Here is what I believe we can discern from Robert Mueller’s findings about Donald Trump’s conduct during the 2016 presidential campaign and its immediate aftermath.
The president didn’t collude or conspire to collude with Russians who wanted him to win that election. That allegation is now gone, giving Trump some ammo to fire at critics who are obsessed with he calls the “collusion delusion.”
However, obstruction of justice remains an open question. Mueller didn’t clear Trump of obstructing justice, despite what the president keeps saying. An obstruction of justice investigation, the way I see it, remains on the front burner — and it’s going to get real hot to the touch.
Therein likely lies the newest source of conflict between the Republican president and his Democratic foes in Congress.
Democratic House committee chairmen and women are likely to subpoena Mueller and Attorney General William Barr to ask them point blank about many matters relating to obstruction of justice. That’s their prerogative.
Democratic senators will seek to do the same thing, but they have this obstacle facing them known as partisan loyalty to the president among GOP senators who still control the flow of business in the upper legislative chamber.
I placed my faith in Mueller to do a thorough job of investigating this Russia matter. I believe he fulfilled his duty. I vowed to accept his findings, no matter where they came down. He has revealed them and I still accept them.
Moreover, I also accept the idea that Mueller appears to believe that obstruction of justice remains a live option for Congress to handle.
I urge all members of both congressional chambers to tread lightly and with extreme care as they walk through this explosive minefield. It looks to me as though the special counsel has handed them a live grenade shrouded in a potential “high crime and misdemeanor.”