- The 18 Democratic candidates vying to take on President Donald Trump in 2020 are reacting strongly to special counsel Robert Mueller’s report — and Attorney General William Barr’s framing of the findings.
- The 448-page report said Mueller’s team didn’t find sufficient evidence to bring a charge of conspiracy against anyone involved in the Trump campaign and did not come to a "traditional prosecutorial decision" as to whether Trump had committed obstruction of justice.
- While 2020 Democrats are unlikely to make Trump-Russia investigations a major campaign issue, the report will likely serve as campaign-trail fodder for the Democrats hoping to defeat Trump.
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The 18 Democratic candidates vying to take on President Donald Trump in 2020 are reacting strongly to special counsel Robert Mueller’s report — and to Attorney General William Barr’s framing of Mueller’s findings.
During the 2018 midterms, Democratic candidates running for Congress mainly focused their messaging around issues like health care, taxes, and education — deferring on taking a stance on whether Trump should be impeached until after seeing the report.
Inthe 448-page report, released Thursday, the special counsel team said they did not find sufficient evidence to bring a charge of conspiracy against anyone involved in the Trump campaign for illegally coordinating with Russia to influence the 2016 US election.
The report also said that while Mueller’s team did not make a "traditional prosecutorial judgment" as to whether Trump obstructed the Mueller probe itself and other federal investigations involving him, they could not "exonerate" him on allegations of obstruction of justice.
Mueller’s report detailed 11 separate instances they examined for possible obstruction of justice — but said that by not executing his wishes, Trump’s own aides and advisers stopped him from possibly committing more clear-cut obstruction.
By all accounts, 2020 Democrats are still unlikely to center their campaign messages around the Trump-Russia investigations.
But the report’s murky conclusions on obstruction — and their conclusion that the Trump campaign believed they would benefit from Russian interference in the 2016 election — will likely serve as campaign-trail fodder for the Democrats hoping to defeat Trump in 2020.
Here are the presidential candidates who have weighed in so far on the Mueller report, and what they’ve said:
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders wrote, "It is clear that Donald Trump wanted nothing more than to shut down the Mueller investigation. While we have more detail from today’s report than before, Congress must continue its investigation into Trump’s conduct and any foreign attempts to influence our election."
Source: Bernie Sanders/Twitter
Sen. Kamala Harris, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said: "Congress needs to see the full, unredacted Mueller report and all of the investigation’s underlying evidence — and Special Counsel Robert Mueller must testify publicly before Congress."
AP Photo/John Locher
Source: Kamala Harris/Twitter
Sen. Cory Booker, also a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said: "The American people deserve the truth. Not spin from a Trump appointee. Release Mueller’s full report now."
Source: Cory Booker/Twitter
- Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions carried around a resignation letter in his pocket for a year, according to Mueller’s report
- Hope Hicks warned Trump that Don Jr.’s emails setting up the Trump Tower meeting were ‘really bad,’ but the president told her not to go to the press
- Mueller report says Trump campaign figures hindered the investigation when they ‘deleted relevant information’