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Trump’s lawyers got to see the Mueller report before Congress or the public

Stunning.

President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani on February 13, 2019. He got to see special counsel Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia report before Congress or the public.
President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani on February 13, 2019. He got to see special counsel Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia report before Congress or the public.
Siavosh Hosseini/NurPhoto via Getty Images

President Donald Trump’s personal lawyers and White House attorneys were given a partially redacted version of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report to review before Congress or the public got a chance to see it.

That’s according to Attorney General William Barr, who gave a press conference Thursday morning, several hours before the planned release of the public version of Mueller’s report.

“Earlier this week, the president’s personal counsel requested and was given the opportunity to read a final version of the redacted report before it was publicly released,” Barr said.

“That request was consistent with the practice followed under the Ethics in Government Act which permitted individuals named in a report prepared by an independent counsel the opportunity to read. They were not permitted to make and did not request any redactions,” he continued.

The president didn’t invoke executive privilege to redact any part of the report, the attorney general also noted.

This is all stunning. Mueller spent nearly two years looking into whether Trump or any of his campaign officials or associates colluded with Russia to win the 2016 presidential election. He also looked into whether Trump himself tried to obstruct justice as the probe proceeded.

For Trump’s lawyers to see the report before anyone else, including Congress, only adds to suspicions that Barr is taking great pains to mollify Trump throughout this process. His performance during the press conference may add to those suspicions still.

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