Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Consider This – the Barr Summary

Last week the nation was abuzz with speculation and supposition about the 22-month investigation which Special Counsel Robert Mueller submitted to the Justice Department – a reportedly 300-plus page report detailing the findings. After barely two days, Attorney General William Barr proffered a four-page summary of the report, which prompted Trump to decry the whole process (once again) as nothing but a “witch hunt” and claiming full vindication and exoneration of any charges of collusion, conspiracy, or obstruction. 

Since the submission of the report to the Attorney General’s office, there have been rumors and speculation as to the actual contents of those results, with demands by Congress and the Senate originally wanting the full report to be released (and subsequently the Senate has backed off of the request, while the Democratic-held Congress is still wanting to see every page). Congress gave Barr the deadline of April 2ndto release the report, but Barr has stalled, saying the report will need to be reviewed and redacted before anything can be released to the public.

Barr’s appointment came quickly after the resignation of the prior AG, Jeff Sessions. As with nearly all things relating to the Trump regime, rumors about Sessions’ departure range from voluntary to forced out by Trump just after the mid-term elections. Barr comes in as an experienced Attorney General, having held the post in 1991-1993 under George H.W. Bush and into the start of the Clinton tenure. At the start of the Trump presidency, Barr had written op-ed articles which were against the investigation into possible collusion and other criminal activities by Trump, his family and followers. Just prior to taking over as AG, Barr expressed a desire to maintain transparency of the report’s findings – but has since been slow in the execution of this transparency.

Consider this – where can we go from here?

While Mueller did not find substantial evidence of conspiracy or collusion, his report – according to the Barr Summary – does not exonerate Trump or his entourage of obstruction of justice. There could very well be evidence which might indicate attempts of this charge, but Mueller perhaps did not feel there was enough to formally charge anyone at the time of the submission, instead (presumably) he left this decision for the AG and Congress.

We can’t really go anywhere yet. While AG Barr claims the report basically clears Trump, even his summary leaves enough questions that demand answers. With his stalling to release any of the details Congress (and the People) are demanding, it only raises more questions – what is going to be redacted as judicially classified or sensitive? What evidence did Mueller uncover about anyone related to the Trump campaign or consequent executive branch members? 

So what can we do? Keep pressuring our elected representatives, maintain the protests on social media, and be as patient as possible. We doknow that the Russians attempted to interfere with the elections – that has been confirmed by our Intelligence agencies. 
Can our legislatures get back to their job of running the country? We can only hope. There is still the question of healthcare, and the Green New Deal program the incoming Dems have established as their current game plan. Trump has been against any eco-friendly programs, rolling back a lot of regulations and other systems promoting alternative energy and other clean- or reusable-energy programs. And there is still the ongoing question of updated gun laws and other prevention measures. The list goes on, and much of it will not be addressed any time soon.

But we need to keep active in local and national-level government. Make sure our voices are heard, engage in civil discourse to share ideas and hope that solutions can be resolved to truly make America a better place.

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