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Congress could get Mueller report by mid-April

Posted at 3:49 PM, Mar 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-29 16:32:57-04

The Justice Department will release special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the Russia investigation to Congress and the public by “mid-April, if not sooner,” Attorney General Bill Barr said Friday.

In a letter to the chairmen of the House and Senate judiciary committees, Barr said his department is “well along” making redactions, with the assistance of the special counsel, and “there are no plans to submit the report to the White House for a privilege review.”

The exact length of the report has been shrouded in secrecy, but Barr said Friday the report is “nearly 400 pages long,” not including appendices and tables, and “sets forth the Special Counsel’s findings, his analysis, and the reasons for his conclusions.”

Barr also offered to testify shortly after the report is released, suggesting May 1 for the Senate committee and May 2 for the House committee.

On Sunday, Barr released a four-page summary of Mueller’s principal conclusions, which Barr makes clear were not meant to be an “exhaustive recounting of the Special Counsel’s investigation or report.”

In that summary, Barr said that the Russia investigation “did not establish” that the Trump campaign conspired with the Russian government before the election, but Mueller did not draw a conclusion about whether Trump obstructed justice.

“Everyone will soon be able to read it on their own,” Barr added Friday.

Barr further confirmed that the Justice Department and special counsel’s team are working to redact four types of information from the report: grand jury material, sensitive intelligence material, information that involves ongoing investigations, and “information that would unduly infringe on the personal privacy and reputational interests of peripheral third parties.”

But the redactions Barr is working on are unlikely to satisfy Democrats. House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler of New York asked Barr to work with the committee to ask the courts to make grand jury information public, according to a Democratic aide, who said Barr would not commit to doing so in a call earlier this week.

Democrats argue there is precedent for releasing grand jury material, and the aide said they see that as the “primary obstacle” to making the full Mueller report public.