Mueller to make 1st public statement on Russia probe
WASHINGTON (AP) — Special counsel Robert Mueller is set to make his first public statement on the Russia investigation Wednesday, the Justice Department said.
Mueller will speak at the Justice Department at 11 a.m. and won’t take any questions.
It was not clear what he intended to say, but the statement comes amid demands for Mueller to testify on Capitol Hill about his findings and tension with Attorney General William Barr over the handling of his report.
Mueller’s report into Russia meddling in the 2016 election did not find that Russia and the Trump campaign coordinated to sway the presidential election. It also did not reach a conclusion on whether Trump had obstructed justice, with Mueller saying he did not think it would be fair to publicly accuse the president of a crime if he could not charge him. A Justice Department legal opinion says sitting presidents cannot be indicted.
Barr has said he was surprised that Mueller did not reach a conclusion, and decided with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein that the evidence did not support an obstruction of justice allegation.
Mueller, for his part, privately complained to Barr that a four-page letter the attorney general wrote summarizing his main conclusions did not adequately capture the investigation’s findings. Barr has called Mueller’s letter “snitty.”
Barr is currently in Alaska for work.
A senior White House official said “the White House was notified” on Tuesday night that Mueller might make a statement Wednesday.
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