After almost two years and 176 presidential tweets about the “witch hunt,” the Special Counsel investigation is finally complete. Now that it’s over, the full report should be released to the public.

On May 9, 2017, President Donald Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, who was in the middle of investigating the president. Eight days later, Deputy Attorney General Rob Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller, a Republican and former FBI director, to head a special counsel investigation and pick up where Comey left off.

The investigation had three purposes: to find the extent of Russia’s interference in the 2016 Presidential Election, to find out if there was any collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign and to see if Donald Trump obstructed justice.

On March 22, 2019, Robert Mueller submitted a 400-page report of their findings to the Justice Department. Two days later, Attorney General William Barr sent a four-page letter to Congress summarizing the report. 

Barr said Russia tried influencing the presidential election in two ways: disinformation and social media campaigns and computer hacking which strategically released emails from the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

Leah Day

Thirty-four people and three Russian organizations were indicted by Mueller. Most of the charges were either for conspiracy against the United States, lying or obstructing justice or some kind of tax fraud. 

Of the 34 people indicted, seven were Americans: former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort, his associate Rick Gates, former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen, political consultant Roger Stone, former member of the Trump campaign’s foreign policy advisory panel George Papadopoulos and a fake ID salesman named Richard Pinedo.

According to Mueller’s report, the special counsel “did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.” Basically, he says the president and his campaign did not collude with Russia. But they could not reach a conclusion on the question of obstruction of justice, saying that “while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” Barr and Rosenstein concluded there was not enough evidence to convict the president of obstruction of justice. 

After having Barr’s summary further summarized for him, the president tweeted, “No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!” 

The full report must be released. 

The president is not totally exonerated. In fact, the report specifically says he isn’t. Barr and Rosenstein were appointed by Trump, it is not their job to reach these conclusions.

The full report must be released.

Public officials work for us — the public. We elected Donald Trump. We pay his salary. We paid for this investigation. We deserve to see the evidence and the findings ourselves. 

The full report must be released.

Barr’s four-page summary did not answer important questions and raised a million new ones. Why did the president lie about the Trump Tower meeting? Why did he say Russia didn’t meddle in the election? Why did so many people connected to him lie to the FBI and Congress? Why wasn’t Trump interviewed by the special counsel? Why didn’t they draw a conclusion on obstruction? What evidence do they have?

The full report must be released.

Transparency is key in any democratic government. The House of Representatives unanimously voted to release the report. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell won’t let it come to a vote in the Senate. What is there to hide?

The full report must be released.