Attorney General Bill Barr has said that the Mueller report will be ready to greet its eager public by mid-April. That’s only a week or so away. So why are Democrats embarrassing themselves by calling nonstop for its immediate and total release, even when they know perfectly well that it contains material –- classified records, grand jury proceedings, etc.--- that would be illegal for Barr to make public. Barr has made it plain that he wants to be transparent and will turn over as much as he can, even though he’s not obligated to turn over anything at all. Trump is saying the same.
So why is House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler acting like he’s got a wasp in his underwear? (Apologies to the late Morey Amsterdam.)
There’s a clip of Nadler from a couple of decades ago that’s been making the rounds: Nadler argues that Independent Counsel Ken Starr’s report on President Clinton should NOT be released. It’s quite hilarious, considering that this time, Nadler wants every last unredacted word of the report on President Trump, even all the supporting documents (which I understand run into the millions of pages). At this writing, he’s readying the subpoena (which the DOJ will refuse, simply because complying with it would be breaking the law). Nadler’s hypocrisy is even worse when you consider that today’s special counsel statute is different from the independent counsel law that governed Ken Starr. Barr is not compelled to give the entire report (or for that matter, any of it) to Congress; Starr was supposed to.
In fact, Barr is behaving exactly as the Democrats would want him to if it were a Democrat President under investigation. Fair, ethical, deliberate, transparent, lawful. But this is Trump, so as far as the Dems are concerned, all that is out the window, ‘cause fairness ain’t got nuthin’ to do with it. In the spirit of Festivus, they want an “airing of grievances” against Trump. Ironically, they want Barr to treat Trump the same way that then-FBI Director James Comey treated Hillary in his infamous July 2016 press conference: Detail a list of accusations even though there’s no indictment.
Alan Dershowitz continues to point out what was wrong with treating Hillary that way. He’s right: Comey wasn’t supposed to make public any allegations that weren’t going to be charged. What Dershowitz keeps ignoring, though, is that the most egregious part of Comey’s press conference wasn’t the “airing of grievances” part –- it was the “declining to charge” part. Hillary clearly had broken the law and just as clearly should have been charged with crimes. It would have been quite appropriate for Comey to detail Hillary’s crimes as he did if he had also done the right thing and indicted her.
Dershowitz, who supported Hillary for President, likes to call her misdeeds “political sins” that didn’t call for indictment. Admittedly, I’m not a lawyer, and Dershowitz is an esteemed one, but I have to disagree with him on that one point. There’s plenty of evidence that Hillary broke the law, and quite spectacularly. To save her from indictment, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch had to essentially rewrite the Espionage Act –- to require “intent,” which is almost impossible to prove.
In fact, it’s hard to compare these two cases because of that key difference: Hillary broke the law and Trump didn’t. Hillary should have been indicted. Thus it’s hard to have much sympathy for Hillary over Comey’s public recitation of her misdeeds; Comey’s worst mistake was in not following through.
As for the issue of obstruction, Dershowitz reminded viewers in a Thursday night interview with Sean Hannity that the President is entitled to express his opinion publicly on any issue. To do so is NOT obstruction. “I’ve never heard of a case where somebody was charged with obstruction of justice for speaking in public, or tweeting,” he said. “And if you’re the President, you can fire, and you can’t be charged if you engage in your constitutionally protected acts.”
While waiting for Barr to release the report, someone, apparently from Mueller’s team, is strategically leaking, first to The New York Times and then to just about everybody else, to further the narrative that the report is much harder on Trump than Barr had made it seem in his summary. And, of course, the media are salivating over this news, and happy smiles have returned to their faces. On the other hand, John Solomon at THE HILL has sources of his own, at the DOJ, and according to them, the Mueller team wrote their report in “snippets” designed for public dissemination, pieces that read like more like campaign material than a prosecutor’s final report. Also, these do include grand jury information. This certainly is not the sort of material that’s supposed to be released to the public.
In the meantime, if you’d like to read about some ACTUAL obstruction, here’s some great reading material. Sara Carter has learned still more about how the Hillary email “investigation” was conducted. She’s reviewed some yet-unreleased congressional testimony from James Rybiki, who was chief of staff to James Comey, dealing with how the DOJ tried to limit the FBI’s ability to gain access to the laptops of Hillary confidants Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson.
Mills and Samuelson were granted immunity in June of 2016, about a month before the FBI closed their “investigation” into Hillary. In exchange for the immunity, they were supposed to get access to the laptops. But according to Rybiki, the DOJ did not want the FBI to have the laptops. Of course, the FBI believed they contained classified information, and normally in such a case they would have sought a grand jury subpoena or warrant. But this time, they didn’t play hardball; they negotiated with Clinton and her lawyers, who set the terms of the deal.
Once again, “the fix was in,” apparently from the DOJ.
We already know that Clinton and her lawyers got other concessions, too. Unbelievably, Cheryl Mills, a State Department confidant of Clinton and a witness in the case, was allowed to sit in as Clinton’s attorney for Clinton’s FBI interview. They also did not record her interview.
We still don’t know what happened to the laptops --- whether they were destroyed or are still in the custody of the FBI. Even Inspector General Michael Horowitz did not say in his report what happened to them. Tom Fitton of Judicial Watch has never been able to find out what happened to them, either.
According to Rybiki, there was much discussion and disagreement about who should have access to the laptops, with the DOJ (“I don’t know what level”) trying to restrict it.
Anyway, with all the hysteria over the Mueller report --- the result of an investigation based on made-up evidence --- THIS is the material that the media should be clamoring for. THIS is the evidence of actual lawbreaking by a Presidential candidate and actual obstruction of justice, by our own DOJ no less, a bureaucratic cover-up at the highest levels of government. I’m referring to the many pages of testimony that Judicial Watch and Republicans in Congress have been requesting seemingly forever and that are now gradually dripping out, verifying our worst suspicions.