Mueller just handed Republicans a gift

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CNN's Sara Murray reports.

Posted: Jul 24, 2019 6:50 PM
Updated: Jul 24, 2019 6:50 PM

Democrats fell all over themselves at Wednesday's televised House hearings to thank the former special counsel Robert Mueller -- deservedly -- for his service as a decorated Marine, a career public servant and a patriot, while Republicans impugned his integrity and that of his investigation and his team.

Although Mueller showed loyalty to his team, he did not show loyalty to his country. Whether he was cognitively impaired (as he seemed not to know the names or positions of some of his key witnesses, notably the former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski) or had simply misplaced his spine, he appeared to be lost. Why the man who showed such courage on the battlefield showed such timidity and hesitation Wednesday, requiring members of Congress to read him a bedtime story because he would not even read his own words aloud, is unclear.

Americans needed a definitive, plain-language, nonlegalistic statement from Mueller about one and only one question: Did the President and his henchmen and women commit a crime?

Did his participation in the dissemination of information from emails stolen by Russians and leaked by Wikileaks, with Trump's encouragement, violate campaign laws? Or was it treason, namely helping a hostile foreign power -- our chief adversary over 70 years -- attack our bedrock democratic institution, elections? Did Trump commit any of the 10 counts of obstruction Mueller laid out in his report to cover up those or any other crimes? And did he commit any other felonies, such as witness intimidation, as he had clearly indicated in the report?

If the answer to any of those questions had been an unequivocal yes, the House would have been required under the Constitution to hold impeachment hearings. If the answer were indeterminate, the House might still hold hearings to question the witnesses themselves, so it could decide, as the public watched, whether this was a "witch hunt" or a legitimate investigation. If the answer were no, Democrats might disagree, but they would better spend their time electing a Democrat in 2020.

Instead of answering any of the questions we Americans had hired him to answer, Mueller pleaded "no contest." This was not a "neutral" political move. It provided Republicans good reason to argue that the investigation was a two-year, multimillion-dollar waste of time.

Sure, his investigation put a half-dozen other people in prison for one crime or another, but Mueller chose to immunize the person who may well be the fulcrum for those crimes, allowing him to remain in the highest position in the land without a trial.

And sure, other state and federal prosecutors may ultimately indict Trump, in or out of office, or perhaps, like Nixon, he will face a reckoning a year or two after he is re-elected.

But as a taxpaying Democrat, as of this moment, I have to agree with Republicans that this was a waste of my time and money -- not, as they would argue, because the Mueller report made no determination about "collusion" or obstruction. It was a waste of time and money because we hired a prosecutor who, after agreeing to serve his country one last time, chose to go missing in action.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 32888

Reported Deaths: 1188
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds259141
DeSoto172418
Madison132635
Jones114049
Neshoba100473
Rankin98213
Harrison96911
Lauderdale92280
Forrest91643
Scott77915
Jackson68917
Copiah62015
Washington61710
Leake58919
Lee56220
Holmes56041
Oktibbeha55227
Wayne54515
Warren53218
Yazoo5236
Lowndes50913
Grenada5067
Leflore50053
Lamar4917
Lincoln48434
Pike45416
Monroe42534
Sunflower4208
Lafayette4094
Covington3755
Attala36523
Panola3646
Bolivar35618
Newton3479
Simpson3453
Adams31518
Tate31011
Pontotoc3046
Marion30012
Chickasaw28719
Claiborne28410
Winston2808
Noxubee2728
Jasper2676
Pearl River26532
Marshall2583
Clay24911
Smith22911
Union21810
Clarke21025
Coahoma2056
Walthall2056
Lawrence1872
Yalobusha1807
Kemper17914
Carroll16811
Humphreys1569
Tallahatchie1454
Calhoun1414
Montgomery1392
Tippah13811
Itawamba1378
Hancock13413
Webster12711
Jefferson Davis1134
Tunica1133
Jefferson1103
Prentiss1103
Greene1059
Amite1043
Wilkinson939
George913
Tishomingo891
Quitman811
Choctaw754
Alcorn742
Perry724
Stone692
Franklin452
Benton420
Sharkey370
Issaquena101
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 46424

Reported Deaths: 1032
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson5486155
Montgomery4246105
Mobile4219136
Tuscaloosa234644
Marshall177011
Madison15548
Lee143337
Shelby135724
Morgan11285
Walker98525
Baldwin9809
Elmore96215
Dallas9109
Franklin90216
Etowah79013
DeKalb7615
Chambers64327
Autauga63612
Butler63228
Tallapoosa60469
Russell5680
Unassigned52226
Limestone5181
Houston5106
Lauderdale5016
Lowndes47821
Cullman4705
Pike4525
Colbert4266
St. Clair4162
Escambia4118
Calhoun3875
Coffee3863
Covington3727
Bullock36810
Barbour3572
Talladega3237
Marengo31711
Hale31521
Dale3020
Jackson3022
Wilcox2948
Sumter28512
Clarke2836
Winston2663
Chilton2622
Blount2511
Monroe2412
Pickens2386
Marion23613
Conecuh2177
Randolph2169
Macon1999
Choctaw19712
Bibb1961
Greene1868
Perry1791
Henry1363
Crenshaw1253
Washington1187
Lawrence1090
Cherokee1037
Geneva840
Lamar801
Fayette721
Clay692
Coosa591
Cleburne391
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