Federal law requires Mueller to present Attorney General William Barr with a confidential report upon the completion of his work, but it's ultimately Barr's call on how much of that report is made public. A bid by the Senate's top Democrat, Chuck Schumer, to have the resolution approved by voice vote after the House's action was thwarted by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.
Reps. John Katko and Anthony Brindisi voted Thursday to pass a House resolution demanding the public release of special counsel Robert Mueller's report when he finishes an investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. The four were Representatives Justin Amash, Matt Gaetz, Thomas Massie and Paul Gosar.
While Republicans condemned the resolution as a political move, ultimately 190 voted in favor. Lindsey Graham of SC interjected and asked that the resolution be modified to call for Attorney General William Barr to appoint a special counsel to investigate the Department of Justice's handling of the Clinton email investigation and other matters. But nobody has lifted a finger to call for an investigation into the other side of the story.
Weissmann's departure is the clearest sign yet that Mueller's investigation is wrapping up. Nevertheless, the Democrats who introduced the resolution hope it will serve to pressure Barr.
"Among other things, the president has repeatedly referred to the investigation as a witch hunt and called it a hoax, rigged, and a scam", he continued.
At the same time, an overwhelming majority of Americans believe there should be a public report on what Mueller finds.
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Several Republicans have also agreed that Mueller should release not simply the full report, but any and all investigative materials that informed it. Jerry Nadler, D-New York, told lawmakers that the report should be made available to the public and Congress, emphasizing that "transparency is fundamental to the special counsel's process".
That answer has not satisfied Democrats, however, who have continued to press for assurances that the report will be released publicly.
Schumer added that he was "deeply disappointed" in Graham, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee. He must then notify Congress, but has not indicated to what extent he intends to share the information with lawmakers or the public.
I'm tempted to write "Since when do congressional Republicans defy Trump?" but today would be the wrong day to make that point.
Democrats speculate that the report might have enough evidence to support an impeachment effort against the president.