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Mueller probably wrote his own summary — and an ex-federal prosecutor wants to know why Barr didn’t release it

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Special counsel Robert Mueller likely wrote his own conclusions and summary, according to one federal prosecutor. For some reason, however, Attorney General Bill Barr didn’t release it and opted for something like a White House “press release” instead.

In a Sunday analysis with MSNBC’s Ari Melber, former federal prosecutor John Flannery wondered why there are still so many unknowns about the Mueller report. His first example was that Americans don’t even know how many pages there are.

“We didn’t get an executive summary from the report,” she said. “We have what really looks like a press release that didn’t get ready in time for the Sunday talk shows. So, that could have a romp through a very his misleading document… And I bet you that knowing the way Mueller works, there was probably an executive summary, and there was probably a set of conclusions.”

Melber noted that Flannery is a “pretty good lawyer” and asked if the longer the report the “worse Barr might look for trying to pull this off by Sunday night?”

“Absolutely. And consider the fact that we have — you have pointed this out — you have these partial quotes,” Flannery continued. “Well, what if the quote on page three, ‘while this report does not conclude that the president did not commit a crime it also doesn’t exonerate him.’ He said ‘the report.’ He didn’t say ‘as to the question of the obstruction of justice.’ He said, ‘the report.’ The whole report doesn’t conclude he committed a crime.”

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Melber got into the punctuation of the Barr letter that quotes the “best sentence” that does or does not exonerate Trump. He noted that the quote from Mueller began in the middle of a sentence in the Mueller report. He could tell because the word “the” began with a bracketed capital “t.”

As the report states: “[T]he investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”

“So, it is the one that you are going hear the most of,” Melber said.

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“That it wasn’t the beginning of a sentence,” Flannery agreed. “Something preceded it. And they put the bracket there as the beginning with a capital T.”

Melber said that a lawyer might change the meaning of it by beginning the sentence in any manner of ways.

“A lot of the comments afterward — there is no evidence,” Flannery continued. “They never say that even in this P.R. construct. They say, ‘The investigation did not establish…’ OK, it did not establish this crime? Well, what was your standard? Was it beyond a reasonable doubt, which is not the standard for a grand jury or any investigation I ever ran when you begin it because the case continues and you get more evidence and people cooperate and people drop off. So, that is not the standard. Also did not establish according to what crime? When they issued these thousands of subpoenas, everyone probably, at least said, Section 371 which is a conspiracy charge. They don’t tell us what the charge is.”

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He also concluded that Barr probably shouldn’t have gone near commenting about obstructions of justice.

“You make a judgment when somebody takes the stand you never heard before,” Flannery said. “Are they a truth teller or not and you operate on that premise when you question them. In this case, we know in the second part when they are talking about whether or not there is obstruction — that is a very funny paragraph there. And it is like Barr couldn’t restrain himself from spiking this thing when he shouldn’t have touched it at all as to whether or not there was any obstruction.”

Watch their full analysis below:

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Ivanka bashed by CNN guest for jumping into Trump racist furor late and trying to make herself look good

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Appearing on CNN, the author of a piece in The Atlantic on Ivanka Trump's disappearing act whenever her father, President Donald Trump, does something offensive, said the first daughter likes to pick her spots when she can be "part of the show."

Speaking with CNN host Ana Cabrera, journalist Elaina Plott said Ivanka's influence on her father has been overstated since the beginning of his presidency and only she moves into the public eye when it benefits her.

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House GOP group wants to pressure Amazon into selling gay conversion therapy books written by long-debunked quack

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A key bloc of House Republicans is planning to put pressure on Amazon to once again start selling "gay conversion therapy" books that the website had previously removed for peddling a dangerous, pseudo-scientific procedure that has been linked to suicide and mental health problems.

Vice News reports that the Republican Study Group issued a handout to its members this week encouraging them to raise concerns about "Amazon censorship" of books written by Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, the late clinical psychologist who has been credited with pioneering so-called gay conversion therapy techniques.

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American Islamic State ‘sniper’ charged in New York: Justice Dept

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A naturalized American who was a sniper for the Islamic State group has been charged in New York with material support for a terror group after being captured in Syria and repatriated to the United States, the Justice Department announced Friday.

Kazakhstan-born Ruslan Maratovich Asainov fought for the Islamic State in Syria for five years before he was captured by the Syrian Democratic Forces and handed over to US custody, the department said.

Asainov, 43, was brought back to the United States on Thursday and was to be arraigned Friday afternoon in federal court in Brooklyn.

He fought for IS in Syria from 2013 to 2018 as a sniper and a weapons trainer for other combatants.

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