The Mueller Team Champions Truth and Outplays William Barr

“Mr. Barr and his advisers have expressed their own frustrations about Mr. Mueller and his team. Mr. Barr and other Justice Department officials believe the special counsel’s investigators fell short of their task by declining to decide whether Mr. Trump illegally obstructed the inquiry, according to the two government officials. After Mr. Mueller made no judgment on the obstruction matter, Mr. Barr stepped in to declare that he himself had cleared Mr. Trump of wrongdoing.”
New York Times

Investigators from the special counsel’s office have indicated that that Barr’s four-page summary of the Mueller Report “failed to adequately portray the findings of their inquiry and that they were more troubling for President Trump than Mr. Barr indicated.”

This has led to reports that Attorney General Barr is frustrated that Mueller left the decision on obstruction of justice charges to him. He should be frustrated, because his ongoing attempts to hide the most damaging evidence—something he promised Trump he would do—are being thwarted. He got played.

Here’s how it works. Mueller knew that if he determined the issue, whatever he said would be dismissed. He also knew that there was plenty of evidence that might support indicting Trump or at least naming him as an unindicted co-conspirator.

So he put Barr in a no-win situation. If Barr admitted that there was substantial negative evidence, even if not enough to indict, he would hurt Trump. If Barr downplayed it and aggressively tried to cover up the evidence, and the evidence came out—as, after much wrangling, it will—Barr would look like he was taking part in a cover-up. Which he may be.

See Lesson for Trump Attorneys: The Lawyers of Watergate:

“Congress initiated multiple investigations that exposed the involvement of more than 20 of the most powerful lawyers in the United States.

At the top of the list was Nixon, the 37th president of the United States, who resigned on Aug. 8, 1974, as Congress was gearing up to conduct impeachment proceedings.

But the list also included two U.S. attorneys general, two White House counsels, an assistant attorney general and a chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.”