Elder Patriot| Kerri Kupec, spokeswoman for the Department of Justice and Peter Carr, spokesman for the Special Counsel’s Office, have released a joint statement hoping to neuter Mueller’s seeming attempt to incriminate President Trump with his statement yesterday.
Here’s what Special Counsel Robert Mueller said yesterday:
We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime. The introduction to the volume two of our report explains that decision. It explains that under long-standing Department policy, a President cannot be charged with a federal crime while he is in office. That is unconstitutional. Even if the charge is kept under seal and hidden from public view, that too is prohibited. The special counsel’s office is part of the Department of Justice and by regulation it was bound by that Department policy. Charging the president with a crime was, therefore, not an option we could consider.
When coupled with the rest of Mueller’s statement it appeared that Mueller had deliberately left listeners with the impression that, but for the Office of Legal Counsel opinion, he would have brought charges against President Trump.
That would have contradicted this earlier statement made under penalty of perjury by Attorney General William Barr:
“We were frankly surprised that they were not going to reach a decision on obstruction and we asked them a lot about the reasoning behind this. Mueller stated three times to us in that meeting, in response to our questioning, that he emphatically was not saying that but for the OLC opinion he would have found obstruction.”
“We specifically asked him about the OLC opinion and whether or not he was taking a position that he would have found a crime but for the existence of the OLC opinion. And he made it very clear several times that was not his position.”
Now here’s the clarifying statement:
The Attorney General has previously stated that the Special Counsel repeatedly affirmed that he was not saying that, but for the OLC opinion, he would have found the President obstructed justice. The Special Counsel’s report and his statement today made clear that the office concluded it would not reach a determination – one way or the other – about whether the President committed a crime. There is no conflict between these statements.
In other words, Mueller agreed to temper the intended takeaway from yesterday’s statement.
I imagine the conversation that took place between the two old friends, Mueller and Barr, went something like this:
“Bob, I listened to your statement this morning. Are you sure you want to go this route? I’ve been reviewing declassified documents and, friend to friend, we both know this won’t end well for you, if you do.”
“Bill, tell me what we’re looking at if you would, old friend?”
A.G. Barr brings him up to date on the evidence U.S. Attorney John Durham and Inspector General Horowitz have uncovered so far after which Mueller asks his old friend:
“Bill, what can you do for me?
Barr let’s him sign on to the latest statement that, tortured as it is, reconciles the two contradictory statements.
All of this seems to confirm our suspicions that Mueller was reciting words that had been prepared for him by others. It appears that the team of “angry” Democrats were using the aging prosecutor for their own corrupt political purposes.