Attorney General William Barr has the Mueller report. We don’t yet know what he’s planning to do with it, but his four-paragraph letter seems to imply things beyond what the words say. It is written in standard legal language, which can sometimes make things difficult to fully understand. He frequently refers to the “regulations of the Special Counsel” followed by the applicable statute which governs such regulations. This means that Barr is following the rule of law, which many of us hoped and prayed he would do.
First, Barr advises us that no actions proposed by the Special Counsel were “unwarranted or inappropriate” to the point where Barr would have denied such requests. As Palmer Report pointed out earlier, everything Mueller requested was allowed to proceed. Barr follows that by quoting the applicable statute governing such requests, approvals, and denials. As Barr says in the letter, “There were no such instances in the Special Counsel’s investigation.” So much for Trump’s “witch hunt.” Barr just confirmed that the investigation was completely above board and solid.
One of the more interesting parts of Barr’s letter is his statement that he will be meeting with Rosenstein and Mueller to determine what portions of the report can be made public. This is a good thing. If Barr were planning to bury this report, he certainly wouldn’t consult with Rosenstein and Mueller about any of it, let alone seek their approval as to what can be made public knowledge. Again, Barr is following the rule of the law.
Barr may yet surprise us. His record indicated that he, like John Roberts, relies on the Constitution in making decisions and rulings. Again, this is a good thing. Take Rudy Guilani for example, he does pretty much nothing to stay in line with the laws and regulations governing his public behavior. He has been leaking to the press when it suits him and Trump, and he lies as much as, if not more than, Trump. Barr doesn’t appear to have these issues.
We don’t know what Barr is thinking, but we do know that he’s following the law thus far. As long as he follows the law and is sincere in his pledge to “remain committed to as much transparency as possible,” we may yet see the best parts of Mueller’s report. It all depends on whether anyone has been accused of some behaviors or actions that have not yet reached the level of indictment. Those behaviors or actions will require additional investigation, and that is the type of information that will remain secret – for now. Let us also not forget that sealed indictments could well be unsealed in the coming days as they relate to this report. Stay tuned.
Shirley is a former entertainment writer and has worked in the legal field for over 25 years