Attorney General William Barr testifies before Congress
Attorney General William Barr just shut the door on Chairwoman Nita Lowey when she asks if the White House has seen or been briefed on Mueller report.
"I'm not going to say anything more about it,” Barr responded.
What he did say: He's planning on releasing the redacted report "within a week." Until then, Barr wants to wait on discussing it further.
Attorney General William Barr said the Department of Justice is working on redacting special counsel Robert Mueller's report. The special counsel's office is helping with the process.
Barr said there are four areas of information that need to be redacted before the report can be released:
- Grand jury information
- Information that would reveal intelligence sources and methods
- Parts of the report that could interfere with ongoing prosecution
- Information that implicates the privacy of "peripheral players"
Barr has already released his summary of the report. He said the special counsel was given the opportunity to review his original March 24th letter, but Mueller declined to review it.
Attorney General William Barr said the process of redacting special counsel Robert Mueller's report on his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election is going well, and he expects to release the report within the next week.
"Ay original timetable of being able to release this by mid-April stands. So I think that from my standpoint, by within a week, I will be in a position to release the report to the public," he said.
Attorney General William Barr's opening statement touched on the opioid crisis, immigration and cybercrime — but not special counsel Robert Mueller's report on Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Barr is testifying before the House appropriations subcommittee about the Justice Department budget. He detailed President Trump's budget requests and how the Justice Department would use the funds.
Remember: Even if Attorney General William Barr declines to speak about the special counsel probe at this hearing, he is coming back to Capitol Hill on May 1 and May 2 for hearings specifically to answer questions about the Mueller investigation.
Those hearings will be before the Senate and House Judiciary Committees.
House Appropriations Chairwoman Nita Lowey told Barr that his handling of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report was "unacceptable" and the summary he released "raises more questions than it answers."
"I look forward to reviewing the Mueller report myself, and I know my constituents do as well. I understand that portions of it must be redacted as a matter of law, but my hope is that you will stop there and bring transparency to this process as soon as possible," Lowey said.
Right off the top, Chairman Jose Serrano mentioned "the elephant in the room" and said he believes "the American people deserve to see the full Mueller report."
Here's his full quote:
And of course, we cannot hold this hearing without mentioning the elephant in the room, and I am not referring to my colleagues on the other side. Two and a half weeks ago the Mueller report was completed. In extremely quick fashion, you turned a 300-plus page report into a 4-page letter that supposedly summarized the findings.
Last week, the New York Times reported that the Special Counsel’s office had already created summary documents that were ignored in your letter, and that some investigators within the Special Counsel’s office felt that within the Special Counsel’s office your summary understates the level of malfeasance by the President and several of his campaign and White House advisors.
The American people have been left with many unanswered questions; serious concerns about the process by which you formulated your letter; and uncertainty about when we can expect to see the full report.
I believe the American people deserve to see the full Mueller Report, and to be trusted to make their own determinations on the merits based on what the Special Counsel has presented.
Attorney General William Barr is making his first public appearance at a congressional budget hearing since releasing a summary of the special counsel Robert Mueller's report.
Democratic aides say no topics are off limits for Tuesday's hearing, and they're likely to ask Barr about...
- Mueller and his report
- The Justice Department budget
- The Trump administration's lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act
- Gun violence
Republican lawmakers, on the other hand, are not expected to ask questions about Mueller and will focus on budget issues in the hearing, according to a GOP aide.