Ex-Watergate prosecutor says Barr presented a 'mischaracterization' of Mueller report

Former Watergate special prosecutor Richard Ben-Veniste said in an interview that aired Tuesday on "Rising" that Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrTrump sides with religious leaders in fight against governors Senate Democrats call on Trump administration to let Planned Parenthood centers keep PPP loans Senate Republicans call on DOJ to investigate Planned Parenthood loans MORE gave the American people a "mischaracterization of the conclusions" in special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerCNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump CNN anchor rips Trump over Stone while evoking Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting The Hill's 12:30 Report: New Hampshire fallout MORE's report into Russia's election meddling. 

"What he gave them was a mischaracterization of the conclusions of that report," Ben-Veniste told Hill.TV's Jamal Simmons on Monday, adding that Barr was "banking on the ... suspicion that most Americans will be too lazy to read the report." 

"It certainly doesn't show that the president was entirely cooperative. It shows that the president refused to testify under oath, [and] refused to sit down for an interview," he said. "So how is that cooperative?" 

The Justice Department released a redacted version of Mueller's report last week, which said that the Trump campaign did not conspire or coordinate with Russians during the 2016 presidential election. Investigators did not reach a decision on whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpMulvaney: 'We've overreacted a little bit' to coronavirus Former CBS News president: Most major cable news outlets 'unrelentingly liberal' in 'fear and loathing' of Trump An old man like me should be made more vulnerable to death by COVID-19 MORE obstructed justice in the probe. 

Democrats argue that Barr botched the rollout of the report, and has worked to protect Trump publicly, citing the attorney general's comments. 

— Julia Manchester