For Immediate Release
David Vance, (202)736-5712, firstname.lastname@example.org
Americans Deserve Better Than A.G. Barr’s Attempt to Whitewash & Black-Out Mueller Report on Russian Attacks
Statement of Common Cause President Karen Hobert Flynn
WASHINGTON - Americans deserve better than a second attempt by Attorney General William Barr to whitewash the findings of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the Russian attacks on the 2016 presidential election and subsequent attempts to obstruct the investigation through a so-called press conference before Congress, the press and the American people have seen even a page of the report. It is absolutely reprehensible that Barr and his underlings have already conducted multiple briefings to White House officials. The A.G. is behaving more like a White House aide attempting to do damage control than the nation’s top law enforcement official.
This is not how a democracy works. The Department of Justice cannot serve as apologists for anyone, let alone someone who holds the office of the President of the United States. Congress is a coequal branch of government and must be given every word of the Mueller report. There are checks and balances in our Constitution that cannot be ignored due to political or personal fealty.
The American people expect and deserve to know the whole truth about the Russian attacks on the 2016 presidential election, and they need to hear directly from Special Counsel Robert Mueller in open congressional hearings. The anticipated heavily redacted report has the distinct look of a whitewash. Congress must be given the full report and Congress must determine what needs to be redacted. Those determinations should not be made by a Trump apologist like William Barr who openly criticized the Mueller investigation prior to his appointment as Attorney General.
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Congress must hear again from Attorney General Barr in public hearings – after Members have seen the full report – to demand answers for the amount of information on the Russian attacks and obstruction of justice that he has chosen to hide from the American people. Further, Congress must demand answers for the Attorney General’s handling of the Special Counsel’s investigation and final report which he should have recused himself from in the first place due to his clear conflicts.
Despite the ‘see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil’ spin from the Attorney General, we cannot overlook the fact that the investigation has already led to 199 criminal charges, 37 indictments or guilty pleas, and 5 prison sentences. And there are more shoes to drop from numerous additional investigations of possible criminal conduct uncovered by the Special Counsel that have been handed off to other prosecutors. But just the crimes that have already been made public are breathtaking and unprecedented in our nation’s history.
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Common Cause is a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy organization founded in 1970 by John Gardner as a vehicle for citizens to make their voices heard in the political process and to hold their elected leaders accountable to the public interest.