GOP attorneys release a devastating video that lays out the case for Trump’s prosecution – Raw Story


A group of prominent Republican attorneys this week released a new video arguing that President Donald Trump would have been charged with obstruction of justice by special counsel Robert Mueller had Department of Justice guidelines allowed for the indictment of a sitting president.

The video features three prominent lawyers who have served under Republican presidents: Jeffrey Harris, who served as deputy associate Attorney General under President Ronald Reagan; Paul Rosenzweig, a deputy assistant Secretary of Homeland Security for former President George W. Bush; and Donald Ayer, who served as deputy Attorney General for George H.W. Bush.

 

Source: GOP attorneys release a devastating video that lays out the case for Trump’s prosecution – Raw Story

Did Trump obstruct justice? 5 questions Congress must answer : The Conversation


“If we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President of the United States did not commit obstruction of justice, we would so state. … However, we are unable to reach that judgment.”

That was special counsel Robert Mueller’s blunt conclusion about whether President Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice. It’s found early in Mueller’s report of his 22-month investigation into potentially criminal aspects of Donald Trump’s campaign and presidency.

Mueller’s full report – submitted to the Department of Justice on March 22 and published online with redactions on April 19 – highlights 10 areas in which the president may have committed obstruction of justice. I’ve read this 400-page document closely, and judging as a law professor and former elected official, I find multiple episodes that describe possible crimes.

These include: firing FBI Director James Comey, who was overseeing an investigation into possible collusion between Trump’s 2016 campaign and the Russian government; attempting to curtail the special counsel’s investigation and fire Mueller; and making statements that could have discouraged former campaign aides from testifying truthfully.

After reviewing all Mueller’s evidence, Attorney General William Barr determined that the president did not obstruct justice. But Mueller concluded that he could neither charge nor exonerate Trump, and indicated that Congress should consider the evidence.

Here’s how lawmakers will determine whether Trump committed a crime.

1. Did Trump act ‘corruptly’?

According to federal law, obstruction occurs when a person tries to impede or influence a trial, investigation or other official proceeding with threats or corrupt intent. Bribing a judge and destroying evidence are classic examples of obstruction.

 

Source: Did Trump obstruct justice? 5 questions Congress must answer : The Conversation

The Memo:  Mueller’s depictions will fuel Trump angst | TheHill


Special counsel Robert Mueller painted a damning picture of the Trump administration, even as he handed the president a victory on the central issue of collusion with Russia.

The Trump White House, as portrayed by Mueller, revolves around an impulsive and angry president who issues orders that underlings often defy, ignore or seek to delay.

The depiction will enrage a president who fixates on the concept of strength and is hypersensitive about any suggestion that he is not in absolute control of his administration.

“He will be livid to see this spelled out — and it is not clear that he is always aware when his advisers are doing this,” said Julian Zelizer, a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University. “For someone who is already a little bit paranoid about institutional opponents, it will create even more of a sense of distrust within the White House.”

But people who have served in the Trump White House told The Hill that they heard the ring of familiarity — and felt no surprise — at the depictions offered in the special counsel’s report.

“I’ve personally been on the receiving end of a Trump broadside for trying to get him not to do something nuts,” one former White House official recalled ruefully.

A GOP strategist with ties to the White House, asked about the willingness of advisers to frustrate the president’s desires, laughed and said, “I think it was a good thing.”

The strategist asserted that Trump could be “very impulsive and choose to pop off” — a trait that created an imperative among people around him to save him from himself.

“Many of his staff who have experience — legal or political — understood the great perils that he would put himself in,” the strategist said.

Referring to those details becoming public, this source added, “I think it will annoy him. It will make him angrier. But at the same time, it may be a private lesson that he is learning that his staff were loyal by protecting him.”

It is far from clear that Trump sees it that way.

The president tweeted on Friday that statements within the Mueller report “are fabricated & totally untrue.”

Trump added, “Watch out for people that take so-called ‘notes,’ when the notes never existed until needed.”

The remark could be seen as a reference to former White House counsel Donald McGahn.

According to Mueller,

 

Source: The Memo: Mueller’s depictions will fuel Trump angst | TheHill

All the president’s men and women: how disobedient aides saved Trump | US news | The Guardian


‘The president’s efforts to influence the investigation were mostly unsuccessful,’ Mueller wrote.
 ‘The president’s efforts to influence the investigation were mostly unsuccessful,’ Robert Mueller wrote. Photograph: Rex/Shutterstock

The myth of Donald Trump presents him as a man of authority, a leader loved and feared, a boss who demands loyalty – and gets it.

In fact, nobody much listens to what Trump says and that fact might have saved his presidency, according to one of the more startling passages in the 448-page report by special counsel Robert Mueller that was released on Thursday.

“The president’s efforts to influence the investigation were mostly unsuccessful,” Mueller writes, describing potential criminal obstruction of justice, “but that is largely because the persons who surrounded the president declined to carry out orders or accede to his requests.”

If all the president’s men failed Richard Nixon by losing a grip on their conspiracy, this president’s men and women may have helped Trump by treating his conspiratorial orders as exactly what they were, invitations to likely criminal conduct, and duly ignoring them.

“It’s more than a little ironic, for all the talk of the ‘unitary executive’ and the ‘deep state conspiracy’, that the refusal by Trump’s own staffers and subordinates to do much of his bidding may have helped to insulate the president from a firmer conclusion about obstruction,” tweeted Steve Vladeck, a professor at the University of Texas School of Law.

 

Source: All the president’s men and women: how disobedient aides saved Trump | US news | The Guardian

Trump-Mueller report – live: Congress issues subpoena for full unredacted text as president lashes out amid talk of impeachment | The Independent


Donald Trump has lashed out at a number of perceived enemies after the publication of the long-awaited Mueller report, which painted a damning portrait of the president’s conduct since taking office.

Mr Trump attacked overnight the media, a federal investigator and former FBI official, all while claiming there “wasn’t any evidence” he committed a crime.

The 450-page document, released in redacted form on Thursday, in fact outlined numerous instances in which Mr Trump tried to obstruct the investigation; potential crimes Mr Mueller declined to reach conclusions on.

 

Source: Trump-Mueller report – live: Congress issues subpoena for full unredacted text as president lashes out amid talk of impeachment | The Independent

What happens next with the Mueller report? 3 essential reads : The Conversation


One month after Robert Mueller submitted the final report on his investigation into Donald Trump, its contents have finally been made public – meaning that the Department of Justice is no longer the only one analyzing and interpreting Mueller’s findings.

Attorney General William Barr has publicly stated his belief that Mueller’s inquiry exonerates the president of criminal wrongdoing. Now, the American public will get to draw its own conclusions.

Congress, state prosecutors and district attorneys nationwide, too, are digging into the Mueller report to decide whether Mueller found evidence that Trump obstructed justice, colluded with Russia or committed any impeachable offenses. Beyond Mueller’s federal inquiry, a dozen city and state prosecutors have launched investigations into possible criminal wrongdoing by Trump, his family and his business.

As Mueller’s investigation evolves from political saga to legal analysis, here are three key threads our experts have been watching.

1. Obstruction of justice

Barr’s determination that Trump did not commit obstruction of justice differs from the conclusion Mueller drew in his own report. According to the special counsel, “while this report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”

How can two people draw different conclusions from the same evidence?

 

Source: What happens next with the Mueller report? 3 essential reads : The Conversation

Asia Times | ‘Disturbing evidence’ of Trump obstruction | Article 


Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s long-awaited report revealed a two-year campaign of obstruction by Donald Trump, senior Democrats said Thursday, vowing to hold the US president accountable.

“Even in its incomplete form, the Mueller report outlines disturbing evidence that President Trump engaged in obstruction of justice and other misconduct,” said Representative Jerrold Nadler, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

“The responsibility now falls to Congress to hold the president accountable for his actions,” he said in a statement.

Attorney General Bill Barr on Thursday released the redacted 400-page report after already declaring that it provided no proof that Trump colluded with Russian intelligence to influence the 2016 presidential election.

 

Source: Asia Times | ‘Disturbing evidence’ of Trump obstruction | Article

Mueller report: Trump camp celebrates but danger is not past yet | US news | The Guardian


Robert Mueller, seen in 2009.
 Robert Mueller, seen in 2009. Photograph: Gerald Herbert/AP

It was, said Rudy Giuliani, lawyer to Donald Trump, like waiting for a baby to be born. Then he reached for a darker simile: it was more like waiting for a jury to deliver its verdict.

“I’ll hand out cigars if it’s good news,” he told the Washington Post.

At about 4.30pm on Friday, the wait was over. Special counsel Robert Mueller’s report into Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election was handed to the justice department. But it was still not clear if the baby was a boy or a girl, or if the jury found the defendant guilty or not guilty.

The conclusions of the Mueller investigation remained under lock and key, Washington’s biggest secret, fuelling feverish speculation. As Attorney General William Barr considers how much of the report to make public, a moment of truth that could break the Trump presidency, millions of Americans remain on the edge of their seats over the defining questions of whether he colluded with Moscow to win election and sought to obstruct justice once in the White House.

But one fact was established with certainty this week: after an investigation costing millions of dollars and spanning 674 days, hundreds of interviews, thousands of documents and criminal charges against 34 individuals – including six in Trump’s inner circle – Mueller will not recommend any further indictments. It therefore appeared that Trump’s son, Don Jr, and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, were off the hook.

This was despite both men attending a meeting at Trump Tower in June 2016 with a Russian lawyer to hear potentially damaging information about Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. “If it’s what you say I love it,” Don Jr wrote in an email to Rob Goldstone, a British publicist who arranged the meeting. Prosecutors said the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, was an agent for the Kremlin. Don Jr and Goldstone claim that she offered nothing of substance and wasted their time.

 

Source: Mueller report: Trump camp celebrates but danger is not past yet | US news | The Guardian

As Washington waits for Mueller, ‘everything about this is political’ : NBC News


WASHINGTON — With special counsel Robert Mueller reportedly moving into the final stages of his Russian investigation, there’s little certainty as to how the next steps might play out.

A panel of legal experts and experienced lawmakers broke down the myriad of possible outcomes for Mueller’s investigation on Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” discussing the effect the long investigation has had on the hyper-partisanship in government.

“The question of the Russian interference and the possibility of collusion by the president and his people has twisted our politics into something unrecognizable for the last two years, including behavior on the part of the president — attacking the FBI, attacking Bob Mueller,” Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., said.

“Everything about this is political. The way to end that is for the truth to be out there.”

 

Source: As Washington waits for Mueller, ‘everything about this is political’ : NBC News