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After two years investigating President Donald Trump’s alleged ‘collusion’ with Russia during the 2016 elections, Special Counsel Robert Mueller has at last delivered his final report to Attorney General William Barr for review.
The Attorney General has yet to communicate the findings to the US Congress and decide how much detail would be made public. The White House has not yet received or been briefed on the findings, but the administration is “looking forward to the process taking its course.”
The Democrats, who have spent years pushing the Russiagate narrative, have urged the AG not to share the report’s conclusions with the White House yet, claiming that, otherwise, the administration would try to interfere in which parts of the report are made public. The Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer, a senior Democratic Senator from New York, say it is imperative that the report is released in “full.”
Trump, confident that the entire affair was a mere ‘witch-hunt’, had earlier indicated he would not mind if the report were made public, so it is unclear why the Democrats would assume the White House wants to interfere. Donald Trump’s legal team said the president was “pleased” that Mueller has finally delivered on his probe, noting that the Attorney General “will determine the appropriate next steps.”
“I remain committed to as much transparency as possible, and I will keep you informed as to the status of my review,” Barr wrote, in a letter to the leaders of the House and Senate Judiciary committees. The Attorney General also noted that he may advise on the findings of the report as early as this weekend.
The key question Mueller was trying to answer was whether the Trump campaign had colluded with Russia’s alleged attempt to sway the results of the US presidential elections back in 2016. Since his appointment as special counsel to head the investigation back in May 2017, the former FBI chief has managed to indict six former presidential advisers, 26 Russian nationals and three Russian companies – yet none of the charges proved any ‘collusion’ between Trump and Moscow.
Although a handful of key Trump associates, including former campaign manager Paul Manafort and Republican operative Roger Stone, have been charged and have even pleaded guilty to procedural crimes, nobody has been charged with any offenses relating to collusion.
The report might prove a further disappointment to many as, according to a senior Justice Department official, Mueller is not recommending any additional indictments. Apparently not holding his breath for any smoking guns in the report, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, has promised to subpoena Mueller himself, unless the Congress is provided with “underlying evidence” to sift through.
Moscow has repeatedly rejected the allegations as absurd, emphasizing that, in contrast to what Washington might consider a modus operandi, it is not Russia’s state policy to interfere with other nations’ domestic affairs, and also noting that it was ridiculous and humiliating for a democratic superpower to complain that its elections were somehow influenced from outside.