Dispatch March 24, 2019

Barr’s Letter Shows Why We Need To See the Full Mueller Report Now

Attorney General William Barr’s letter summarizing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report only underscores how urgent it is that the full report be made available to the public. The letter fails to answer any of the many outstanding questions already made public, including:

  • What did Michael Flynn tell Mueller in his more than 62 hours of proffer sessions with the special counsel?
  • Where does Trump Tower Moscow, which Mueller’s team deemed “material to the investigations of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election,” fit into the counter-intelligence aspect of the investigation?
  • What did George Nader, the lobbyist believed to have been present at both the Seychelles meeting and a meeting in Trump Tower between Jared Kushner, Steve Bannon, and Mohamed bin Zayed, cooperate with the special counsel about (as reported by the New York Times)?
  • Did Mueller investigate Trump’s finances, thereby completing a full counterintelligence investigation? Or was his probe solely devoted to potential criminal wrongdoing during and after the campaign?
  • Why did Paul Manafort share polling data with Konstantin Kilimnik, and what did Kilimnik do with it?
  • What is the subject of the mysterious Supreme Court case involving a state-run company that Mueller and his team deemed so sensitive that they closed off an entire floor (per CNN) of the D.C. courthouse during proceedings?
  • What did Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, and Jared Kushner discuss in the June 9, 2016, meeting at Trump Tower, which they took with the explicit intent of receiving dirt on Hillary Clinton as “part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump”?
  • Why did Jared Kushner attempt to circumvent U.S. intelligence and establish a secret backchannel between the U.S. and Russian governments during the transition?
  • Who was the congressional candidate who reached out to Guccifer 2.0 to receive stolen emails from the DNC and other Democratic organizations in Mueller’s indictments of Russian intelligence hackers?
  • Who was the “senior Trump campaign official” who directed Roger Stone to reach out to WikiLeaks in July 2016—and who directed the campaign official to do so?
  • Why was Jerome Corsi not charged with a crime after being offered a draft of a plea agreement, which he released?
  • And, as always: If there was no coordination, why did Trump and his team spend years lying about their relationship and contacts with Russia?

Barr, who owes his job solely to Trump’s desire to end the Mueller investigation, is anything but a reliable source on this.

  • Trump’s only disagreement with Barr’s predecessor Jeff Sessions was that Sessions had recused himself from overseeing the Russia investigation, which led Trump to attack him repeatedly on Twitter and eventually force him out the day after the 2018 midterms.
  • Before becoming attorney general, Barr wrote a memo to the Trump administration attacking the Mueller investigation and called for investigations into Trump’s political opponents, which reportedly led the administration to consider bringing him on as a member of Trump’s defense team.
  • Barr also has a history of ending independent investigations to cover up his bosses’ scandals: In 1992, he authorized the pardons President George H.W. Bush used to end independent prosecutor Lawrence Walsh’s investigation into Iran-Contra.
  • To top it all off, Barr repeatedly left the door open to refusing to publish Mueller’s findings, laying the groundwork for the administration to continue to hide the truth from the public.

Regardless of Barr’s spin, Mueller’s investigation has already revealed major wrongdoing by the president and his inner circle.

  • Members of the president’s inner circle, including his campaign chairman, deputy campaign chairman, national security adviser, and personal lawyer, pleaded guilty to crimes stemming from the Russia investigation. One of his long-term advisers has also been indicted and has pleaded not guilty pending a trial.
  • The indictments and guilty pleas show a years-long effort to cover up the truth about the Trump campaign’s relationship with Russia, including efforts to share polling data with a Russian spy, establish a backchannel with WikiLeaks to get advance information about the Kremlin’s hacking efforts, and secretly coordinate with a Russian official to ensure Russia’s attack on our democracy went unpunished.
  • Mueller also provided detailed information about the Russian government’s ongoing efforts to undermine American democracy, ending any question as to who was behind interference in the 2016 election.
  • Mueller uncovered evidence that the president is compromised, not only by the financial relationship he was pursuing with the Russian government well into the 2016 campaign but also by the mountain of lies he and his White House have told to conceal the truth from the public.

 It’s time for the public to know the truth—not just Barr’s cherry-picked version, but the whole truth. Congress must act now to ensure that Mueller’s report is released to the public as soon as possible so we can better understand his conclusions.  The American public deserves to know exactly how the president and his subordinates acted in the face of a confirmed, sustained effort by the Kremlin to interfere in our elections, and whether the President’s financial entanglements with Russia have compromised our national security.