Schumer, Pelosi Warn DOJ Not to Give Trump ‘Sneak Preview’ of Mueller Report
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Capitol Hill, January 25, 2019. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)
The Democratic leaders of the House and Senate warned the Justice Department on Friday not to give the Trump administration a “sneak preview” of special counsel Robert Mueller’s final report.
After Mueller filed his final report with Attorney General William Barr earlier on Friday, sending ripples of speculation about its contents through Washington, D.C. and the media, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer demanded that Barr “make the full report public and provide its underlying documentation and findings to Congress.”
The special counsel’s report marks the conclusion of the investigation into the Trump campaign’s relationship with Russia, as well as Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Barr sent a letter to the House and Senate Judiciary Committees Friday informing them that he was reviewing the report and would be consulting with Mueller and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to determine how much of the report to release to Congress and the public.
“I am reviewing the report and anticipate that I may be in a position to advise you of the special counsel’s principal conclusions as soon as this weekend,” the attorney general wrote.
“Attorney General Barr must not give President Trump, his lawyers or his staff any ‘sneak preview’ of Special Counsel Mueller’s findings or evidence, and the White House must not be allowed to interfere in decisions about what parts of those findings or evidence are made public,” they said in a joint statement.
“The Special Counsel’s investigation focused on questions that go to the integrity of our democracy itself: whether foreign powers corruptly interfered in our elections, and whether unlawful means were used to hinder that investigation,” the Democratic leaders said. “The American people have a right to the truth. The watchword is transparency.”
The White House said it is still in the dark about the contents of Mueller’s report.
“The next steps are up to Attorney General Barr, and we look forward to the process taking its course. The White House has not received or been briefed on the Special Counsel’s report,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement.