Posted in NEWS OF INTEREST, POLITICS

Full Transcript of Mueller’s Statement on Russia Investigation

The special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, made his first public comments about the Russia investigation.

By The New York Times

  • The following is a transcript of his remarks, as prepared by The New York Times.

ROBERT S. MUELLER III, the special counsel: Good morning, everyone, and thank you for being here. Two years ago, the acting attorney general asked me to serve as special counsel and he created the special counsel’s office. The appointment order directed the office to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. This included investigating any links or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the Trump campaign.

Now, I have not spoken publicly during our investigation. I am speaking out today because our investigation is complete. The attorney general has made the report on our investigation largely public. We are formally closing the special counsel’s office, and as well, I’m resigning from the Department of Justice to return to private life. I’ll make a few remarks about the results of our work. But beyond these few remarks, it is important that the office’s written work speak for itself. Let me begin where the appointment order begins, and that is interference in the 2016 presidential election.

As alleged by the grand jury in an indictment, Russian intelligence officers who are part of the Russian military, launched a concerted attack on our political system. The indictment alleges that they used sophisticated cybertechniques to hack into computers and networks used by the Clinton campaign. They stole private information and then released that information through fake online identities and through the organization WikiLeaks.

The releases were designed and timed to interfere with our election and to damage a presidential candidate. And at the same time, as the grand jury alleged in a separate indictment, a private Russian entity engaged in a social media operation, where Russian citizens posed as Americans in order to influence an election. These indictments contain allegations, and we are not commenting on the guilt or the innocence of any specific defendant. Every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The indictments allege, and the other activities in our report describe, efforts to interfere in our political system. They needed to be investigated and understood. And that is among the reasons why the Department of Justice established our office. That is also a reason we investigated efforts to obstruct the investigation. The matters we investigated were of paramount importance. It was critical for us to obtain full and accurate information from every person we questioned. When a subject of an investigation obstructs that investigation or lies to investigators, it strikes at the core of their government’s effort to find the truth and hold wrongdoers accountable.

Let me say a word about the report. The report has two parts, addressing the two main issues we were asked to investigate. The first volume of the report details numerous efforts emanating from Russia to influence the election. This volume includes a discussion of the Trump campaign’s response to this activity, as well as our conclusion that there was insufficient evidence to charge a broader conspiracy. And in the second volume, the report describes the results and analysis of our obstruction of justice investigation involving the president.

The order appointing me special counsel authorized us to investigate actions that could obstruct the investigation. We conducted that investigation, and we kept the office of the acting attorney general apprised of the progress of our work. And as set forth in the report, after that investigation, if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so. We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime.

The introduction to the Volume II of our report explains that decision. It explains that under longstanding department policy, a president cannot be charged with a federal crime while he is in office. That is unconstitutional. Even if the charge is kept under seal and hidden from public view, that, too, is prohibited. A special counsel’s office is part of the Department of Justice, and by regulation, it was bound by that department policy. Charging the president with a crime was therefore not an option we could consider. The department’s written opinion explaining the policy makes several important points that further informed our handling of the obstruction investigation. Those points are summarized in our report, and I will describe two of them for you.

First, the opinion explicitly permits the investigation of a sitting president, because it is important to preserve evidence while memories are fresh and documents available. Among other things, that evidence could be used if there were co-conspirators who could be charged now.

And second, the opinion says that the Constitution requires a process other than the criminal justice system to formally accuse a sitting president of wrongdoing. And beyond department policy, we were guided by principles of fairness. It would be unfair to potentially — it would be unfair to potentially accuse somebody of a crime when there can be no court resolution of the actual charge.

So that was Justice Department policy. Those were the principles under which we operated. And from them, we concluded that we would not reach a determination one way or the other about whether the president committed a crime. That is the office’s final position, and we will not comment on any other conclusions or hypotheticals about the president. We conducted an independent criminal investigation and reported the results to the attorney general, as required by department regulations.

The attorney general then concluded that it was appropriate to provide our report to Congress and to the American people. At one point in time, I requested that certain portions of the report be released and the attorney general preferred to make — preferred to make the entire report public all at once and we appreciate that the attorney general made the report largely public. And I certainly do not question the attorney general’s good faith in that decision.

Now, I hope and expect this to be the only time that I will speak to you in this manner. I am making that decision myself. No one has told me whether I can or should testify or speak further about this matter. There has been discussion about an appearance before Congress. Any testimony from this office would not go beyond our report. It contains our findings and analysis and the reasons for the decisions we made. We chose those words carefully, and the work speaks for itself. And the report is my testimony. I would not provide information beyond that which is already public in any appearance before Congress. In addition, access to our underlying work product is being decided in a process that does not involve our office.

So beyond what I’ve said here today and what is contained in our written work, I do not believe it is appropriate for me to speak further about the investigation or to comment on the actions of the Justice Department or Congress. And it’s for that reason I will not be taking questions today, as well.

Now, before I step away, I want to thank the attorneys, the F.B.I. agents, the analysts, the professional staff who helped us conduct this investigation in a fair and independent manner. These individuals who spent nearly two years with the special counsel’s office were of the highest integrity. And I will close by reiterating the central allegation of our indictments, that there were multiple, systematic efforts to interfere in our election. And that allegation deserves the attention of every American. Thank you. Thank you for being here today.






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Posted in DONALD TRUMP, HWH COMMENTARY

THE POWER OF DONALD TRUMP

Frankly, I’ve never witnessed in my lifetime the power that one man has over the emotional responses of so many people worldwide – instantaneously. This is no slow burner. He pops people. One person does all that with a tweet – less than 144 characters.

Usually it’s a massive government operation designed to sway the population of a people into thinking for the purpose of behaving in a pre-designated way over time, that eventually gets the attention of the populace as being overly manipulative.

What he does – is a pop. He punches back when he gets punched. Everyone said he couldn’t be president with such thin skin, but as it turns out, the skin of the opposition is thinner. Much thinner. Hysteria type of thin. So, my suggestion is to practice what you preach. Don’t throw the first punch. Get control of your emotions.

You punch him, then you go hysterical when he fights back. You all do it like clockwork. It makes for great theatre if you like that kind of theatre – angry, popped heads jumping off your necks, eyes lobbing all over the place as if you’re covering all your bases with your faces as you shout non-stop your highly charged name-calling rants – the very behavior you tell him to stop doing, you’re doing.

Wake up. Startle yourself. Step away from yourself. See yourself looking and acting like you tell him not to look and act. Who do you think you are, his mother? You are too emotionally involved with this man whom you desperately want to control, who doesn’t want to be controlled. By YOU? Really? What delusional fantasy drug are you taking whereby you would even think that your job as a journalist was to control a president? What a president thinks, says and does? Or you’ll bring him down? That’s crazy talk.

You don’t get to beat somebody up, then tell the one you beat up to just walk away. Listen to yourselves. You get paid to keep your cool, to report the news, not to make the news by making it clear that your job now is to take down a president.

Hillary Clinton engaged in the same mud-slinging behavior. She lost the election because she repeatedly disrespected a foreign leader during her campaign, then lectured white people on racism to make black people vote for her. If she thought she was going to be president, she wouldn’t have been playing on a Russian prejudice that evidently didn’t exist in the USA. And Blacks don’t respect people who turn on their own. They use them. They don’t trust them. She used prejudice to win and lost.

Donald Trump is one person. When he speaks, he speaks alone. The pile-on by news analysts and journalists and commentators and people who actually have their own shows, after he speaks anything is nothing like I’ve ever witnessed. It’s pure ugly. It’s the devil, the evil, in all of you being unleashed on one man, one person, the President of the United States. He is supposed to turn the other way when you pile on the abuse – according to you. That’s the protocol. That’s how the system works. That’s how the system has always worked. Well, if that is so, and I’m not denying it, then the system of governing is rigged. It’s fake out front in view of the populace for the purpose of keeping the populace from knowing what’s really going on in their government.

Donald Trump triggers you, because he won’t let you control him. That’s on you. He triggers you when he responds at all. That’s on you. He knows what you’re doing. The game you’re playing.

I don’t want to watch wimps lie on T.V. Hysteria is a wimp response. A component of hysteria is filling in the blanks with anything that comes to mind that is also destructive. Hysterics are not reality based.

Responding in kind is also a wimp response.

This all goes for you too Mr. World Leader.


Set the example without saying you’re setting the example.

When you say you’re taking the high road, everybody knows the high road isn’t familiar to you, that you’re faking being nice.

To congress and all public officials, I’m sick of seeing you expose your ugly. It serves no purpose except to incite the populace into a frenzy, whereby they turn on family, friends and associates. Donald Trump isn’t doing that, you are.

If somebody can’t work with Donald Trump, they can’t work with anybody. Fire all the asses who refuse to work with the President of the United States. He likes and wants results. You all like to delay, delay, delay till the next election. I don’t care who else did it. We’re here now. I don’t expect any further delay from any of you.

Politics in America has a new face – and it’s way overdue.

Accept it and work with it.






 

Posted in DONALD TRUMP, POLITICS

ACHILLE’S HEEL

You know how everyone has an Achille’s heel?

Donald J. Trump is the heel.