Speaking at Justice Department headquarters in Washington, D.C., Wednesday morning, a visibly nervous Robert Mueller told reporters that he found no evidence of collusion with Russia, but then appeared to invent a new, extrajudicial standard for innocence in the United States.
First going through many of the conclusions of his April report on supposed Russian interference in the 2016 election, Mueller then announced that he will be “resigning from the Department of Justice to return to private life,” effective today.
He restated his report’s conclusion that there was no evidence to support the collusion narrative.
Mueller cites “insufficient” evidence to conclude “broader conspiracy”
— Charlie Spiering (@charliespiering) May 29, 2019
As for the obstruction case, Mueller stated that his office was unable to charge President Trump.
“Under long-standing department policy, a president cannot be charged with a federal crime while he’s in office,” Mueller added, saying that “charging the president with a crime was not an option we could therefore consider.”
In defiance of his prosecutorial duties, Mueller restated the “prove a negative” standard from his report.
“If we had confidence that the president did not commit a crime, we would have said so,” Mueller said during his appearance at DOJ headquarters.
As I explained last month following the release of the Mueller report:
But the conclusion from Mueller’s prosecutors is largely misleading and it fails the logic test. It was not Mueller’s job to prove a negative – that the president did not commit a crime. His job was to determine whether the president did commit a crime.
Commentators on Twitter seemed baffled by the new Mueller standard of innocence, with many arguing that by bypassing his duties as a prosecutor, he greenlit impeachment for Democrats in Congress.
Great legacy Bob!
The Russians you indicted officially have more rights than Trump. At least they’re assumed innocent until guilty in a court
Trump is guilty until he somehow proves himself innocent of every accusation in your dossier you refuse to answer questions about
— Undercover Huber (@JohnWHuber) May 29, 2019
Mueller just poured gasoline on the Democrats' Impeachment fire.
— toddstarnes (@toddstarnes) May 29, 2019
Exactly right. If Mueller was never going to be able to find obstruction of justice because of DOJ policy, then what was the point of investigating that in the first place? By Mueller’s reasoning, he couldn’t have said Trump/campaign had conspired with Russia if he had found that https://t.co/RjX8HlHMYU
— Brit Hume (@brithume) May 29, 2019
"If we had confidence that the president did not commit a crime, we would have said so." That is not the standard of a prosecutor. Prosecutors exist to determine whether someone committed a chargeable offense, not whether they are exonerated of charges.
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) May 29, 2019
The president also took to Twitter to speak about the Mueller report:
Nothing changes from the Mueller Report. There was insufficient evidence and therefore, in our Country, a person is innocent. The case is closed! Thank you.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 29, 2019
Mueller’s final report on Russian interference in the 2016 election exonerated the president on charges — originating largely from baseless allegations drawn up in an infamous dossier financed by the Hillary Clinton campaign — that he or any members of his campaign collaborated with Moscow to secure his victory at the polls. Even as they strung up several Trump associates on process crimes unrelated to the investigation, Mueller and his team of Democrat prosecutors failed to find a single piece of evidence to prove the Trump-Russia collusion conspiracy.