“I have not read the Mueller Report yet, even though I have every right to do so,” he asserted, adding that he only knows the conclusions, which he said include “No Collusion” and “No Obstruction” of justice.
Trump appointee Attorney General William Barr has not revealed the report to the president yet.
Last month, Barr released his summary of Mueller’s nearly 400-page report to Congress, informing lawmakers that the probe did not find evidence to establish that the president’s 2016 campaign engaged in a conspiracy with Russia and that it didn’t reach a conclusion about whether Trump obstructed justice. It was not, however, the total exoneration Trump claims.
Though Barr said in March that Trump “would have the right to assert privilege over certain parts of the report,” he noted that the president has “stated publicly that he intends to defer to me and, accordingly, there are no plans to submit the report to the White House for a privilege review.”
On Wednesday, both The New York Times and The Washington Post reported that members of Mueller’s investigative team were irked by Barr’s portrayal of the report, some claiming there was significant evidence regarding obstruction, and that the attorney general downplayed damaging information.
According to the Post, some investigators had even prepared individual summaries concerning each part of the report with the hope that they’d be made public and were frustrated to learn that wouldn’t be the case.
On Thursday, Barr defended his handling of the report, using grand jury secrecy rules to reason that it couldn’t be immediately released because it contains sensitive information.
It is expected that Barr will release the report later this month with redactions.
The House Judiciary Committee voted to authorize a subpoena for the full report on Wednesday, which may present a challenge to Barr and the Justice Department.