While I think we’ve heard the last gasps of “RUSSIAN COLLUSION!”, I already see folks saying
“OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE! The Special Counsel didn’t say there was no obstruction of justice.“
Here’s the definition of that crime.
And it is true. Mueller opted out entirely on the question of obstruction. Mueller left it up to the Department of Justice to make the decision. From the DOJ letter to the House and Senate, emphasis mine:
Obstruction of Justice.
… the Special Counsel considered whether to evaluate the conduct under Department standards governing prosecution and declination decisions but ultimately determined NOT to make a traditional prosecutorial judgment.
The Special Counsel therefore did NOT draw a conclusion one way or the other as to whether the examined conduct constituted obstruction. Instead, for each of the relevant actions investigated, the report sets out evidence on both sides of the question and leaves unresolved what the Special Counsel views as “difficult issues” of law and fact concerning whether the President?s actions and intent could be viewed as obstruction. …
The Special Counsel’s decision to describe the facts of his obstruction investigation without reaching any legal conclusions leaves it to the Attorney General to determine whether the conduct described in the report constitutes a crime. …
After reviewing the Special Counsel’s final report on these issues; consulting with Department officials, including the Office of Legal Counsel; and applying the principles of federal prosecution that guide our charging decisions, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and I have concluded that the evidence developed during the Special Counsel’s investigation is NOT sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense.
… In cataloging the President’s actions, many of which took place in public view, the report identifies NO actions that, in our judgment, constitute obstructive conduct, had a nexus to a pending or contemplated proceeding, and were done with corrupt intent, each of which, under the Department?s principles of federal prosecution guiding charging decisions, would need to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt to establish an obstruction-of- justice offense.
My advice, my plea to the Democrats? We had the media unable to find collusion or obstruction. We said, “Where’s the evidence”? Then the House and the Senate Committee reports said no collusion, no obstruction. Abd all they way through, y’all said “Don’t speak too soon, wait for the Mueller Report” …
OK, so now we’ve done that. We waited. It has arrived. Nothing. No collusion. No obstruction of justice. No illegal actions of either the President, his campaign, or his family. No indictments. No Don Jr. being led away in handcuffs. Nothing. The FBI/DOJ crooks’ “insurance plan” of screaming “RUSSIA! RUSSIANS UNDER THE BED!” went nowhere. Nada. Zip.
So here’s my advice and my plea.
Please give it all up, end all of these investigations, abjure them root and branch, and get back to what we pay you for, which is attending to the business of actually fixing our myriad of real national problems …
And while free advice is worth every penny you pay for it, it’s my advice as well as my plea because more investigations won’t convince people to turn Democrat … but they certainly may convince some people to turn Republican.
Here’s the thing. Americans like fair play.
And we now know, from their own testimony and emails as well as heaps of other evidence, that the leaders of the Obama DOJ and FBI illegally conspired to LIE ABOUT CLAIMED COLLUSION WITH RUSSIA, in order to first prevent Trump from being elected, and then to get him thrown out of the White House. In the process, they have ruined reputations and forced lots of perfectly innocent people to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to defend themselves from squadrons of government
And guess what?
Folks are angry about all of that …
And after all of this wasted time and money and falsely ruined reputations, further investigation will rightly be seen as just more of the same—more of using the limitless powers of the government to hound the President and his allies. And Americans know for a fact that that’s simply not fair. It won’t make people want to vote Democrat.
I probably shouldn’t say that. After all, why try to save my political opponents from self-immolation?
Why? Because I have lots of both family and people I’m proud to call friends that are Democrats, and because the two-party system works best when we have two strong, honest, parties who are striving to get the job done despite their differences …
My best to all, Democrats and Republicans alike, sinners, saints, savants, scoundrels, scholars and fools like me …
PS—Coda stolen shamelessly from Twitter:
<blockquote>Did conservatives unfairly criticize Mueller? No—his report vindicates their concerns. Mueller cleared Trump in fact—no prosecution—but still tried to harm him politically by claiming to make no call about obstruction. Yet to recommend prosecution or not *is* the call.</blockquote>
Fact check: True
PPS—The five stages of election grief are Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance. Can I be so bold as to invite all my Democratic friends to let go of the first two, where they’ve spent the last two years, and move forwards to Bargaining? We’ve got to start working together …