Robert Mueller Complained To A.G. William Barr That His Summary Mischaracterized Special Counsel’s Findings
Special Counsel Robert Mueller wrote a letter to Attorney General William Barr in March. In his letter, Mueller discussed how Barr’s four-page summary did not faithfully represent the special counsel’s findings. Barr obtained the letter on March 27, merely three days after he publicly issued his interpretation of the Mueller report.
In his letter, Mueller claimed Barr’s interpretation “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance” of the Russia investigation, adding how there was “public confusion about critical aspects of the results of [their] investigation.” Notably, other investigators who worked alongside Mueller had previously echoed this sentiment.
“This threatens to undermine a central purpose for which the Department appointed the Special Counsel: to assure full public confidence in the outcome of the investigations,” Mueller concluded.
Kerri Kupec, a Justice Department spokeswomen, said Barr called Mueller after reading his letter to discuss it with him. “The Special Counsel emphasized that nothing in the Attorney General’s March 24 letter was inaccurate or misleading,” Kupec said in a statement. “But, he expressed frustration over the lack of context and the resulting media coverage regarding the Special Counsel’s obstruction analysis. They then discussed whether additional context from the report would be helpful and could be quickly released. However, the Attorney General ultimately determined that it would not be productive to release the report in piecemeal fashion.”
“The Attorney General and the Special Counsel agreed to get the full report out with necessary redactions as expeditiously as possible,” Kupec continued. “The next day, the Attorney General sent a letter to Congress reiterating that his March 24 letter was not intended to be a summary of the report, but instead only stated the Special Counsel’s principal conclusions, and volunteered to testify before both Senate and House Judiciary Committees on May 1st and 2nd.”