Following reports that special counsel Robert Mueller personally complained to Attorney General William Barr about mischaracterizing his report's conclusions on Russia and President Donald Trump, former Nixon White House Counsel John Dean blasted Barr's judgment in conversation with CNN's Erin Burnett.
"It's a pretty devastating report, particularly on the eve of Barr going to Congress to have to testify on this very subject tomorrow before the Senate Judiciary Committee," said Dean. "He's going to be grilled. He'd better be prepared because it's clear he was spinning what the special counsel did. He didn't do it accurately. The special counsel has called him on it. And he better have some very good answers by tomorrow morning."
"Barr writes the summary, he gives him a chance to review it. Mueller does not. Then Mueller doesn't like it, and proceeds with his own letter," said Burnett. "Why do you think Mueller chose not the read it?"
"Well, I think that it was clearly under the regulations, his requirement to turn the report over, his report to the attorney general, and then for the attorney general to deal with it accordingly," said Dean. "And when the attorney general dealt with it publicly and inaccurately, he called him on it."
"And apparently from the reporting, not only was Barr surprised, but the people in the Department of Justice were somewhat struck by the, the result of the special counsel calling the attorney general," added Dean. "They realized that he has probably misrepresented their work and now they were involved in this whole mess. So Barr is spinning this."
"He looks like he's ready to take a bullet for the president on this issue," said Dean. "He's let the president off Scott free and that clearly wasn't the findings of the special counsel's report, we know now ... especially on the obstruction issue."