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Mueller probably won’t be giving new information — here’s why that can still sink Trump

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Former special counsel Robert Mueller will appear in Congress this week to testify for two hours about the report he authored on the case of Russian collusion.

The hearing is set for Wednesday, though Mueller has said that he won’t have any additional information other than what is in his report. A Washington Post report used examples of past Mueller testimony to outline what can be anticipated. The reality, however, is that regardless of whether Mueller sticks to the report or not, he’ll deliver enough to put the president in a difficult situation.

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“For anybody hoping he’s going to provide new information or evidence against the president, I think many people will be very disappointed,” The Post quoted John Pistole, who served as Mueller’s former deputy. “And then on the other side of the aisle, some may be disappointed to find out that he’s not a demagogue of the left.”

But that’s not what Mueller needs to do to make Trump’s life difficult. Trump has gone above and beyond keeping his staff and former staff from testifying in a public hearing. The president knows that once Americans see and hear what his aides did, he’s in trouble. Clips of those hearings will be spread across social media and appear on every website. They’ll be used in super PAC ads and fill the news cycle until he can distract with another racist rant.

It’s for that reason that if Mueller only sticks to the words of his report, he’ll still do more than enough damage to Trump. The overwhelming majority of Americans haven’t read the Mueller report. If they’re viewers of Fox News, they likely believe that Trump was fully exonerated, because that’s the lie the overwhelming number of shows on network reported. The hosts who did tell the truth, were either ignored or attacked.

Pistole told The Post that he expects Mueller will be “as unresponsive as possible, while telling the truth. I think his first approach will be, ‘Read the report and form your own conclusions.’ He’s no longer a government employee, and he can tell them to pound sand, not that he would use those words.”

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All members must do is ask Mueller to explain a passage in lay-terms so Americans that are not lawyers can understand it. Another way officials can get answers from Mueller is to ask “yes or no” if he exonerated Trump and if he would have recommended an indicted Trump if not for the Office of Legal Counsel opinion that a president can’t be indicted.

They could also ask if Mueller included the ten examples of obstruction of justice in his report to encourage Congress to act. They could even ask if there were more than ten examples and he simply kept the list at ten. Further, they could approach why Mueller didn’t push for Trump to be interviewed in person.

The Mueller testimony won’t result in the president being marched out of the White House in handcuffs, but that doesn’t mean it is a waste of time. If Mueller can reveal his report to the American people outside of the legal-speak in which it’s written, it might change political opinion on the issue of impeachment. If Congress has more cover from the public, they could likely vote to begin impeachment proceedings.

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Read the full backstory on Mueller’s previous testimony at The Washington Post.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Trump claimed North Korea missile testing ‘would stop’ — but they just launched again: report

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The upcoming G7 summit meeting in Bairritz, France will have one more issue to grapple with after North Korea reportedly conducted missile tests.

"South Korea's military confirms that North Korea has launched a projectile this morning. From South Hamgyong Province. Japan's government reported it first," Voice of America Seoul bureau chief William Gallo Tweeted Friday.

"North Korea has now conducted nine rounds of launches since early May. But this one's notable because it comes after Trump says Kim promised "this testing would stop when the exercises end." They did end Tuesday. And yet..." he noted.

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Trump is ‘having a full-blown mental breakdown’ and needs to resign: Ex-Trump staffer

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Leading Republican elected officials should work with President Donald Trump's family to negotiate him resigning from office, a former top White House official suggested on MSNBC on Friday.

Former White House press secretary Anthony Scaramucci blasted his former boss during an interview with Chuck Todd on MSNBC's "Meet the Press Daily."

"He has totally and completely lost it. There is nobody that can look at the situation, read the tweets, look at the press sprays, and say he hasn’t lost it," Scaramucci argued.

"What does that mean, lost it?" Todd asked. "Define that."

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Trump responds to China raising tariffs — by raising tariffs on over half a trillion dollars in Chinese goods

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After US markets tanked on Friday, President Donald Trump dramatically escalated his trade war with China.

"For many years China (and many other countries) has been taking advantage of the United States on trade, intellectual property theft, and much more. Our country has been losing hundreds of billions of dollars a year to China, with no end in sight," Trump tweeted.

"Sadly, past Administrations have allowed China to get so far ahead of fair and balanced trade that it has become a great burden to the American taxpayer. As President, I can no longer allow this to happen," he argued.

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