Former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner laid out more than a half dozen ways that Donald Trump and William Barr are trying to silence special counsel Robert Mueller ahead of his testimony on Wednesday – but Kirschner said they will likely fail.
During an interview with MSNBC’s Ari Melber, the former federal prosecutor listed at least seven ways Trump’s protectors at the Justice Department are trying to muzzle special counsel Robert Mueller.
“They say, ‘Bob Mueller, you better stick to the four corners of your report, and here’s what you’re prohibited from doing. Don’t talk about grand jury materials. Don’t talk about redactions. Don’t talk about ongoing investigations. Don’t mention uncharged persons. Don’t talk about executive privilege. Don’t mention the deliberative process. Don’t mention any attorney-work client privilege’,” Kirschner said.
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) July 23, 2019
I see this last-ditch attempt at the Bill Barr Department of Justice to try to muzzle Bob Mueller by sending the letter, the two-page letter that was sent yesterday. I would say it’s a letter of do’s and don’ts, but it’s really just a letter of don’ts. When you read that two-page letter, it’s surprising how many prohibitions they could actually cram into just two pages. Let me just tick through them really quickly. They say, Bob Mueller, you better stick to the four corners of your report, and here’s what you’re prohibited from doing. Don’t talk about grand jury materials. Don’t talk about redactions. Don’t talk about ongoing investigations. Don’t mention uncharged persons. Don’t talk about executive privilege. Don’t mention the deliberative process. Don’t mention any attorney-work client privilege. … You know, they’re trying to muzzle Mueller, but I don’t think they’re going to be able to do it. Mueller is not going to be impacted by outside forces trying to edit him and trying to limit him. The only thing that edits and limits Bob Mueller is the internal man. He will be guided by what he thinks is right and just and fair. He is not going to be pushed somewhere he doesn’t want to go, but, you know, I think the most interesting question, Ari, is if he is asked questions beyond the four corners of his report that don’t implicate any of the privileges that I think he should be concerned about, does he answer? Because he did take an oath to tell the whole truth and to be responsive to questions. So I think that may present Bob Mueller with a little bit of an internal struggle.
Mueller isn’t going to be pushed around
If there is one thing we know about Robert Mueller, it’s that he is his own man. He will not be used as a political football by either side of the aisle, no matter how much that frustrates lawmakers in both parties.
When he sits before Congress, he will not allow the pressure being put on him by the president and the Justice Department to muzzle him.
Donald Trump and his DOJ protectors are so hellbent on preventing Mueller from going beyond the contents of his report that they are forgetting about the damning conclusions he has already laid out in the 448-page document.
At the end of the day, the growing pressure the special counsel is facing from Trump, Barr and other Republicans will be irrelevant. All Mueller has to do on Wednesday is read his report – which most Americans haven’t done themselves – and let the damning truth speak for itself.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.