DOJ Releases Part of Memo on Decision Not to Charge Trump with Obstruction

Attorney General William Barr speaks alongside Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, right and acting Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General Edward O’Callaghan, left, about the release of a redacted version of special counsel Robert Mueller's report during a news conference, Thursday, April 18, 2019, at the Department of Justice in Washington. …
AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has released part of an internal memorandum recommending against prosecuting then-President Donald Trump for obstruction of justice as a result of findings by Special Counsel Robert Mueller in 2019.

As Breitbart News reported earlier this month, Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia issued a scathing rebuke to former Attorney General William Barr over his handling of the case.

Mueller’s original assignment had been to investigate foreign interference in the 2016 presidential election. He found no evidence of collusion with Russia. However, he also added a second volume exploring allegations of obstruction.

As Breitbart News reported in March 2019:

Attorney General Barr notes: “The Special Counsel states that while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” However, he says, that after consulting with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, “the evidence developed during the Special Counsel’s investigation is not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense.”

Democrats later claimed, falsely, that the only reason that Trump was not prosecuted was because of DOJ policy against prosecuting a sitting president. However, the Office of Legal Counsel prepared a substantive memorandum against charges.

Barr stated at the time that some of Trump’s actions, while controversial, stemmed from “non-corrupt” motives, owing to the unique circumstances in which he found himself under political and legal siege the moment he took office in 2017.

That memo, heavily redacted, was released. The Department has asked the court to keep the remainder of the memo secret.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new e-book, We Told You So!: The First 100 Days of Joe Biden’s Radical Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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