Muller Mayhem


credit- The Federalist

Annabelle Rosse, Staff Writer

A project two years in the making was finally released last week, causing a frenzy in the capitol.

Surely, you know what that project this is. For the longest time, politicians and the public have long awaited the release of the ‘Muller Report,’ which is supposed to detail Russian influence and meddling in the 2016 presidential elections and the subject of obstruction of justice. This report has been the center of conflict between the two parties. More recently, the conflict has grown at the presentation of Attorney General William Barr’s summary. In his summary, Barr explained that the report exonerated the president of collusion and obstruction. However, there are direct quotes from the report itself that challenges this statement.

In the report, Muller writes, “If we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President clearly did not commit obstruction of justice, we would so state.” This displays the clear fact that Muller and his team did not clear Trump on obstruction. Although many people would simply argue with the fact that if Muller found evidence of obstruction, how is there no laid-out indictment? The answer to that can be found be looking into the strict policies of the Justice Department. One certain policy in particular states that a sitting president can’t be indicted. Though this may secure some safety for the president, he is still at the mercy of Congress.

In the system of checks and balances laid down by the Constitution, Congress is granted the privilege to hold impeachment proceedings on the president. Armed with the evidence-packed report, Democrats in Congress have the means to launch these proceedings. Unity is important though in times like these and Congress might not have it.

It seems that a new boundary has formed in the blue. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has shown her negative opinion on this impeachment possibility. She has stated that such proceedings would “divide the country” and overall, “wouldn’t be worth it.” This seems to resonate with other fellow Democrats who feel that impeachment trials would use up time and resources that could be used to push towards more important things on Congress’s agenda. Pelosi also pressed on how Congress simply “wasn’t there yet.” This is referencing the guidelines of impeachment trials. There would have to be a ⅔ vote of yes from the Senate, which is virtually impossible at this time due to Republican control. She doesn’t eliminate impeachment as a future possibility though, instead of saying that there might be a time where the facts take us down that path, then we would ‘have no choice.”

Fellows members of her party seemed to disagree, most of them being members of Congress on the campaign trail. For example, Massachusetts Senator, Elizabeth Warren, has countered to Speaker Pelosi’s wary explanation that it wasn’t the right time to explore this path of impeachment. In a CNN town hall, held in New Hampshire, Senator Warren stated, “There is no political inconvenience exception in the United States Constitution.” She also added on later, further explaining her reasoning with the statement that “if any other human being in this country had done what’s documented in the Mueller report, they would be arrested and put in jail.” Many of her party members agreeing, basing their arguments on the fact that the president, like everyone else, isn’t immune from the law.

Many things, from how Trump tried to get Muller fired through Don McGahn to how he fired Jeff Sessions primarily due to the fact that Sessions wouldn’t un-recuse himself from the Muller investigation, are in Congress’s hands. It’s just up to Congress on how they chose to wield that power.