Robert De Niro penned an open letter to special counsel Robert Mueller in The New York Times on Wednesday asking Mueller to testify before Congress about the Russia probe because the “country needs to hear your voice.”
“In your news conference, you said that your investigation’s work ‘speaks for itself.’ It doesn’t. It may speak for itself to lawyers and lawmakers who have the patience and obligation to read through the more than 400 pages of carefully chosen words and nuanced conclusions (with all due respect, as good a read as it is, you’re no Stephen King),” wrote De Niro in the letter, titled “Robert Mueller, We Need to Hear More.”
The actor, who has frequently portrayed Mueller on “Saturday Night Live,” implored the lawyer ― who never wavered in his investigation despite Trump’s criticism ― to testify before Congress to avoid Trump controlling the narrative surrounding the results of his report.
“While I and so many Americans have admired your quiet, confident, dignified response in ignoring that assault, it allowed the administration to use its own voice to control the narrative. And those voices are so loud and so persistent that they beat even reasonable people into submission. The loudest, most persistent voice belongs to the president himself, and under most circumstances, we want to believe our president,” wrote De Niro.
“Your life has been a shining example of bravely and selflessly doing things for the good of our country. I urge you to leave your comfort zone and do that again,” he added.
Earlier on Wednesday, Mueller told Americans to read his report on whether Russia interfered with the 2016 election and reiterated that while Trump could not be charged with a crime while in office, he hasn’t been exonerated.
“If we had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said that,” Mueller said at a press conference at Justice Department headquarters in which he also announced his resignation. “A president cannot be charged with a federal crime while he is in office. That is unconstitutional. ... Charging the president with a crime was therefore not an option we could consider.”
Mueller also said his office was “guided by principles of fairness” and that it “would be unfair to potentially accuse somebody of a crime when there can be no court resolution of an actual charge.” He later added that his office would “not comment on any other conclusions or hypotheticals about the president.”