At least one former federal prosecutor believes that Special Counsel Robert Mueller‘s Russia report may very well contain information that will lead to impeachment proceedings.
We learned on Monday from the Department of Justice that the redacted version of the report is going public on Thursday morning. In advance of that, President Donald Trump has continued tweeting.
Attorney General William Barr has already said that Mueller did not exonerate the president of obstruction of justice. He has also said that both he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein determined that the evidence was “not sufficient” for such a charge. He has further spoken on multiple occasions about what would be redacted in the report and why.
In any event, it’s been long predicted that Mueller’s report, in not exonerating the president, might have some damaging or embarrassing things to say on the subject of obstruction. Things that, while not rising to the level of criminal, may still be seen as high crimes and misdemeanors in the eyes of Congress. In other words, material that would result in drawing up articles of impeachment. In response to a report that offices on the Hill are ordering whiskey and preparing pizza orders for the Thursday news dump, MSNBC legal analyst Glenn Kirschner said there was a “strong likelihood” of impeachment-worthy material.
The obstruction rebuttal from Trump’s lawyers is reportedly being “whittl[ed] down” from 140 pages to around 50 pages.
“I think there is a strong likelihood that the Mueller report will have evidence of high crimes and misdemeanors that will make Nixon’s criminal behavior looking like jaywalking. Impeachment hearings are necessary to expose Trump’s transgressions, IMO. #JusticeIsComing,” said Kirschner, a 30-year federal prosecutor in the D.C. U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Kirschner then addressed the redaction issue. Barr said that redactions would be color-coded based on whether they were grand jury information, related to intel sources and methods, information about uncharged parties or information related to ongoing cases. He also said those redactions would be accompanied by explanatory notes.
“Eventually, the entire report will be disclosed. However, with Barr In charge of the color-coded redactions, I fully expect his opening salvo will be a ‘rainbow of obfuscation’, a ‘technicolor coverup’… I could use some help here with more ‘colorful’ descriptions – anybody?” Kirschner quipped.
Although Rod Rosenstein recently spoke out in defense of his boss, calling criticism of Barr “bizarre,” more reason to scrutinize Barr resurfaced on Monday. He’s had a history of saying one thing in advance of a full report’s release and the report saying something else later on. For those believing that Barr has been running interference for the president on the obstruction issue, it’s perhaps more proof that he is capable of such a thing.
[Image via Spencer Platt/Getty Images]
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