Ahead of former special counsel Robert Mueller's testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence panels Wednesday morning, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to maintain that did not obstruct justice during the 2016 presidential election. After tweeting, "NO COLLUSION, NO OBSTRUCTION!" Trump wrote, "KEEP AMERICA GREAT!"
In fact, all of Trump's tweets Wednesday morning were about Mueller. He claimed that "Democrats and others can illegally fabricate a crime, try pinning it on a very innocent President, and when he fights back against this illegal and treasonous attack on our Country, they call It Obstruction? Wrong!"
He continued his calls against allowing Mueller's deputy, Aaron Zebley, to appear next to the special counsel as his counsel at the hearings. "This was specifically NOT agreed to, and I would NEVER have agreed to it. The Greatest Witch Hunt in U.S. history, by far!" he tweeted. As could be expected, Trump's remarks brought out all types of reactions from Twitter users.
I'm 100% voting for TRUMP!— #ThePersistence (@ScottPresler) July 24, 2019
You don’t Make America Great Again by oppressing minorities, protecting corporations, fighting perpetual war, ignoring education and denying science. Stop scapegoating undocumented, poor and disadvantaged for your problems, be part of these great United States #FactCheckMAGA— ♻️🇺🇸 Christopher Zullo (@ChrisJZullo) July 24, 2019
Dear America: note that the United States president will sit and do nothing today but watch tv all day about how and why he is a CORRUPT TRAITOR...#Trump— Andy Ostroy (@AndyOstroy) July 24, 2019
During the hearing, which Mueller is appearing in before subpoena, Mueller opened his testimony by going over his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. He said his investigation found that the "Russian government interfered in our election in sweeping and systematic fashion."
He also said that the investigation "did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired with the Russian government in its election interference activities," adding that the report "did not address 'collusion,' which is not a legal term."
He confirmed that his report did not exonerate Trump, with House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerry Nadler asking, "So the report did not conclude that he did not commit obstruction of justice? Is that correct?" Mueller responded, "That is correct."
"And what about total exoneration? Did you actually totally exonerate the President?" Nadler asked.
"No," Mueller replied."
Mueller said it was "true" that Trump refused to sit for an interview with the special counsel, despite the team's multiple attempts.
He also said that the Russian government wanted Trump to win the 2016 presidential election. When Rep. Zoe Lofgren, a Democrat from California, asked if the investigation found that "the Russian government perceived it would benefit from one of the candidates winning," Mueller said they did.
"And which candidate would that be?" Lofgren asked. "Well, it would be Mr. Trump," Mueller responded.
After citing Justice Department rules that he could not prosecute a sitting president, Mueller suggested that it's possible Trump could be charged after leaving the White House — although Mueller did not say if Trump should be prosecuted.
"Is it correct that if you had concluded that the President committed the crime of obstruction, you could not publicly state that in your report or here today?" Nadler asked.
"The statement would be that you would not indict, and you would not indict because under the OLC opinion, excuse me, a sitting president cannot be indicted, it would be unconstitutional," Mueller responded.
"Under Department of Justice policy, the President could be prosecuted for obstruction of justice crimes after he leaves office, correct?" Nadler asked.
"True," Mueller said.0comments