI6’s psst head of it’s Russian desk, and therefore, no one’s fool. We don’t know if his informants were Kremlin connected as were Trump’s, but again, given the Kremlin’s goals, that is unlikely and he would be a difficult mark.

          I don’t think you are giving proper weight to the importance of the timeline in a unique investigation of this nature. In 2 years the issue would likely be moot while both the country and those being investigated would be left twisting in the wind. This is not a standard case.

          We agree that Mueller’s testimony should clarify his intent regarding not charging the obstruction findings, though based on his obvious and controlling partisanship I give less weight to Barr’s statements. We’ll see.

          As to impeachment, which I previously – before the release of the report – thought was a bad idea, I don’t believe it is primarily a political decision, and that those who believe the known evidence disqualifies the president from holding office – I do – there is a duty to act without regard for the politics of the situation. I also now believe that the details are damaging enough to the president politically so that – unlike with Clinton – the dramatic and headline dominating hearings will convince the public that we’ve had enough of this liar in the White House. I don’t expect the GOP Senate to remove him unless the noise gets loud enough, and ultimately the decision will be made at the next election.

          1. M, on collusion, the contact was about receiving help from a foreign government on an election effort. There is no doubt that the Trump campaign pursued and encouraged this help, while the Clinton campaign did not proactively involve itself in whatever Fusion did through its hired help –

            1. If you read the Mueller report you have the answers to your first assertion.

              Re Clinton, from a legal standpoint just because you are a passive actor acting through intermediaries does not shield you from potential liability. In this case, the Clinton campaign paid Fusion GPS to collect dirt on Trump from Russian intelligence sources–the Steele Dossier. However, this is not illegal. How exactly the dossier was used, by whom and for what purpose(s) are very interesting questions that should be answered in the coming months.

              1. I’m not sure what you’re first paragraph means.

                Not sure where you’re going with the second, but it is doubtful if criminal conspiracy could be charged for actions by an independent contractor you hire unless you knew what they were doing, and I seriously doubt – though we don’t know – if Hillary was paying attention to whatever Steele was doing for Fusion. Given that he was most likely getting information from his known, non Kremlin sources with no quid pro quo beyond payment, it is hard to imagine what the crime was. As to what was done with the Dossier after Steele alerted the FBI, beyond an apparent leak, what do you imagine might be illegal there? From what we know, it was presented to a FISA court as evidence produced by Candidate #1s competition (they do not use names in FISA warrant applications). If the judges did not know who that referred to and cared, they are allowed to ask questions.

                1. ” though we don’t know – if Hillary was paying attention to whatever Steele was doing for Fusion.”

                  Though Anon can see that one has to attach the crime to the individual where Hillary is concerned he seems blind to that fact with regard to Trump.

                  Trumps investigation lasted over 2 years with all sorts of abuse by the DOJ along with multiple other investigations and a special counsel investigation made up predominantly of people that disliked Trump, had unfavorable interractions with Trump, were donors to the Clintons, worked for the Clintons, lacked arm’s length distance from the investigation, were friends of those involved in the FBI investigation, had documented animus for the President, etc. yet they found NOTHING they were looking for. In essence the enemy investigated Trump and did their best to sink him but couldn’t find credible claims against him.

                  On the other hand the investigation into Clinton regarding her involvement in the Steele Dossier is being traced backwards to the originators and the funding which is known to come from the Clinton campaign. Whether Clinton was sufficiently issolated from these events is unknown. The investigation into Clinton’s emails was undertaken in a sloppy manner where the conclusion (no guilt) was determined before the investigation was concluded.

                  Despite the unfavorable circumstances that faced Trump and the favorable circumstances that faced Hillary where the facts are still being accumulated we can see how blind Anon’s intellect is in continuing to ascribe guilt to Trump while claiming innocence on the part of Hillary.

                  How can anyone not see how Anon’s bias interferes with logical thought and conclusions?

                  1. Anon–you’re making some interesting assumptions:

                    1) Clinton/DNC hired Fusion GPS/Steele for $10M but would have no idea what Steele was working on. Frankly, that’s not plausible.

                    2) “Given that he was most likely getting information from his known, non Kremlin sources with no quid pro quo beyond payment”. The reality is Steele’s sourcing remains mostly unestablished but as a former MI6 officer who headed up the Russia desk, it’s safe to assume he could have a wide range of sources.

                2. My second paragraph is in response to a prior comment–neither campaign’s direct or indirect contact with Russians is illegal.

                  Re the Steele dossier, I do not state that I think there is anything illegal but that there are key questions and issues that need to be clarified. For example, if the dossier were know to be unverified and unreliable at the time of submission to the FISA court that would be problematic.

      1. Actually, the Mueller report did not establish collusion. You may think that contact with Russians constitute collusion but please remember contact with Russians is not illegal and nor is opposition research. As it stands, the Clinton campaign is the only campaign that accepted negative research (which it paid for) from Russian sources via Fusion GPS; however, while it may be unseemly it is not illegal.

        Regarding the timeline, prosecutors do not simply forego pursuing pivotal evidence because it results in a delay particularly if the believe that have a strong case. Mueller had to have made a risk/reward assessment given the evidence he had and the strength of his case. The fact that Mueller accepted written answers that explicitly excluded questions regarding obstruction was always the biggest tell of the Mueller investigation. I can assure that those answers will be absolutely replete with phrases such as “to the best of my recollection” which is why prosecutors are loathe to accept answers in written form in these situations.

        Whether Mueller would have charged the President but for DOJ policy is a key issue. Barr says Mueller assured him on at least 3 separate times that this was not the case. Mueller’s testimony should clarify this issue.

        Re impeachment, it’s vital to view this through a non-partisan lens as there has to be a credible bipartisan case for impeachment to avoid significant political backlash (see Clinton impeachment). Objectively, I don’t see it unless Mueller’s testimony reveals a hidden bombshell(s). Right now, you’re absolutely correct that impeachment is an entirely political calculation. The issue is not whether impeachment is warranted but whether impeachment is the pathway that will inflict the greatest amount of political damage to Trump.

        1. The Thirteenth Letter of the Roman Alphabet said, “. . . the Mueller report did not establish collusion . . remember contact with Russians is not illegal . . .”

          Given that “collusion” is not a crime, your claim that contact with Russians is not a crime is both superfluous and a halfway decent working definition of “collusion.”

          That was, of course, Anon’s point–which you totally missed. Now please allow me the “honor” of explaining to you your very own point, Thirteenth Letter: Mueller did not establish “conspiracy” [literally what Anon said] . . . Remember contact with Russians is not “conspiracy”–it’s “collusion.”

          Garble, garble, garble . . . Flaming Dipsticks with Broken-Off Tips!!!!!

          1. M. I had two years of Latin so I knew that.
            It’s highly probable that L4D picked up a smattering of Latin from the Black Mass ceremonies performed in her coven.

          2. L4D: if possible, try to remember that it is sometimes better to remain silent….than to remove all doubt.

  6. Mueller’s Report Speaks Volumes
    What’s in the special counsel’s findings is almost as revealing as what’s left out.

    By Kimberley A. Strassel
    April 18, 2019 7:26 p.m. ET

    A printout of the Mueller report in Washington, April 18. PHOTO: ERIK S LESSER/SHUTTERSTOCK
    By the fall of 2017, it was clear that special counsel Robert Mueller, as a former director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, was too conflicted to take a detached look at a Russia-collusion story that had become more about FBI malfeasance than about Donald Trump. The evidence of that bias now stares at us through 448 pages of his report.

    President Trump has every right to feel liberated. What the report shows is that he endured a special-counsel probe that was relentlessly, at times farcically, obsessed with taking him out. What stands out is just how diligently and creatively the special counsel’s legal minds worked to implicate someone in Trump World on something Russia- or obstruction-of-justice-related. And how—even with all its overweening power and aggressive tactics—it still struck out.

    Volume I of the Mueller report, which deals with collusion, spends tens of thousands of words describing trivial interactions between Trump officials and various Russians. While it doubtless wasn’t Mr. Mueller’s intention, the sheer quantity and banality of details highlights the degree to which these contacts were random, haphazard and peripheral. By the end of Volume I, the notion that the Trump campaign engaged in some grand plot with Russia is a joke.

    Yet jump to the section where the Mueller team lists its “prosecution and declination” decisions with regards the Russia question. And try not to picture Mueller “pit bull” prosecutor Andrew Weissmann collapsed under mountains of federal statutes after his two-year hunt to find one that applied.

    Mr. Mueller’s team mulled bringing charges “for the crime of conspiracy—either under statutes that have their own conspiracy language,” or “under the general conspiracy statute.” It debated going after them for the “defraud clause,” which “criminalizes participating in an agreement to obstruct a lawful function of the U.S. government.” It considered the crime of acting as an “agent of a foreign government”—helpfully noting that this crime does not require “willfulness.”

    Up to now, the assumption was that Mr. Mueller had resurrected long-ago violations of the rarely enforced Foreign Agent Registration Act of 1938 purely to apply pressure on folks like Paul Manafort and Mike Flynn. Now we find out that it was resurrected in hopes of applying it to campaign-period actions of minor figures such as Carter Page and George Papadopoulos.

    Mueller’s team even considered charging Trump associates who participated with campaign-finance violations for the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. Was that meeting “a conspiracy to violate the foreign contributions ban”? Was it “the solicitation of an illegal foreign source contribution”? Was it the receipt of “an express or implied promise to make a [foreign source] contribution”? The team considered that the law didn’t apply only to money—it could apply to a “thing of value.” Until investigators realized it might be hard to prove the “promised documents” exceeded the “$2,000 threshold for a criminal violation.” The Mueller team even credited Democrats’ talking point that former Attorney General Jeff Sessions had committed perjury during his confirmation hearings—and devoted a section in the report to it.

    As for obstruction—Volume II—Attorney General Bill Barr noted Thursday that he disagreed with “some of the special counsel’s legal theories.” Maybe he had in mind Mr. Mueller’s proposition that he was entitled to pursue obstruction questions, even though that was not part of his initial mandate from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Or maybe it was Mr. Mueller’s long description of what a prosecution of the sitting president might look like—even though he acknowledged its legal impossibility. Or it could be Mr. Mueller’s theory that while “fairness” dictates that someone accused of crimes get a “speedy and public trial” to “clear his name,” Mr. Trump deserves no such courtesy with regard to the 200 pages of accusations Mr. Mueller lodges against him.

    That was Mr. Mueller’s James Comey moment. Remember the July 2016 press conference in which the FBI director berated Hillary Clinton even as he didn’t bring charges? It was a firing offense. Here’s Mr. Mueller engaging in the same practice—only on a more inappropriate scale. At least this time the attorney general tried to clean up the mess by declaring he would not bring obstruction charges. Mr. Barr noted Thursday that we do not engage in grand-jury proceedings and probes with the purpose of generating innuendo.

    Mr. Mueller may not care. His report suggests the actual goal of the obstruction volume is impeachment: “We concluded that Congress has the authority to prohibit a President’s corrupt use of his authority.”

    Note as well what isn’t in the report. It makes only passing, bland references to the genesis of so many of the accusations Mr. Mueller probed: the infamous dossier produced by opposition-research firm Fusion GPS and paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign. How do you exonerate Mr. Page without delving into the scandalous Moscow deeds of which he was falsely accused? How do you narrate an entire section on the July 2016 Trump Tower meeting without noting that Ms. Veselnitskaya was working alongside Fusion? How do you detail every aspect of the Papadopoulos accusations while avoiding any detail of the curious and suspect ways that those accusations came back to the FBI via Australia’s Alexander Downer?

    The report instead mostly reads as a lengthy defense of the FBI—of its shaky claims about how its investigation began, of its far-fetched theories, of its procedures, even of its leadership. One of the more telling sections concerns Mr. Comey’s firing. Mr. Mueller’s team finds it generally beyond the realm of possibility that the FBI director was canned for incompetence or insubordination. It treats everything the FBI or Mr. Comey did as legitimate, even as it treats everything the president did as suspect.

    Mr. Mueller is an institutionalist, and many on his team were the same Justice Department attorneys who first fanned the partisan collusion claims. He was the wrong man to provide an honest assessment of the 2016 collusion dirty trick. And we’ve got a report to prove it.

    Write to kim@wsj.com.

    Appeared in the April 19, 2019, print edition.

  7. Prof. Turley posted his article at 12:30 yesterday. That gave him less than 2 hours to read the report, make an informed decision then write his article.

  8. https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2019/04/19/mueller_strzok_out_with_his_whitewash_report__140106.html

    It’s almost as though the Mueller Report was written by Democrats for Democrats. Oh, wait — that’s exactly what it is! Which is why the left-wing media was so drunkenly exuberant on Thursday when the report was released.

    The entire framework of the report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller was to buttress the Democratic argument that President Trump is an unqualified boob who doesn’t deserve to be president — and there is not even the slightest acknowledgement of the by-now blatantly obvious fact that Trump was the victim of a virtual coup.

    Indeed, you cannot help but get the feeling that the Mueller Report is the death benefit of that “insurance policy” that Peter Strzok, Lisa Page and Andy McCabe took out way back in August 2016……

    1. How ignorantly the Left are once again shouting Give us Barabbas! Not that President Trump is the Messiah, but that they still desire save the guilty and condemn the innocent. Bring it.

      1. Mueller declined to prosecute Donald Trump Jr. for the exact same reason Comey refused to make a criminal referral on Clinton–no “willfulness” or culpable state of mind. Here’s your excerpt from the Mueller report on that count, Chief:

        Most significantly, the government has not obtained admissible evidence that is likely to establish the scienter requirement beyond a reasonable doubt. To prove that a defendant acted “knowingly and willfully,” the government would have to show that the defendant had general knowledge that his conduct was unlawful.

        [end excerpt]

        BTW, isn’t it interesting that Mueller emphasizes that he did not obtain “admissible evidence” to show that Donald Trump Jr. knew that his conduct was unlawful. I wonder what sort of inadmissible evidence Mueller might have obtained to show that Donald Trump Jr. knew that his conduct was unlawful?

        1. “Mueller declined to prosecute Donald Trump Jr. for the exact same reason Comey refused to make a criminal referral on Clinton–no “willfulness” or culpable state of mind.”

          Of course Diane forgets the Mueller Report proves Donald Trump did nothing wrong. No such investigation was performed in the Clinton affair and but Diane believes that bleaching and hammering doesn’t prove intent. That is the thinking process of Daffy Diane.

          1. Of course Diane forgets the Mueller Report proves Donald Trump did nothing wrong. No such investigation was performed in the Clinton affair and but Diane believes that bleaching and hammering doesn’t prove intent.

            Allan,
            According to the Left, just because a 2.5 year investigation couldn’t find evidence to indict President Trump doesn’t mean he didn’t commit the crime. They have an entirely different approach to the idea of justice. They begin with guilty and theoretically work there way through the process towards not guilty beyond reasonable doubt. The problem of course is the mindset that has them remove the presumption of innocence in the first place. It’s like what I’ve seen from some prosecutors not wanting to give a hearing to someone that may have been wrongly convicted. Even when clear evidence is provided to demonstrate the individual could not have done the crime, the prosecutor still won’t admit the hearing should move forward.

            In President Trump’s case and in their mind, he’s guilty of something. They will never get to the point where they will see him as not guilty beyond reasonable doubt. Ever. Rules of evidence, not important. Even this Lefty your debating here believes if they have no admissible evidence, then surely there must be evidence, but it’s not admissible. So therefore clearly a crime was committed, the prosecutors just couldn’t legally prove it. She also believes it is the Justice Departments job to exonerate people. Mueller’s job was not to exonerate President Trump.

            The hypocrisy from these loons is breath-taking. If they could not see obstruction from Clinton and her entourage in that brief investigation, then wtf do they think obstruction is? This is why I say let them pull on this obstruction thread. They will be building the platform by which everyone involved in the Clinton email scandal will be hung.

            1. ” They have an entirely different approach to the idea of justice. ”

              Of course Olly. The left is fascist and some are even Stalinist. We differ from the fascists in that one is innocent until proven guilty something you mention but they cannot accept.

              1. L4D has no more arrest power than does FUBARAllan. You want to lock up Crooked H? Go for it. And see what happens when you are arrested for impersonating a sworn law enforcement officer.

                As my esteemed colleague keeps reminding us, “That’s how dumb it gets.”

                1. Diane, no one said you have more power to arrest than anyone else. You live outside of Stalin’s world but in your world you would have the power to arrest and convict without the presumption of the individual being innocent until proven guilty.

                  You are a very confused individual.

          2. No, Alan, you completely misread the situation. Mueller declined to prosecute because there are no mechanisms to indict a sitting president unless Congress is totally behind impeachment.

            1. Mueller wrote a two part book. It doesn’t include any proof of obstruction that would lead to any conviction much less any assumption of guilt. You can’t provide a cogent argument for obstruction. Isn’t that frustrating? We have to laugh at what you might think a good argument for obstruction is. According to you hammering and bleaching the hard drive by Hillary instead of turning it over to Congress wasn’t obstruction but an insulting tweet byTrump is.

              Peter, when will you stop with your silliness?

              1. Trump made every effort to obstruct the Mueller Probe. The only reason he failed is because various aides refused to carry out Trump’s orders.

                However lacking Bill Clinton may have been, he rarely made hostile statements regarding Ken Starr’s investigation. Whereas Trump was nakedly hostile from Day 1 and his tweets on Thursday read like those of a mafia don.

                1. “The only reason he failed is because various aides refused to carry out Trump’s orders.”

                  Peter, I don’t know that those orders if followed out constituted obstruction but the fact is they didn’t carry those orders out and neither did Trump so you can’t possibly think that constitutes obstruction. That is your Stalinist part that is inadvertantly sneaking out of your computer. You have enterred the world of thoughtcrimes.

                  “You can’t provide a cogent argument for obstruction. Isn’t that frustrating? We have to laugh at what you might think a good argument for obstruction is. According to you hammering and bleaching the hard drive by Hillary instead of turning it over to Congress wasn’t obstruction but an insulting tweet byTrump is.”

                  1. Bleach-Bit is a software program used by a technician at the Platte River company in Nebraska that stored Hillary’s emails on their routers. Hillary did not literally bleach her hard drive.

                    Hammering a cell-phone is common practice when one disposes of one’s old cell-phone in favor of a new cell-phone. Hillary did not hammer her hard drive. She hammered her cell-phones.

                    Your “factoids” are literally “garbles.” And you know it. And you don’t care about knowingly, willfully, incessantly repeating factitious garbles as though they were “true and proven facts.”

                    Congratulations! You remain the singlemost risible creature on Res Ipsa Loquitur. Even Crazy George and OKY1 are both ever so slightly less risible than FUBARAllan.

                    1. “Bleach-Bit is a software program …”

                      Actually Diane, I don’t even know if Hillary held the hammer. What I do believe is true is that she saw to it that her hard drive was in no conditiion to provide the information requested by Congress and by that account she should have been inducted and gone to trial. A jury could decide the rest.

                      You are so lost in minutia Diane, that you cannot follow the logic of an argument and you cannot follow the arguments that determine right from wrong. Maybe you have no principles and maybe you have no morals.

                      As far as whether or not hard drives were involved I believe she had an entire system where computers would have been involved and at that time computers had hard drives. Hard drives have evolved even where you haven’t.

        2. Deliberate intent to commit espionage is not a requirement to be prosecuted for the negligent handling of classified information. My father had clearance, and this fact was hammered home to them. There was a sign hanging in a SCIF that read, “Are you feeling lonely tonight? Do you want to talk with someone? Then forget to lock your safe.” Hillary Clinton broke multiple felony laws regarding classified information, as well as the Records Act.

          This is also why a sailer was charged for taking a selfing inside a nuclear sub. He was not a spy. He was prosecuted.

          On the other hand, it is impossible to collude with an enemy without your knowledge or intent. You could be a pawn. Manipulated, like Russia manipulated the FBI into undermining the President of the United States, and weakening our position geopolitically. His strength at the negotiating table with foreign nations has been steeply undercut by our own intelligence community, based on a document from Russian spies. Putin must go to bed chuckling every night.

          1. The only Clinton emails from the private email server during her tenure as Secretary of State that have ever been published by anybody were selected from the tens of thousands of emails that Hillary surrendered to the State Department who, in turn, produced them to Congress and the FBI.

            None of the “deleted” emails have ever been published by anyone. Not by Russia, not by China, not by Iran, not by North Korea, not by Peter Smith and not by a certain radical transparency organization that goes by the name of Wikileaks, either.

            Do you have any idea at all of just how much unnecessary trouble Trump could have spared himself had he not continued the febrile witch hunt for Hillary’s emails that the GOP started and still refuses to give up?

            This is your own doing. Own it.

            1. Do you know how much trouble Hillary could have spared herself by using a secure State Department server instead of a homebrew private server in her basement?
              Those rules and guidelines governing cyber-security were known by government employees far down the ladder and with far less experience, but a former, activist First Lady and U.S. Senator can’t be expected to know and abide by rules set up for the peons.

              1. But, but . . . that was the first necessary step in Hillary’s fiendishly diabolical plot to depose Trump with a Deep-State coup d’état. It had to be.

                  1. It was NEGLIGENCE on Hillary’s part and we have seen that such negligence in others has been punished with a jail term.

            2. “None of the “deleted” emails have ever been published by anyone. ”

              “MARCH 21, 2019
              (Washington, DC) — Judicial Watch today announced it received 756 pages of newly uncovered emails that were among the materials former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tried to delete or destroy, several of which were classified and were transmitted over her unsecure, non-“state.gov” email system.

              Hillary Clinton repeatedly stated that the 55,000 pages of documents she turned over to the State Department in December 2014 included all of her work-related emails. In response to a court order in another Judicial Watch case, she declared under penalty of perjury in 2015 that she had “directed that all my emails on clintonemail.com in my custody that were or are potentially federal records be provided to the Department of State, and on information and belief, this has been done.”

              In 2017, the FBI uncovered 72,000 pages of documents Clinton attempted to delete or did not otherwise disclose. Until the court intervened and established a new deadline, the State Department had been slow-walking the release of those documents at a rate that would have required Judicial Watch and the American people to wait until at least 2020 to see all the releasable Clinton material. The production of documents in this case is now concluded with the FBI being only able to recover or find approximately 5,000 of the 33,000 government emails Hillary Clinton took and tried to destroy.

              Judicial Watch obtained the documents in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed on May 6, 2015, after the State Department failed to respond to a March 4, 2015, FOIA request (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:15-cv-00687)) seeking:

              All emails sent and received by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in her official capacity as Secretary of State, as well as all emails by other State Department employees to Secretary Clinton regarding her non-“state.gov” email address.

              This final batch of Clinton emails includes five new classified emails and communications with controversial figures Lanny Davis and Sidney Blumenthal.”

              Continued: https://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/press-releases/judicial-watch-uncovers-more-classified-emails-in-hillary-clintons-unsecure-email-system/

    2. Powerful government agencies have become weaponized against conservatives.

      Republicans in Congress seem at odds with each other on acknowledging this basic fact, and coming to the defense of the victims. In an effort to look fair, they are enabling the abuse of government authority.

      The entire process, from the Dossier to the investigation, was an attempt at a soft coup, or at the very least, to mislead voters in order to affect the next election.

      We know the investigation was fraudulent because, while it purported to look into Russian interference in our election, it did not investigate the one person we know paid Russian spies for spurious opposition research in order to defraud voters. It did not look into FBI cooperation with that plan, and by extension, its cooperation with Russia to destabilize our country.

      It is time to have a non biased investigation of the players in this coup, if it is even possible to find someone willing to just work the job, and not inject personal politics into their authority.

  9. pssst…..Dont tell the Dems but they are doing Trump a favor.
    Bwahahahahahaha

    ______

    Noam Chomsky Calls Dem Focus on Russia a ‘Huge Gift’ to Trump: ‘They May Have Handed Him the Next Election’

    Noam Chomsky, the noted progressive scholar, believes Democrats have focused far too much on Russia. And he thinks it might earn them four more years of President Donald Trump.

    Speaking at a forum in Boston with Amy Goodman, Chomsky stated his view that he always believed there was going to be little to no proof of collusion in the Mueller Report.

    “[T]he Democrats are helping him,” Chomsky said. “They are. Take the focus on Russia-gate. What’s that all about? I mean, it was pretty obvious at the beginning that you’re not going to find anything very serious about Russian interference in elections.”

    He added, “As far as Trump collusion with the Russians, that was never going to amount to anything more than minor corruption, maybe building a Trump hotel in Red Square or something like that, but nothing of any significance.”

    Chomsky went on to say that he believes focusing too heavily on Russia may cost Democrats dearly next November.

    “The Democrats invested everything in this issue,” Chomsky said. “Well, turned out there was nothing much there. They gave Trump a huge gift. In fact, they may have handed him the next election. … That’s a matter of being so unwilling to deal with fundamental issues, that they’re looking for something on the side that will somehow give political success.”

    Watch above, via Democracy Now. The relevant portion begins at 48:20.

    https://www.mediaite.com/trump/noam-chomsky-calls-dem-focus-on-russia-a-huge-gift-to-trump-they-may-have-handed-him-the-next-election/

    1. In the final analysis, Noam Chomsky defines the Democrats and all of the TDS anarchists. They have nothing to offer Americans in the public forum

      That’s a matter of being so unwilling to deal with fundamental issues, that they’re looking for something on the side that will somehow give political success.
      – Noam Chomsky

    2. I noticed that Pocahontas recently jumped on the impeachment bandwagon.
      Pelosi and Schumer are in the “not so fast” group, but at the same time seek to mollify those clamoring for impeachment.
      Absent any real bombshell revelations involving Trump, that’s going to a difficult balancing act for the Democratic leadership in the House and the Senate.
      With Pocahontas now on the impeachment warpath with people like Mad Max and Rapida “we’re gonna impeach the f****” Tlaib, that an additional complication for Chuck and Nancy.

      1. The title of the Katyal video is wrong:

        Katyal actually said, “It’s the end of the beginning.”

        Thanks to TIA squared for bringing it to my attention.

    1. Actually, the title of the vid is wrong. Katyal didn’t say that “It’s the beginning of the end.” He said, “It’s the end of the beginning.” (I missed the error in the title when I copied it. Thanks to “TIA squared” for bringing it to my attention.)

      It may take years, but this clearly isn’t over. Trump may be reelected, but the years fly by — and who knows…

  10. “The Party’s Over”
    – Willie Nelson

    Turn out the lights
    The party’s over
    They say that all
    Good things must end
    Call it a night
    The party’s over
    And tomorrow starts
    The same old thing again

    What a crazy crazy party
    Never seen so many people
    Laughing dancing
    Look at you, you’re having fun
    But look at me
    I’m almost cryin’
    But that don’t keep her love from dyin’
    Misery ’cause for me the party’s over
    Turn out the lights
    The party’s over
    They say that all
    Good things must end
    Call it a night
    The party’s over
    And tomorrow starts
    The same old thing again

    Once I had a love undyin’
    I didn’t keep it wouldn’t try it
    Life for me was just one party
    And then another
    I broke her heart so many times
    I had to have my parting wife
    Then one day she said
    Sweetheart the party’s over
    Turn out the lights
    The party’s over
    They say that all
    Good things must end
    Call it a night
    The party’s over
    And tomorrow starts
    The same old thing again
    And tomorrow starts the same old thing again

  11. Barr touched on the fundamental issue of corrupt intent which is required for obstruction of justice. Barr/Rosenstein concluded on the basis of his actions that Trump did not display such intent. Here is Barr’s statement on the subject:

    “President Trump faced an unprecedented situation. As he entered into office, and sought to perform his responsibilities as President, federal agents and prosecutors were scrutinizing his conduct before and after taking office, and the conduct of some of his associates. At the same time, there was relentless speculation in the news media about the President’s personal culpability. Yet, as he said from the beginning, there was in fact no collusion. And as the Special Counsel’s report acknowledges, there is substantial evidence to show that the President was frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that the investigation was undermining his presidency, propelled by his political opponents, and fueled by illegal leaks. Nonetheless, the White House fully cooperated with the Special Counsel’s investigation, providing unfettered access to campaign and White House documents, directing senior aides to testify freely, and asserting no privilege claims. And at the same time, the President took no act that in fact deprived the Special Counsel of the documents and witnesses necessary to complete his investigation. Apart from whether the acts were obstructive, this evidence of non-corrupt motives weighs heavily against any allegation that the President had a corrupt intent to obstruct the investigation.”

  12. MUELLER REPORT DOCUMENTS

    EFFORTS BY RUSSIAN MILITARY INTELLIGENCE

    It has been known for some time that a company that supplies many Florida counties with voter registration systems was the target of a spear-phishing campaign by the Russians in 2016. The hackers then used the information gleaned from the company’s network to send malicious emails to more than 120 of its customers in Florida.

    The company — identified elsewhere as VR Systems, based in Tallahassee — has said that it warned customers shortly before the 2016 elections to be on the lookout for the fake emails and not to open any attachments.

    Despite NSA Claim, Elections Vendor Denies System Was Compromised In Hack Attempt
    The Mueller report said that a document attached to the e-mails was “coded with malicious software (commonly referred to as a Trojan) that permitted the GRU to access the infected computer.” VR Systems told NPR in 2017 that to the best of its knowledge, none of its customers had opened the malicious emails.

    The special counsel’s report also said that Russian intelligence had installed malware on the vendor’s network, something VR Systems denies.

    In fact, VR Systems is one of more than two dozen election companies that serve on a new government coordinating council working with DHS and the FBI on cybersecurity. The council was created in response to Russia’s efforts in 2016 to interfere with the election.

    Russian Cyberattack Targeted Elections Vendor Tied To Voting Day Disruptions
    VR Systems also was the supplier of electronic poll books that malfunctioned on Election Day in Durham County, N.C., in 2016. The state believes user error by election and poll workers was responsible but says it has not definitively determined the cause.

    The state’s Board of Elections said in a statement issued Thursday that it had contacted VR Systems to verify that it is the vendor referred to in the Mueller report (the company name is redacted) and to seek assurances that its poll books, which are still used in some North Carolina counties, are secure.

    The Mueller report notes another successful breach in the summer of 2016, involving Illinois’ voter registration system.

    According to the report, Russian hackers successfully exploited a vulnerability in the state’s Board of Elections website, giving them access to the records of millions of Illinois voters. The hackers were able to get personal information from 500,000 voters before the state detected and stopped the breach.

    The report also noted that Russian military intelligence officers scanned multiple state and local election websites looking for vulnerabilities, including more than two dozen during a two-day period in July 2016.

    “Mueller Report Raises New Questions About Russia’s Hacking Targets in 2016”

    NPR, 4/19/19

  13. BARR’S PORTRAYAL OF PROBE TOTALLY DECEPTIVE

    The events since Barr’s letter have incinerated whatever remains of his credibility. The famously tight-lipped Mueller team told several news outlets the letter had minimized Trump’s culpability; Barr gave congressional testimony hyping up Trump’s charges of “spying,” even prejudging the outcome of an investigation (“I think there was a failure among a group of leaders [at the FBI] at the upper echelon”); evaded questions as to whether he had shared the Mueller report with the White House; and, it turns out, he’s “had numerous conversations with White House lawyers which aided the president’s legal team,” the New York Times reports. Then he broke precedent by scheduling a press conference to spin the report in advance of its redacted publication.

    It is not much of a mystery to determine which officials have offered their full loyalty to the president. Trump has reportedly “praised Barr privately for his handling of the report and compared him favorably to former Attorney General Jeff Sessions” —whose sole offense in Trump’s eyes was following Department of Justice ethical protocol. Trump urged his Twitter followers to tune in to Barr’s conference, promotional treatment he normally reserves for his Fox News sycophants.

    The press conference was the final disqualifying performance. Barr acted like Trump’s defense lawyer, the job he had initially sought, rather than as an attorney general. His aggressive spin seemed designed to work in the maximal number of repetitions of the “no collusion” mantra, in accordance with his boss’s talking points, at the expense of any faithful transmission of the special counsel’s report.

    Barr’s letter had made it sound as though Trump’s campaign spurned Russia’s offers of help: “The Special Counsel did not find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in these efforts, despite multiple offers from Russian-affiliated individuals to assist the Trump campaign,” he wrote. In fact, Mueller’s report concluded, “In some instances, the Campaign was receptive to the offer,” but that the cooperation fell short of criminal conduct.

    Where Mueller intended to leave the job of judging Trump’s obstructive conduct to Congress, Barr interposed his own judgment. Barr offered this incredible statement for why Trump’s behavior was excusable: “[T]here is substantial evidence to show that the President was frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that the investigation was undermining his presidency, propelled by his political opponents, and fueled by illegal leaks,” Barr said. “Nonetheless, the White House fully cooperated with the Special Counsel’s investigation,” and credited him further with taking “no act that in fact deprived the Special Counsel of the documents and witnesses necessary to complete his investigation.”

    Sincere? How can Barr use that word to describe the mentality of a man whose own staffers routinely describe him in the media as a pathological liar? Trump repeatedly lied about Russia’s involvement in the campaign, and his own dealings with Russia. And he also, contra Barr, repeatedly denied the special counsel access to witnesses by dangling pardons to persuade them to withhold cooperation.

    Edited from: “Congress Should Impeach William Barr”

    NEW YORK MAGAZINE, 4/19/19

    1. the letter had minimized Trump’s culpability;

      Not hard to do. There was no crime on his part.

    2. Hey Peter Shill, given your breathless and unwavering faith in posting Hail Mary comments on these forums, what follows are revelations that are totally believable and unassailable, with credible sources and timeless messages.

      We are encouraged with your credo. Now take the next step!

      Jesus on the Cross, prototype of the despised

      After the proclamation of the Passion, Father Raniero Cantalamessa, the Preacher to the Pontifical Household delivered the homily, taking as his starting point the passage “He was despised and rejected by men”. This “mysterious man of sorrow” found in the prophecy from Isaiah is given “a name and a face” in the Passion: “the name and face of Jesus of Nazarath”. “Today”, said Fr Cantalamessa, “we want to contemplate the Crucified One specifically in his capacity as the prototype and representative of all the rejected, the disinherited, and the ‘discarded’ of the earth, those from whom we turn aside our faces so as not to see them”.
      Fr Cantalamessa said that, “On the Cross, Jesus of Nazareth becomes the symbol” of that “part of humanity that is ‘humiliated and insulted’.” This is not the most important meaning of the Cross, he said; the most important meaning is “spiritual and mystical”, “that death redeemed the world from sin”. However, the meaning that can be found in Jesus as representative of the lowly and despised “is the one that all people, believers and non-believers, can recognize and receive”.

      Easter is your feast

      Christ’s death on the Cross is not the end of the Gospel story. “It says something else”, Fr Cantalamessa explained; “It says that the Crucified One is risen”. The feast of Easter, he said, “is the feast of the reversal [of roles] directed by God and accomplished in Christ”. So, he said, we can say “to the poor and the outcast… Easter is your feast”.
      Father Cantalamessa also spoke in his homily to the rich of the world, those on “the other side of the equation”, reminding them that they too, like all men and women, will one day face death.

      https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2019-04/pope-francis-celebrates-the-solemn-liturgy-of-the-lord-s-passion.html

      1. Estovir, how typical of you. Just irrelevant, extraneous crap having nothing to do with anything. ..And I’m supposed to be the shill..??? What a joke!!

        1. “Estovir, how typical of you.”

          Excellent Estovir. Peter Shill and is looking for relevance. He feels disconnected, perhaps disconnected from all of humanity which is expected when anyone has such a leftist outlook. You are providing him with relevance.

          1. “Man wishes to be happy even when he so lives as to make happiness impossible” – St. Augustine

            Reading the many copy/paste tripe from TDS trolls, conveys a very clear and loud message: they are truly unhappy souls. The Dems have morphed, since the loss of Hillary, more so, into a group of savage, wrathful, gluttonous mongrels intent on destroying. A house divided applies.

            If you want to win converts you have to give them a reason, you have to give them hope.
            Nothing quicker destroys an organization or movement than a collection of miserable, unhappy people.

            Good Friday service this evening was wonderful

            There is a resurrection!

            1. “There is a resurrection!”

              In the past Peter Shill has tried to resurrect his integrity. He has failed time and time again so we leave it to you Estovir to aid his soul and help him ressurect his integrity and permit him to be a man.

              1. From Merriam-Webster:

                How Shakespeare Used Sanctimonious

                There’s nothing sacred about “sanctimonious”-at least not any more. But in the early 1600s, the English adjective was still sometimes used to describe someone truly holy or pious (a sense that recalls the meaning of the word’s Latin parent, sanctimonia). Shakespeare used both the “holy” and “holier-than-thou” senses in his work, referring in The Tempest to the “sanctimonious” (that is, “holy”) ceremonies of marriage, and in Measure for Measure to describe “the sanctimonious pirate that went to sea with the Ten Commandments but scraped one out of the table.” (Apparently, the pirate found the restriction on stealing a bit too inconvenient.)

                1. L4D, it has come to our attention that some kind soul on these forums has established a program to rescue you from your internet addiction and impulsive behaviors therein. It is called the L4D Project. We suggest you matriculate (David Brock can pay for your tuition via George Soros) since your comrade in arms, Peter Shill, is too young, too immature and evolutionarily challenged (missing genes) to help you. I will work on him.

                  If you start now in this noble pursuit of becoming sober and clean, you may very well acquire some of the successful qualities that Noah Webster exhibited.

                  Remember we are here to help.
                  Queen Gertrude sends you her best

                  “The lady doth protest too much, methinks”
                  Queen Gertrude in Hamlet

                  Noah Webster

                  In 1806, Webster published his first dictionary, A Compendious Dictionary of the English Language. In 1807 Webster started two decades of intensive work to expand his publication into a fully comprehensive dictionary, An American Dictionary of the English Language. To help him trace the etymology of words, Webster learned 26 languages. Webster hoped to standardize American speech, since Americans in different parts of the country used somewhat different vocabularies and spelled, pronounced, and used words differently.

                  https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merriam-Webster

                2. It appears that Diane wanted to use the word sanctimonious so she looked it up in Merriam Webster where she found her quote on “How Shakespeare Used Sanctimonious”. That has little to do with Peter’s search to ressurect his integrity.

                  Reading further it discussed Obama’s use of the word where he hit the nail on the head.

                  Why:
                  President Obama used the word to describe fellow Democrats who objected to his compromise on extending tax cuts for wealthy Americans.

                  The president stated that a purist position would only allow Democrats to “feel good about ourselves and sanctimonious about how pure our intentions are.”

    3. “The press conference was the final disqualifying performance. Barr acted like Trump’s defense lawyer, the job he had initially sought, rather than as an attorney general. His aggressive spin seemed designed to work in the maximal number of repetitions of the “no collusion” mantra, in accordance with his boss’s talking points…”

      THIS is the new Democrat/media SPIN —> “Barr acted like Trump’s defense lawyer…” No, Barr acted like Attorney General.

      And THIS spin —-> “the “no collusion” mantra” —–> which is being said BECAUSE there was NO COLLUSION, you media morons….

  14. TRUMP FORCED AIDES TO DOCUMENT CONVERSATIONS

    The report found that the President of the United States was less credible than the F.B.I. director he fired, when their accounts of their interactions conflicted. It found that he was less credible than his own White House counsel, when their accounts conflicted. When reports first surfaced about the now infamous Trump Tower meeting in June, 2016, Trump was not only involved in trying to cover up what happened; he directed the coverup.

    The President himself comes across as a mobster, often lamenting that his lawyers are not as good at representing him as was his early mentor Roy Cohn, an actual mob lawyer. It comes as no surprise that Trump lies about so many things, big and small, though it is still remarkable that he does so even in the midst of a high-stakes legal investigation. Concerning a dinner with the soon-to-be-fired F.B.I. director, James Comey, at which Trump asked for “loyalty,” the report said, Trump later lied even about the fact that he had invited Comey to dinner, claiming falsely, in public, that he thought the F.B.I. director had requested the meeting. The report goes to great lengths to disprove this one small example, among many, of Trump’s falsehoods, presenting evidence that includes “The President’s Daily Diary,” which records that Trump “extend[ed] a dinner invitation” to Comey on January 27,” and sworn testimony from Priebus.

    Everyone in the White House, it seems, was writing down memos for the files. Trump was forcing his subordinates into awkward conversations that made them run for their lawyers. A phone call to the director of the National Security Agency, in which Trump complained about Comey and the investigation, was so bizarre that the N.S.A. chief immediately wrote a record of the conversation and put it in a safe. Trump lied to his staff. He yelled at them. He hid things from them. He not only lied to the press but actively enlisted others to do so, too. When he was secretly preparing to fire Comey, he confided the fact to Stephen Miller, the young loyalist who is supposed to be advising him on immigration policy, and ordered him not to tell the rest of the White House staff. (Even Miller apparently thought this was sneaky and wrong; he called Priebus that night to give him a heads-up that Trump was about to do something big with the “Comey situation.”) The lying was so endemic that even when Sarah Sanders was caught cold by the special counsel’s office, she blithely dismissed her blatant falsehoods. She told the special counsel that it was a mere “slip of the tongue” to claim, based on no evidence, that “countless members of the F.B.I.” wanted Jim Comey fired because the F.B.I. director had lost the confidence of the agency. This, Sanders said, was merely rhetoric, spoken “in the heat of the moment.” Remember all those times that Sanders and the President’s many defenders on Capitol Hill said that he was never even considering firing Mueller? Yeah, that wasn’t true either.

    Edited from: “Mueller Report Won’t End Trump’s Presidency. But It Sure Makes Him Look Bad”

    THE NEW YORKER 4/19/19

    1. The Mueller Report proved no conspiracy and no obstruction. Trump wins again and instead of dealing with America the left can’t stop making things up or dwelling on trivial matters frequently taken out of context. That will insure a Trump victory in 2020 and perhaps a House and Senate to go with it.

      GO TRUMP

      1. No, it won’t ensure anything. The left won’t stop. The wolf is always at the door. Vote like your freedoms and liberty depend on it.

        1. As of November 2018 (and including the 2020 special election in Arizona), Republicans are expected to defend 22 seats in 2020, while the Democratic Party is expected to defend only 12 seats.

        2. Laurie, of course we need to vote but right now is a time for some optimism. Part One of the Mueller Report clears Trump entirely and opens the doors to to explore any criminal activity committed by the left. Part Two is a meaningless document written to distract from how the left and the media have let the country go down the drain while they throw their temper tantrums distrating the nation from solving its problems. We don’t need to act like the left, continuously angry and nihilistic.

  15. TRUMP CALLED RUSSIAN INTERFERENCE “FAKE NEWS”

    WHILE FAKE NEWS WAS GENERATED BY WHITE HOUSE

    Mueller had zeroed in on a White House briefing on May 10, 2017, when a reporter responded to Sanders’s claim that FBI agents had lost confidence in Comey by telling her that in fact a “vast majority” of the agency still supported him. Sanders replied, “Look, we’ve heard from countless members of the FBI that say very different things.”

    Mueller found that wasn’t true and said Sanders told investigators the claim was a “slip of the tongue.” As The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple noted, though, the next day she repeated the same claim and affirmed that at least 50 FBI employees had contacted her. Not so, Mueller again said. That comment was made “in the heat of the moment,” Sanders told Mueller’s team, which concluded that it “was not founded on anything.”

    When CNN’s Anderson Cooper pushed White House Spokesman Hogan Gidley on the point, Gidley at first demurred, saying that “she (Sanders) can well defend herself. I’m not here to defend Sarah Sanders.”

    “Is Sarah going to acknowledge that she lied to the American people?” Cooper asked.

    “Sarah’s going to defend herself tonight on another network,” Gidley said. (“Right. Of course she will,” Cooper replied dryly.)

    That network, naturally, was Fox News. And the confines of “Hannity” could hardly have been friendlier.

    The host started by offering that he too had heard from a vast array of FBI agents happy that Comey had been axed.

    “The media is attacking you today,” Hannity said, before offering that “every FBI rank-and-file guy, the 99.9 percent I know, have all thanked me . . . they were hurt by a few at the top and they’re angry about that. And you said that, but explain.”

    Sanders offered a brief mea culpa, but then insisted that the only falsehood she had uttered was the word “countless.”

    “Look, I acknowledge that I had a slip of the tongue when I used the word ‘countless,’” she told Hannity. “But it’s not untrue and certainly you just echoed exactly the sentiment and the point that I was making, that a number of current and former FBI agents agreed with the president.”

    But what of Mueller’s conclusion that her entire claim was “not founded on anything?”

    Edited from: “Your Boss Lied: Sanders, Gidley Faces Vastly Different Mueller Questions On CNN And Fox”

    THE WASHINGTON POST, 4/19/19

      1. I see a little silhouetto of a man
        Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you do the Fandango?
        Thunderbolt and lightning, very, very frightning me
        (Galileo) Galileo, (Galileo) Galileo, Galileo Figaro magnifico

        But I’m just a poor boy, nobody loves me
        He’s just a poor boy from a poor family
        Spare him his life from this monstrosity
        Easy come, easy go, will you let me go?
        Bismillah! No, we will not let you go
        (Let him go!) Bismillah! We will not let you go
        (Let him go!) Bismillah! We will not let you go
        (Let me go) Will not let you go
        (Let me go) Will not let you go
        (Let me go) Ah
        No, no, no, no, no, no, no
        (Oh, mamma mia, mamma mia) Mamma mia, let me go
        Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me, for me, for me!

        1. Any day now L4D will begin Shouting and throwing the troll into convulsions

          I believe!

          ——

          http://www.usccb.org/bible/mark/9

          17. “Teacher, I have brought to you my son possessed by a mute spirit.
          18. Wherever it seizes him, it throws him down; he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive it out, but they were unable to do so.”
          19
          He said to them in reply, “O faithless generation, how long will I be with you? How long will I endure you? Bring him to me.”
          20
          They brought the boy to him. And when he saw him, the spirit immediately threw the boy into convulsions. As he fell to the ground, he began to roll around and foam at the mouth.
          21
          Then he questioned his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” He replied, “Since childhood.
          22
          It has often thrown him into fire and into water to kill him. But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”
          23
          Jesus said to him, “‘If you can!’ Everything is possible to one who has faith.”
          24
          Then the boy’s father cried out, “I do believe, help my unbelief!”
          25
          Jesus, on seeing a crowd rapidly gathering, rebuked the unclean spirit and said to it, “Mute and deaf spirit, I command you: come out of him and never enter him again!”
          26
          Shouting and throwing the boy into convulsions, it came out. He became like a corpse, which caused many to say, “He is dead!”
          27
          But Jesus took him by the hand, raised him, and he stood up.
          28
          When he entered the house, his disciples asked him in private, “Why could we not drive it out?”
          29
          He said to them, “This kind can only come out through prayer.”

            1. “William Barr Misled Everyone About the Mueller Report – The Intercept”

              Yes, the NYTimes was mislead because they wrote cr-p for 2 years and still can’t grasp the President did nothing wrong. Risen used to write for the NYTimes so he is doubly offended.

          1. Excerpted from the article linked above:

            In fact, the Mueller report’s findings on contacts between the Trump circle and Russia are extensive and damning. The report does not exonerate Trump or his campaign; instead, Mueller says he didn’t have enough evidence to bring criminal charges for conspiring with the Russians. The report states that “while the investigation identified numerous links between individuals with ties to the Russian government and individuals associated with the Trump Campaign, the evidence was not sufficient to support criminal charges. Among other things, the evidence was not sufficient to charge any Campaign official as an unregistered agent of the Russian government or other Russian principal.”

            “Further,” the report adds, “the evidence was not sufficient to charge that any member of the Trump Campaign conspired with representatives of the Russian government to interfere in the 2016 election.” But went on to say that the “investigation established that several individuals affiliated with the Trump Campaign lied to [Mueller’s team] and to Congress, about their interactions with Russian-affiliated individuals and related matters. Those lies materially impaired the investigation of Russian election interference.”

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