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Mueller’s report summary draws Republicans’ counterattacks

Mueller’s report summary draws Republicans’ counterattacks

Posted March. 27, 2019 07:36,   

Updated March. 27, 2019 07:36


A four-page summary of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on U.S. President Donald Trump’s ties with Russia has drawn a sigh of relief from Republicans but created headaches for Democrats. As Mueller’s investigation into the so-called Russia scandal and Trump’s alleged obstruction of justice did not conclude that the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with Russia during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Trump and Republicans have started staging counterattacks against the Democratic Party.

Democrats have been demanding that Attorney General William Barr swiftly make Mueller’s full report public, but seem to be in complete chaos without a fixed plan B.

President Trump made an about-face on the special counsel, who he had slammed as a “liar,” saying on Monday that Mueller has acted honorably. “There’s a lot of people out there that have done some very, very evil things, very bad things. I would say treasonous things, against our country,” Trump said. “Those people will certainly be looked at.” Though he did not name the alleged culprits, it seems he was referring to Democrats who pushed for the investigation, some of his aides who turned their back on him while collaborating with the probe, and media that covered their stories.

Senator Lindsey Graham, one of the president’s allies and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman, called for a probe into “the other side of the story,” in an apparent reference to the Hillary Clinton campaign. During the presidential election, the Clinton campaign raised suspicions that the Trump side hacked leading Democrats’ emails, demanding a special investigation.

Meanwhile, Democrats, who have long protected the special counsel in expectation of an outcome, are finding themselves in a tricky situation. “Now that Mueller has finished his work with no additional indictments, with a finding of no collusion and a decision of no judgment on whether Trump obstructed justice, things have changed significantly. Democrats must now reckon with a far different set of political realities,” the Washington Post said.

Three days after the memo was released, the special counsel was seen attending St. John’s Episcopal Church across from the White House in Washington on Sunday. People flocked to the site to get a glimpse of him, even bringing traffic to a standstill in the neighborhood, but Mueller remained tight-lipped about the probe’s result.

Mi-Kyung Jung mickey@donga.com