William Barr broke MSNBC enthusiasts’ hearts last month when he released a summary of the long-anticipated Mueller report that was essentially a slip of paper emblazoned with the words “DONALD TRUMP INNOCENT.” And yet, the release of the redacted report confirmed that Trump is likely not innocent (of obstruction of justice, at least), and is definitely a whiny, petty little baby man. Like those aforementioned MSNBC enthusiasts, Mueller reportedly does not care for Barr’s shoddy interpretation of his work.
According to the Washington Post, shortly after the release of Barr’s summary, Mueller wrote Barr a letter complaining that he “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance” of the report. Barr, for the record, reduced Mueller’s painstaking 448-page report to a four-page summary concluding NO COLLUSION, prompting Trump to declare the report afforded him “Complete and Total EXONERATION!”
The real report did no such thing, which it seems Mueller pointed out to Barr both in his letter and in a subsequent 15-minute phone call during which he urged Barr to release the full report. Mueller was reportedly worried Barr’s summary would confuse people about the outcome of the obstruction investigation. It certainly confused at least one person!
Here’s some of Mueller’s letter (emphasis mine):
“The summary letter the Department sent to Congress and released to the public late in the afternoon of March 24 did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance of this office’s work and conclusions,” Mueller wrote. “There is now public confusion about critical aspects of the results of our investigation. 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.”
A Justice Department spokesperson claimed to the New York Times that Mueller said in his letter and phone call that Barr’s summary wasn’t “inaccurate or misleading,” but that Mueller “expressed frustration over the lack of context and the resulting media coverage regarding the special counsel’s obstruction analysis,” not that one should trust the Justice Department to portray anything correctly at this point.
Now we have all the facts, drama, grifter Twitter threads, and fun stories about the President doing Godfather cosplay, but dumber. Barr is scheduled to testify in front of Congress on May 1 and 2, and Democrats are asking to see a copy of the Mueller letter in advance. They still probably won’t bother to impeach Trump.