WASHINGTON – House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler said Friday that he will call Special Counsel Robert Mueller to testify before Congress, explaining that television viewers needed to see it, as most Americans didn’t read the full Mueller report on his Russia probe.
“We will have Mr. Mueller’s testimony,” Nadler said on WNYC radio “ I think it’s very important that he testify before the American people, even if he doesn’t say anything beyond what was said there,” the Manhattan Democrat said..
Nadler accused both President Trump and Attorney General William Barr with “lying all the time” about the contents of the report and said Mueller needed to answer questions “to a television audience and to the American people.”
“Most people are not going to read the 448 page report,” Nadler added.
Mueller made his first public statement Wednesday about the Russia investigation – and asked that it be his last, saying he preferred not to testify before Congress because he wouldn’t have anything else to add beyond the contents of the report.
Muller said Russia operatives acted to aid Trump by hacking Hillary Clinton’s campaign in the 2016 election.
But he concluded, “there was insufficient evidence to charge a broader conspiracy,” involving Trump or his 2016 campaign.
But the special counsel emphasized that his report did not clear the president of obstruction — as Trump had repeatedly repeatedly claim, and as Attorney General William Bar also included after releasing the Mueller report.
Muller suggested Congress would have to pursue impeachment proceedings to continue the case against Trump.
During the course of the radio interview, Nadler also previewed some of the Democrats’ next steps, including against White House officials who have stonewalled requests to testify.
“We are going to enforce those subpoenas and we’re going to have on the floor as soon as possible, I hope very shortly, contempt citations against these people and we will pursue them in court,” Nadler said.
For example, Nadler’s committee previously voted to hold Barr in contempt of Congress, but it hasn’t received a full House vote.
Nadler also said he believed that Americans weren’t on board with impeaching Trump yet, cautioning those Democrats who are ready to wholeheartedly pursue it.
“Impeachment is a political act and you cannot impeach a president if the American people will not support it,” Nadler said. “The American people right now do not support it because they don’t know the story. They don’t know the facts.”
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