The House of Representatives today voted overwhelmingly to ask the Justice Department to make public the complete report expected to be finished soon by Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller. However, the resolution will not be considered in the Senate because of objections by President Trump's pal, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC).
The American people deserve to have this information so they can have a clear understanding of whether their president and his 2016 campaign for election have been unduly influenced by Russia, America's arch enemy.
Said Rep. Will Hurd (R-Tex.), a member of the House Intelligence Committee and former CIA officer, “I want the American people to know as much as they can and to see as much as they can. The taxpayers paid millions for this information, and they should get to see all of it.”
The House resolution cannot, on its own, force Attorney General William P. Barr to make the report public. But the House vote -- including the overwhelming support of Republicans -- is a strong indicator that he will be under intense pressure to do so once Mueller's report is released. During his confirmation hearing, Barr refused to commit to releasing the report.
Graham's At It Again
Trump's golfing buddy, South Carolina's Sen. Graham, once again is doing his best to protect Trump. His blind loyalty to the president is remarkable, to say the least, given his pointed criticism of Trump when he was seeking the Republican presidential nomination.
Yet, now Graham is doing all that he can to support Trump in every way possible. Today, he blocked efforts by Senate Minority Leader to bring the House resolution to a vote, saying he would not permit such a vote unless lawmakers also urged the attorney general to appoint a second special counsel “to investigate Department of Justice misconduct” during federal investigations of Trump’s alleged Russia ties and Hillary Clinton’s emails.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer would have none of that.
An important related question is whether Barr will protect Trump if the results of the investigation show that he broke the law by claiming that a sitting president cannot be indicted according to his interpretation of Department of Justice rules.
"To maintain that a sitting president cannot be indicted no matter how much evidence there is because he’s a sitting president, and then to withhold evidence of wrongdoing from Congress because the president cannot be charged, is to convert the DOJ policy into the means for a coverup,” said House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY).
Let's hope the Mueller investigation concludes soon, and let's hope that the complete report -- not sterilized cliff notes -- is made public for all to see. No more coverups, please.