On February 22, the chairs of six committees in the U.S. House of Representatives wrote a letter to Attorney General William Barr to inform him of their expectation that he will make Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report public “without delay.”
Today, after the Department of Justice informed Congress that Special Counsel Mueller had submitted his final report to Attorney General Barr, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Committee on Oversight and Reform Chairman Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD), Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Adam B. Schiff (D-CA), Committee on Financial Services Chairwoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Committee on Ways and Means Chairman Richard E. Neal (D-MA), and Committee on Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot L. Engel (D-NY), released the following joint statement:
“After nearly two years of investigation — accompanied by two years of unprecedented attacks on the integrity of the investigation by President Trump — the public and Congress are entitled to know what the Special Counsel has found. Reflecting the will of the American people, the House of Representatives voted 420-0 last week for the full release of the Special Counsel’s report to Congress and the American people. Earlier this week, President Trump himself endorsed making the report available to the public.
“The Justice Department must now release to the public the entire report submitted by Special Counsel Mueller to the Attorney General. This report is required under the Special Counsel regulations, and we expect the Attorney General to release it without delay given the profound public interest in the full disclosure of information learned by the Special Counsel. Consistent with the Justice Department’s past practice and to ensure Congress can discharge its constitutional responsibilities, we also expect the underlying evidence uncovered during the course of the Special Counsel’s investigation will be turned over to the relevant Committees of Congress upon request.
“To be clear, if the Special Counsel has reason to believe that the President has engaged in criminal or other serious misconduct, then the Justice Department has an obligation not to conceal such information. The President must be subject to accountability and if the Justice Department is unable to do so, then the need to provide Congress with the relevant information is paramount. Because the Justice Department maintains that a sitting president cannot be indicted, to then withhold evidence of wrongdoing from Congress because a sitting President cannot be charged is to convert Justice Department policy into the means for a cover-up. Anything less than full transparency would raise serious questions about whether the Department of Justice policy is being used as a pretext for a cover-up of misconduct.
“The President is not above the law and the need for public faith in our democratic institutions and the rule of law must be the priority.”