Sunday, June 16, 2019

Understanding the Mueller Report

"We wrote it.  You read it."

Hey ... I am getting to enjoy these more frequent, brief, postings on the blog.  Keep "tuning in" to them.  And tell others to visit

                                                            *   *   *   *   *

Understanding the Mueller Report

A letter-writer published in today's Palm Beach Post suggested that all Special Counsel Mueller's investigation was supposed to involve was Russia's interference in the 2016 election.  "Not so," says I, resulting in my writing this letter, setting readers straight, on what the Mueller Report really said.   I hope they publish it.

Being retired with adequate time on my hands to read the Mueller Report, I have done so.  I do believe that many who comment on it have not done that.  An example of that is the letter-writer of June 11 who declared that the extent of Special counsel’s role “was to investigate Russian influence and the Trump presidential campaign to establish whether a crime was committed and provide the requisite evidence to support his findings and if need be, recommend indictment.”  That is incomplete.  It goes much further. The introduction to Volume Two of the Report specifically states that “The order appointing the Special Counsel gave this office jurisdiction to investigate matters that arose directly from the FBI’s Russia investigation, including whether the President had obstructed justice.”

Further quoting from the introduction to Volume One of the Mueller Report, “‘A statement that the investigation did not establish particular facts does not mean there was no evidence of those facts. In evaluating whether evidence about collective action of multiple individuals constituted a crime, we applied the framework of conspiracy law, not the concept of “collusion”.

Unfortunately, the legalese language in which the Mueller Report is written, by lawyers for lawyers, prevents most Americans from understanding that cooperation did indeed exist between Russia and the Trump presidential campaign, although not to the level which qualified as criminal under conspiracy law, and that in regard to the President, immune from indictment according to Department of Justice opinions, it concluded Volume Two by stating that “If we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President clearly did not commit obstruction of justice, we would so state.  Based on the facts and the applicable legal standards, however, we are unable to reach that judgement.  The evidence we obtained about the President’s actions and intent presents difficult issues that prevent us from conclusively determining that no criminal conduct occurred.  Accordingly, while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” 

The June 11 letter-writer obviously feels that such a conclusion goes beyond the scope of the Special Counsel’s mission.  I disagree. Those who have not read the Mueller Report should be encouraged to try to do so before commenting upon it.

It's all there in the Mueller Report, but unfortunately, getting at it is comparable to bothering to read all of the fine print in the deed to your home, your mortgage or rental agreement or even the "Terms of Service" of the internet service through whose servers you are reading this.

"All of the Above is Fake News.  I Wuz Exonerated."

No comments: