McConnell says 'case closed' on Mueller

McConnell says 'case closed' on Mueller
© Greg Nash

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden, Eastland and rejecting the cult of civility California governor predicts 'xenophobic' GOP will likely be third party in 15 years This week: Congress set for clash on Trump's border request MORE (R-Ky.) on Tuesday declared the "case closed" on special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerKamala Harris says her Justice Dept would have 'no choice' but to prosecute Trump for obstruction Dem committees win new powers to investigate Trump Schiff says Intel panel will hold 'series' of hearings on Mueller report MORE's investigation, blasting Democrats for having an "absolute meltdown" over his report.

"What we've seen is a meltdown, an absolute meltdown, an inability to accept the bottom-line conclusion on Russian interference from the special counsel's report," McConnell said from the Senate floor. "My Democratic colleagues seem to be publicly working through the five stages of grief."  

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The remarks from McConnell come amid a no holds barred fight between the two parties in Washington over the handling of Mueller's report. Mueller found no evidence of a conspiracy between Russia and President TrumpDonald John TrumpConway defends herself against Hatch Act allegations amid threat of subpoena How to defuse Gulf tensions and avoid war with Iran Trump says 'stubborn child' Fed 'blew it' by not cutting rates MORE's campaign or organization, but did not reach a conclusion on whether the president obstructed justice.

Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrThe Hill's Morning Report - Crunch time arrives for 2020 Dems with debates on deck Supreme Court set to deliver ruling on census citizenship question Trump: 'I think I win the election easier' if Democrats launch impeachment proceedings MORE did reach that conclusion upon reviewing Mueller's report with then-Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinTrump: Appointing Sessions was my biggest mistake Trump blasts Mueller, decries 'witch hunt' at 2020 launch Trump: I didn't fire Mueller since firings 'didn't work out too well' for Nixon MORE. Democrats have criticized that finding and are demanding to hear from Mueller. Democrats on the House Judiciary have also scheduled a vote this week to hold Barr in contempt. 

McConnell on Tuesday argued that Democrats are angry at Barr for doing his job. 

"Baseless accusations of perjury, laughable threats of impeachment. Look, we all know what's going on here. The whole angry barrage the Democrats had prepared to unleash on President Trump except the facts let them down," McConnell said. "They are slandering a distinguished public servant because the real world has disappointed them."

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerMcConnell-backed Super PAC says nominating Roy Moore would be 'gift wrapping' seat to Dems McConnell vows to 'vigorously' oppose Moore's Senate bid Pelosi: Trump delay on Harriet Tubman is 'an insult to the hopes of millions' MORE (D-N.Y.) quickly hit back at McConnell, saying he was trying to "whitewash" Mueller's findings and compared his calls to "move on" to "Richard Nixon saying 'let's move on' at the height of the investigation of his wrongdoing."

McConnell said that some on the left had turned Mueller into a "kind of secular saint," and that they appeared to be "grieving" over the findings and should "come back to reality." 

"For two years many of the president's opponents seemed to be hoping the worst conspiracy theories were actually true. They seemed to be hoping for a national crisis for the sake of their own politics," McConnell added. 

"Russia set out to sow discord, to create chaos in American politics and undermine confidence in our democracy. But on that given the ... fixation on delegitimizing the president, the president Americans chose, and shooting any messenger who tells them inconvenient truths ... I'm afraid the Russians hardly need to lift a finger," McConnell continued. 

The floor speech marks the most extensive remarks McConnell, who is up for reelection in 2020 and is aligning himself closely with Trump, has made on the Mueller report.

Updated at 1:22 p.m.