House votes for Mueller report to be made public

The House passed a resolution Thursday calling on Justice Department (DOJ) officials to release special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE’s highly anticipated report about his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Lawmakers unanimously passed the nonbinding resolution in a 420-0 vote. 

Four Republicans — Reps. Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarHouse passes tribal land bills after votes were canceled following Trump tweet Trump tweets — and Dems pull two bills from floor Trump urges GOP to reject 'casino' bill backed by Warren MORE (Ariz.), Matt GaetzMatthew (Matt) GaetzGOP Mueller critic says Flynn contacted him during special counsel probe: report 2020 Dem Seth Moulton calls for expanding cannabis access for veterans Hillicon Valley: Trump takes flak for not joining anti-extremism pact | Phone carriers largely end sharing of location data | Huawei pushes back on ban | Florida lawmakers demand to learn counties hacked by Russians | Feds bust 0M cybercrime group MORE (Fla.), Thomas MassieThomas Harold MassieGOP lawmaker doubles down on criticizing Kerry's political science degree as not 'science' John Kerry fires back at GOP congressman questioning his 'pseudoscience' degree Overnight Energy: John Kerry hits Trump over climate change at hearing | Defends Ocasio-Cortez from GOP attacks | Dems grill EPA chief over auto emissions rollback plan MORE (Ky.), and Justin AmashJustin AmashClash with Trump marks latest break with GOP leaders for Justin Amash Trump fires back at 'loser' GOP lawmaker who said he'd engaged in 'impeachable conduct' Romney: Justin Amash 'reached a different conclusion' than I did on impeachment MORE (Mich.) — voted present.

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“I’ve said to millions of Americans on television that I support releasing the Mueller report," Gaetz told The Hill on his decision to vote present.

“I take specific exception to the elements of the resolution noting praise for Mueller, without also noting the criticism of his very biased staffing decisions," he added. "It’s like he was fishing for talent in the Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonDe Blasio pitches himself as tough New Yorker who can take on 'Don the con' From dive bars to steakhouses: How Iowa caucus staffers blow off steam Warren policy ideas show signs of paying off MORE fan club aquarium.”

The resolution calls for the Justice Department to release Mueller's report to Congress and the public.

The measure — introduced by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerDemocrats are running out of stunts to pull from impeachment playbook Trump asks if Nadler will look into Clinton's 'deleted and acid washed' emails Trump tweets conservative commentator's criticism of FBI director MORE (D-N.Y.) — argues there is “overwhelming public interest” to release the contents of the high-profile report. The resolution calls on the department to fully release the report to Congress and to release it to the public “except to the extent the public disclosure of any portion thereof is expressly prohibited by law.”

Should the Justice Department decide against releasing the report to the public, House Democrats could potentially subpoena the department for its contents. Thursday’s vote also provided the opportunity for Democrats to force Republicans into potentially taking a difficult vote.

The vote on the resolution comes after William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrClash with Trump marks latest break with GOP leaders for Justin Amash Schiff: Impeachment proceedings could be 'tool' to get information, evidence Trump fires back at 'loser' GOP lawmaker who said he'd engaged in 'impeachable conduct' MORE, who was confirmed as President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: 'I will not let Iran have nuclear weapons' Rocket attack hits Baghdad's Green Zone amid escalating tensions: reports Buttigieg on Trump tweets: 'I don't care' MORE’s second attorney general in February, faced numerous questions about the Mueller investigation and the special counsel’s final report during his confirmation hearing earlier this year.

“It is important that Congress stand up for the principle of full transparency. At a time when the president has publicly attacked the Russian investigation more than 1,100 times and counting. Among other things, the president has repeatedly referred to the investigation as a witch hunt and called it a hoax, rigged and a scam,” Nadler said on the floor. “This resolution is also needed because high-ranking DOJ officials have indicated that they may not release — that they may not release information about individuals who are not indicted.”

Barr said he would release as much of Mueller’s findings as possible, but was careful not to commit to releasing the report in full — something that rankled Democrats who argue that the high public interest surrounding the investigation demands its release.

Under current regulations, Mueller is required to submit a final, confidential report explaining his prosecutorial decisions to the DOJ. It will be up to Barr whether to release part or any of Mueller’s findings.

Thursday’s vote comes amid intense speculation Mueller is close to wrapping up his investigation, which has gone on for nearly two years amid constant public attacks from Trump.

Mueller has indicted several Russians and Trump associates in the course of his probe, but none of those charges have alleged any conspiracy between Trump’s campaign and Russia to meddle in the election.

— This report was updated at 10:45 a.m.