Donald Trump will not be charged with any crimes by special counsel Robert Mueller, despite Mueller’s saying his investigation ‘does not exonerate’ the president.
A letter sharing the Mueller report’s conclusions was given Congress by Attorney General William Barr Sunday. It said there was sufficient evidence to accuse President Trump of obstructing justice, amid claims he interfered with criminal investigations by frequently attacking attempts to probe allegations against him.
The summary added that there was no evidence Trump or anyone in his administration had colluded with Russia to rig the 2016 presidential election campaign that Trump ultimately won. Afterwards, the President tweeted a contradictory reading of the summary, saying: ‘No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!’
Boarding Air Force One in West Palm Beach, Florida shortly after, Trump told reporters: ‘A lot of horrible things happened…for our country.
‘There was no collusion…no obstruction. It’s a shame that your president had to go through this…this was an illegal takedown that failed.’
He spoke an hour after the publication of Barr’s summary of Mueller’s findings, which stated: ‘While this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.’
Mueller, who began investigating the President in May 2017, and concluded his probe Friday, said that the evidence he had gathered ‘is not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction of justice offense.’
The special counsel said his decision had not been swayed by ‘constitutional considerations’ over whether or not it was possible to indict or prosecute a sitting president.
Mueller said his report had ‘described the facts’ of the obstruction allegations ‘without reaching any legal conclusions’.
He added that it ‘leaves it to the Attorney General to determine whether the conduct described in the report constitutes a crime.’
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said Mueller’s report ‘are a complete and total exoneration of the President of the United States’ on obstruction and collusion claims.
But House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler, who was first to share the summary, highlighted how Mueller ‘explicitly is not exonerating the president.’
He has now called on Attorney General Barr to explain his decision not to charge President Trump with a crime, ‘and see all the underlying evidence for the American people to know all the facts.’
On allegations of collusion with Russia, the special counsel concluded that there was no evidence that the president or anyone in his campaign conspired to rig the 2016 presidential election.
It also cleared the Republican president and his aides of colluding with Russia’s hacking of their rival Democrat party’s computer servers to obtain damaging information which could be shared online.
Mueller wrote: ‘The evidence does not establish that the President was involved in an underlying crime related to Russian election interference.’
The summary conclusions of Mueller’s investigation into Russian collusion during the 2016 presidential campaign were sent to Congress by US Attorney General William Barr Sunday.
Barr received the confidential report Friday night, just as President Trump arrived at his Florida country club Mar-a-Lago for a summit with Caribbean leaders. US Democrats are now set to push for the entire report to be made public, with President Trump himself saying he is happy for it to be shared in its entirety.
The findings were shared hours after Trump issued two upbeat tweets Sunday morning, writing: ‘Good Morning, Have A Great Day!’
He later parroted his election slogan ‘MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!’ A White House spokesman said he spent Sunday golfing with friends including Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.
After Mueller’s report was handed in Friday, a Department of Justice spokesman said the special counsel had no plans to indict anyone else.
Trump had long denied allegations he knew anything about Russian collusion, and has repeatedly branded Mueller’s probe a ‘witch hunt.’
But despite the president’s criticism of Mueller, the special counsel’s probe has brought criminal charges against 34 people and three companies linked to his administration.
Six people close to Trump were among those charged with various crimes, with five of those individuals convicted or facing charges.
They include the president’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen, campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and national security adviser Michael Flynn.