I think Mueller did provide a little more clarity, though obviously not as much as many would like. But I think he is operating within very restrictive parameters that he has set for himself, based on his narrow (I hesitate to say “conservative”) view of his remit.

He most certainly did blow a huge hole in the fairy tale that Barr tried to tell about what’s in the report and Trump’s supposed blamelessness.

The way I heard it, the reason he did not make a determination was b/c of the OLC opinion that Mueller interprets to mean he CANNOT make a determination of guilt, since the accused cannot be prosecuted. The only determination he could make would be to exonerate — which he pointedly said they did not believe was justified. I suppose he could also decline to prosecute without exonerating, as he did on the charge of conspiracy — which is also not a determination of innocence, only a judgment call that the evidence isn’t sufficient to obtain a conviction.

I agree that his “speak-no-more” position is a bit odd. He obviously wants the report to speak for itself, but as yesterday showed, just him speaking words out loud — even if they only reiterate what’s in the report — is enlightening and powerful. Congress may agree and compel him to do so. Americans aren’t readers; just watching him testify on TV, even if he just reads the report aloud, would have a big impact.

Not sure what you mean about a “ruse.” You mean a Deep State coup against Trump? Or a right wing finger drill to absolve him? I don’t see the SCO investigation as any kind of ruse by either side, and clearly Mueller didn’t either. But he plainly sees it in much more narrow, legalistic terms than most people (of both political persuasions) would like.

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Writer, filmmaker, and veteran — blogging at The King’s Necktie @TheKingsNecktie

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