Redacted Mueller report out 'within a week'

Jerry Nadler and Robert Mueller

Democratic lawmakers pressed Attorney General William Barr in a contentious hearing Tuesday over the Justice Department's lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that, if it prevails, would cause millions of Americans to lose their health care coverage.

Mueller did not reach a conclusion on whether Trump had obstructed justice by trying to interfere with the probe, but Barr wrote in his letter that the president had not committed a crime. Barr said he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein decided that the evidence was insufficient to establish obstruction.

Barr is to appear before a House appropriations subcommittee, where he is expected to face questions about the still unreleased report by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Barr also dismissed accusations that he was hasty to release the March 24 letter outlining the conclusions of the report.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, a Republican, has said he would be satisfied hearing only from Barr and not Mueller.

Barr said Mueller and his team did not review his March 24 summary of the long-awaited report's conclusions, which allowed Trump to declare "complete and total exoneration". The report, which is almost 400 pages long, is being scoured now to remove grand jury information and details that relate to pending investigations.

Democrats also criticised Mr. Barr for taking it upon himself in the letter to decide that Mr. Trump should not be charged with obstruction.

"In many ways, your letter raises more questions than it answers", Lowey said.

A Justice Department spokeswoman declined to say whether this means there will be no claims of executive privilege invoked over any part of Mueller's report or whether Barr might, at some point, advise Trump to invoke the privilege over some sections, or whether Barr might do so unilaterally.

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Over 2 ½ hours, Barr addressed a range of Democrats' concerns about Mueller's report, offering new details on how and why he quickly distilled and release its principal conclusions and what he plans to do next.

"So we had an inkling as to what was coming our direction, and so even more thinking within the Department was done about that over that time, that was a matter of weeks".

"I hear members of the committee basically saying, you've taken this legal position, it can have bad consequences. bad policy consequences", Barr said.

Appeals for the entire report, which is nearly 400 pages long, came almost immediately after Barr issued a four-page summary of the investigation late last month. Rep. "The second is information that the intelligence community believes would reveal intelligence sources and methods", he said. "And finally, we intend to redact information that implicated the privacy or reputational interest of peripheral players where there is a decision not to charge them".

Further, Barr said the report will "color code the decisions from the report and put in explanatory notes making it public" to distinguish the redactions between the various categories.

"From a prosecutor's standpoint, the bottom line is binary, which is: charges or no charges", Barr said. Democrats have salivated over the quote, hanging their hopes on the possibility that the report does contain damning information on Trump.

He added that he is relying on his own discretion to make as much public as he can.

He also criticized those calling for the report's release as hypocritical. "I'm not going to say anything more about it until the report is out and everyone has a chance to look at it". Questions are sure to remain, however, about the extent to which Barr has blacked out material from the report.

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