Dem rep on collusion: 'Impossible' to 'write it off completely' just going off Barr summary

Rep. David CicillineDavid Nicola CicillineSocial media summit highlights partisan approaches on tech FTC settles with Facebook for billion fine: report Democrats struggle to quell infighting MORE (D-R.I.) told CNN Monday morning it’s "impossible" to "write off completely" the question of Russian collusion without the full report from special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTop Republican considered Mueller subpoena to box in Democrats Kamala Harris says her Justice Dept would have 'no choice' but to prosecute Trump for obstruction Dem committees win new powers to investigate Trump MORE.

A summary released Sunday by Attorney General William Barr said Mueller’s investigation found no evidence of coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign.


Asked if this meant Democratic investigations going forward will focus less on the issue of Russian collusion, Cicilline said on CNN’s “New Day” that would likely be the case, but added that it was “a really impossible determination to make without reading the report [and] reading the conclusions of Mr. Mueller.”

If Barr’s summary is accurate, Cicilline told CNN’s John Berman, "We still have a responsibility to make sure we protect the integrity of our democracy and make sure we don’t allow the Russians or anyone else to attack us again.”

Cicilline added that House Democrats “may still have some responsibility to examine the conduct at issue even if it doesn’t rise to the level of criminality,” echoing comments by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerTrump knocks Mueller after deal struck for him to testify House Democrats request briefing on Epstein, Acosta Nadler apologized after repeatedly calling Hope Hicks 'Ms. Lewandowski' at hearing MORE (D-N.Y.) on CNN Sunday that the House has a much broader investigative mandate than Mueller’s.

Cicilline also addressed the question of obstruction of justice, which Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinThe Hill's Morning Report — Trump retreats on census citizenship question Judiciary issues blitz of subpoenas for Kushner, Sessions, Trump associates House Judiciary to vote to authorize subpoenas for Trump officials, immigration documents MORE determined Trump did not commit.

“This is the attorney general of the United States, in my view, attempting to shape the narrative on the obstruction of justice claim,” Cicilline said, noting that while Mueller explicitly wrote that Trump was not exonerated of obstruction of justice, “Mr. Barr, in 48 hours, turns that around and says ‘oh no, I’ve looked at it, he’s exonerated.’”