Senate

Democratic senator floats subpoena for Mueller report

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) vowed Thursday that Congress would subpoena special counsel Robert Mueller's report on the investigation into Russia's election interference if lawmakers don't receive a comprehensive summary from the Justice Department.

"There'll be subpoenas from Congress, including, I hope, from the Senate Judiciary Committee," Blumenthal, a member of the committee, said on CNN's "New Day."

"But there will also be a public perception of cover-up. Because if [Attorney General] William Barr believes - I think he does - that a sitting president can't be indicted ... and he brings no charges that Mueller says can't be brought, and if there also are no public disclosures, the public will rightly feel that there is a cover up."

Asked if Congress had the authority to subpoena Mueller's report, Blumenthal said that a House or Senate committee could take that step against anyone. But he acknowledged that the Department of Justice may "resist" a subpoena from the Judiciary panel.

Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee would need support from their Republican colleagues in order to issue a subpoena for the report. A court battle could also ensue if the Justice Department refused to publicize the report or resisted a subpoena.

Blumenthal's comments come as Democrats express concern about how much information Barr is expected to release to the public after Mueller submits his confidential report to the attorney general at the conclusion of his probe.

The Justice Department typically does not release information about individuals who are not formally charged following an investigation, but lawmakers have pushed for as much information as possible that has been uncovered in the probe to be released.

Blumenthal said Thursday that Barr would have to decide if he was going to be the "people's lawyer" or the "president's lawyer."

Speculation has grown that Mueller's investigation into Russia's election interference and possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin is nearing its end. 

CNN and The Washington Post reported Wednesday that Mueller may deliver his report next week to Barr, who is in his first week official week as the top official at the Justice Department.

Barr said in his confirmation hearing that he would make as much of the report public as he can based on the law. 

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