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Round Two: Mueller Testifies in Front of House Intelligence Committee

Round Two: Mueller Testifies in Front of House Intelligence Committee

This hearing will focus on Volume I, which addressed the Russian attempts to interfere with our election.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KofNmNat6us

Former Special Counsel Robert Mueller testified for over three and half hours in front of the House Judiciary Committee this morning where we learned nothing new.

Now Mueller will testify over Volume I of his report in front of the House Intelligence Committee.

No Trump Subpoena

Mueller did not subpoena Trump because he knew it would cause the probe to drag:

“The expectation was if we did subpoena for the president, he would fight it and we would be in the midst of the investigation for a substantial period of time,” said Mr. Mueller in response to questions from Democrat Sean Maloney.

“We were almost towards the end of our investigation and we had little success in pushing to get the interview of the president, we decided that we did not want to exercise the subpoena powers because of the necessity of expediting the end of the investigation,” Mr. Mueller explain.

He said there was no prohibition imposed on him by the Department of Justice about whether he could submit a subpoena.

Mr. Trump did supply written answers to questions, which Mr. Mueller said were effectively under oath but were not as helpful as an interview would have been.

Trump or Hillary?

Rep. Himes asked Mueller who Russia wanted to win and Mueller said Trump.

However, he said that Hillary did receive some of the exact same treatment.

Mueller said that the effect on the election is being investigated by other entities.

Mueller also said he would not speculate if Russia’s actions affected our election.

Himes also asked Mueller what a 2020 candidate should do if offered dirt from a foreign person or government. We all know that gathering dirt on your opponent is normal. Mueller said that it depends on the circumstance if it’s a crime.

Mueller Corrected Previous Testimony

Before he began this hearing, Mueller wanted to correct testimony to Rep. Ted Lieu in the morning hearing:

His original answer was seen as Mueller saying the only reason the President was not indicted was because, as president, he cannot be indicated.

However, Mueller clarified the correct view is that they made no assessment as to whether there was a crime or not because of the OLC guidance.

“Now before we go to questions, I want to add on correction to my testimony this morning. I want to go back to one thing that was said this morning by Mr. Lieu who said, and I quote, you didn’t charge the President because of the OLC opinion. That is not the correct way to say it,” Mueller said.
Mueller then corrected Lieu’s wording: “As we say in the report, and as I said at the opening, we did not reach a determination as to whether the President committed a crime. With that, Mr. Chairman, I’m ready to answer questions.”

What you need to know about the OLC opinion: Internal Justice Department policies say that a sitting president cannot be indicted. The policy comes from the OLC — the Office of Legal Counsel — and it dates back to the Nixon administration. It is binding on all Justice Department employees, including Mueller and his team of prosecutors.

In his report, Mueller directly explained how this had a major impact on his internal deliberations.

In effect, Mueller framed his entire obstruction investigation around the notion that he couldn’t bring any charges against Trump, even if he found ironclad evidence against him, because of the OLC opinion.

Deputy Special Counsel Joins Mueller

Mueller’s deputy Aaron Zebley has joined Mueller during this hearing. He is a longtime aide to Mueller:

Who is Mr. Zebley? He’s a close aide of Mr. Mueller who has served alongside him in several jobs over the past decade.

Mr. Zebley came up through the FBI ranks, jumped over to the Justice Department to serve as a prosecutor and official in the national security division. Mr. Zebley returned to the FBI to serve as Mr. Mueller’s chief of staff while he was FBI director.

He left government service along with Mr. Mueller, following his former boss to the law firm Wilmer Hale. When Mr. Mueller was appointed special counsel in 2017,Mr. Zebley joined the special counsel office.

With the closing of the special counsel’s office in May, Mr. Zebley is now out of government.

Adam Schiff Opening Statement

Schiff used his opening statement to accuse Trump’s campaign of “disloyalty to the country:”

“Your investigation determined that the Trump campaign including Trump himself knew that a foreign power was intervening in our election and welcomed it, built Russian meddling into their strategy, and used it,” Mr. Schiff said.

“That disloyalty may not have been criminal. Constrained by uncooperative witnesses, the destruction of documents and the use of encrypted communications, your team was not able to establish each of the elements of the crime of conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt, so not a provable crime, in any event. But, I think, maybe, something worse,” Mr. Schiff said according to prepared remarks.

“A crime is the violation of a law written by Congress. But disloyalty to country violates the very obligation of citizenship, our devotion to a core principle on which our nation was founded, that we, the people, not some foreign power that wishes us ill, we decide, who shall govern, us,” Mr. Schiff said.

Details

The Intelligence Committee will focus on Volume I of the Mueller report. This portion concentrated on the Russian 2016 election interference so the committee will ask about collusion.

I imagine like the previous testimony Mueller will tell the representatives to refer to the report or that he cannot answer due to ongoing investigations.

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Comments

Mueller is Chance in Being There.

Paul In Sweden | July 24, 2019 at 12:57 pm

(“It seems to me that Mueller’s Job was to take down the Trump Administration or if unable to do so he was to hinder and smear the Trump Administration.”)

Mueller insists he hired the best people to do the job and the high quality of “The Mueller Report” substantiates that his people were the best people to do that job.

Who among us could disagree with what Mueller stated?

Mueller did a fine job given the known fact that neither Trump nor any of his staff had colluded/conspired with the Russians to alter the outcome of the 2016 Presidential Elections; unlike Hillary Clinton, The Obama Administration, The DNC, the FBI, the DOJ and current and former members of numerous foreign governments.

The only problem that I have is that it seems the “Job” of his investigation and goal of “The Mueller Report” is clearly misstated numerous times throughout the report.

It seems to me that Mueller’s Job was to take down the Trump Administration or if unable to do so he was to hinder and smear the Trump Administration.

What else can be suggested as to what that “Job” might have been?

    oldgoat36 in reply to Paul In Sweden. | July 24, 2019 at 2:07 pm

    Herr Mueller would be telling the truth about hiring the best people for the true mandate he had, taking down Trump. He knew exactly what he was doing with hiring every single left wing person he could, there is zero chance a politically connected person such as Mueller wouldn’t know the politics of any of the people he chose, and you don’t get 100% of one party by accident.

    Herr Mueller wasn’t even on the job. He was paid to make it look like it was to be a fair attempted coup, while he collected his hefty paycheck for the rabid work of his leftist team.

    He must have the same higher loyalty that Comey has.

    Herr Mueller didn’t want to testify because he knows what a sham his whole investigation was, and he doesn’t even know what is in the report he “stands behind”.

    The report, if truly conducted by the best possible people, surely shows a lack of knowledge of the law and constitution. That was his “best”??? Surrounded by political hacks who were known for a long time to be leftists. The only excuse is if Herr Mueller is senile or brain dead.

Be interesting to see if he adopts the dithering old man persona in this hearing.

2smartforlibs | July 24, 2019 at 1:04 pm

Do you need any more proof was the “of counsel” member of the inquisition? He lent his name and collected his pay.

CNN later tonight: Republicans beat up dottering old man.

    MattMusson in reply to OnPoint. | July 24, 2019 at 1:26 pm

    An old man too senile to find obvious Collusion.

      bw222 in reply to MattMusson. | July 24, 2019 at 1:55 pm

      Don’t be surprised if the left demands a “re-do.” Maybe Jeff Sessions wasn’t as dumb as we give him credit for in appointing Mueller.

        OnPoint in reply to bw222. | July 24, 2019 at 2:52 pm

        Rosenstein appointed Mueller, not Sessions. He had already recused himself and was surprised by it when he was in the Oval Office with Trump.

Paul In Sweden | July 24, 2019 at 1:19 pm

In response to Schiff, Mueller dishonestly characterization Trump’s statement during the 2016 campaign asked the Russians to hack Hillary Clinton.

The media, domestic and foreign, and the social platforms, including the umbrella corporation “Alphabet”, spent billions to spread disinformation and influence the election. Surely, the significance of the Soviet influence can be attributed to the prophecy of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming, a progressive (i.e. runaway or “great leap”) condition.

That said, Obama spied, Clinton colluded, Biden obstructed, DNC denied, and the media planned and prosecuted multi-trimester witch hunts and warlock trials.

Paul In Sweden | July 24, 2019 at 1:48 pm

Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH)Mr. Mueller, neither you nor AG Barr have/had the power of office to exonerate anyone yet you went out of your way to state that investigation(“The Mueller Report”) was unable to exonerate POTUS Trump.

question – was Herr Mueller asked how they came to the conclusion the Russians hacked Hillary’s illegal bathroom server?

be nice to get him on the record for that

even if he refuses to answer and pleads the 5th

    Paul In Sweden in reply to fishstick. | July 24, 2019 at 2:02 pm

    Under the authority/direction of the Obama administration all govt. agencies were to repeat the talking points as given by Hillary Clinton. There was no federal investigation into either the DNC or Hillary Clinton servers, investigations were only done by Hillary Clinton employed personnel.

A tired LEO, withered and co-opted by unrelenting partisan politics, tasked with one last shit-job to close out his career.

    oldgoat36 in reply to MrE. | July 24, 2019 at 2:18 pm

    He didn’t have to take the job. Unless his owners made him take it, which begs the question who hand picked him from the deep state to do this job he didn’t actually do?

How long has Mueller been like this?Mentally he’s about 96.6% checked out. It’s evident everyone in the Washington DC government-media world know he’s punched his ticket, yet both Dem and Rep party power players involved want us little people to think otherwise.

Why is it that not one republican politely (and with a modicum of discretion) mentioned Mueller’s state of mind? How did Rod Rosenstien appoint a intellectually challenged special prosecutor and get away with it?

    oldgoat36 in reply to Tiki. | July 24, 2019 at 2:38 pm

    Mueller is working to save his own rear end. It’s hard to seem competent when you have to sort through every statement and question looking for what will trip you up and get you in hotter water.
    Herr Mueller knew what he was doing. He was figure head for the sham leftist attempted coup. His dream team were desperate. Mueller was barely involved despite being “in charge”.
    It really begs the question as to who owns him.

    fishstick in reply to Tiki. | July 24, 2019 at 2:38 pm

    no way I believe Mueller is THIS ignorant of his own special council

    the dirtbag is trying to stonewall his way through the committees without having to commit to anything written out in his report

    the Republicans, while having some good soundbites, are making it too easy for Mueller to stumble through these hearings without being exposed as the phony he is

    the very first question that should have been asked in this second hearing is where is the evidence that Russia hacked Hillary’s server

    Mueller would refuse to answer it (of course) but atleast he would be on the record for his not-answer

A few things about Mueller are clear now (if they weren’t before):

– Mueller wanted Trump out of office.
– Almost all of the lawyers Mueller hired were partisan Democrats.
– Mueller wanted Congress (and not himself) to take the lead for removing Trump from office.

One thing that wasn’t clear -but is now – is Mueller’s hands-off approach to the investigation, which gave the Democrats on his staff freedom to do what they wanted. Mueller was trying to lead from behind in the impeachment/removal efforts.

Anyone else think he looks like a boozer?

Comanche Voter | July 24, 2019 at 9:17 pm

Good old Adam. Always a Schiffhead.

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