Here are 7 key details about Robert Mueller's much-anticipated report

Congress finally received a summary of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report on the Russia investigation Sunday.

It did not get the full report, some of which remains confidential, but Attorney General William Barr sent a letter discussing the "principal" findings from the investigation, as well as his own determinations about the matter before him.

Here are seven key facts you should know about it:

1. Mueller did not find sufficient evidence of criminal "collusion" on the part of the Trump campaign to bring charges.

"The investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities," the report said.

Writers at Lawfare noted that this phrasing "would be consistent with, for example, a report that finds lots of 'evidence of collusion' that for one reason or another falls short of criminal conduct," emphasizing the need to see the final report.

2. Mueller refused to make a judgment about whether Trump obstructed justice.

Instead, his report lays out the evidence on both sides of the case of obstruction. Barr told Congress that Mueller believes that even though his report "does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him."

3. Barr and Deputy Attorney Rod Rosenstein, who first appointed Mueller, concluded Trump did not obstruct justice.

Based on the report, Barr and Rosenstein do not believe there is enough evidence to conclude Trump obstructed justice. Barr wrote that the fact that Mueller found no underlying crime speaks to Trump's "intent" with regard to obstructing justice. He said that the determination was not made on the basis of the constitutional question of whether a president can be indicted.

4. Both Barr and Rosenstein have a dubious role in making this call.

This is perhaps the most troubling part of the report. Barr and Rosenstein's decision to take this determination upon themselves is highly dubious, given that there are clear reasons either could or should have recused from the question. First, Rosenstein was involved in Trump's firing of James Comey, likely a central event in any obstruction case. And second, Barr wrote a memo arguing against charging Trump with obstruction before he was picked as attorney general, a suspicious move that makes him appear conflicted in his role.

5. Congress will still want to know more.

With much of the report still kept confidential, Democrats will undoubtedly want to know more and will review more of the evidence from themselves.

6. Mueller appears to have conducted a thorough investigation.

In just a short period of time, and under enormous pressure, Mueller carried out a thorough investigation:

In the report, the Special Counsel noted that, in completing his investigation, he employed 19 lawyers who were assisted by a team of approximately 40 FBI agents, intelligence analysts, forensic accountants, and other professional staff. The Special Counsel issued more than 2,800 subpoenas, executed nearly 500 search warrants, obtained more than 230 orders for communication records, issued almost 50 orders authorizing use of pen registers, made 13 requests to foreign governments for evidence, and interviewed approximately 500 witnesses.

7. There are no more sealed indictments.

On Friday, the Justice Department confirmed that there were no more indictments coming from the special counsel. Some thought that left open the possibility that there were additional sealed indictments, but Barr made clear that was not the case.

Updated: Some of the language describing Mueller's conclusions has been clarified to more clearly reflect the report summary.


Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal
{{ }}

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.