Senate

Dem senator: Many Republicans ‘privately expressed concerns’ about Mueller findings

Sen. Christopher Coons (D-Del.) said Monday that several of his Republican colleagues had “privately expressed concerns” about the findings of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russia’s election interference and the Trump campaign. 

 
Coons, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told CNN’s “New Day” that while “very few” Republicans would publicly call out President Trump for behavior detailed in the Mueller report, many had privately voiced concerns in conversations. 
 

“Many privately expressed concerns about what was revealed in the Mueller report in part because of the gap between what Attorney General [William] Barr characterized as being in the Mueller report and what was actually in the Mueller report for those who have taken the time to read through it,” Coons said. 

Mueller handed over his report to Barr in late March. The attorney general quickly released a four-page summary of the top-line conclusions to Congress. Mueller, in a March letter that was released this month, raised concerns to Barr about his memo, writing that it didn’t “capture the context, nature and substance of this office’s work and conclusions.”

 
Coon’s comments come after Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), a member of the House Freedom Caucus, said in a tweet over the weekend that he had finished reading Mueller’s report on Russia’s election interference and the Trump campaign. He outlined four of his “principal conclusions,” including that he believes Trump “has engaged in impeachable conduct.”
 
Coons added on Monday that he was “surprised” Amash said publicly “what I think many are thinking privately.” 
 

“Those who have read the Mueller report cannot avoid the conclusion that the President and some of his absolutely core advisers engaged in profoundly disappointing, reprehensible conduct. Conduct that would rise to the level of an obstruction of justice charge if he were anyone other than the president of the United States,” he said.

 

But Coons drew a hard line between Republicans raising concerns about Trump’s behavior and Republicans being willing to impeach Trump, saying he hadn’t “spoken to a single Republican senator who would vote to remove the president.”

 
“There is a difference between thinking the Mueller report reveals conduct that is deeply disappointing, inappropriate, even borderline or actually illegal and saying they would vote to remove the president,” Coons added. 
 
Though Senate Republicans have largely signaled they are ready to move on from Mueller’s two-year investigation, some have raised public concerns about Trump’s behavior and the actions of top aides as detailed in the report. 
 
Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) said the report included “an unflattering portrayal” of Trump. And Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) said he was “sickened at the extent and pervasiveness of dishonesty and misdirection by individuals in the highest office of the land, including the President.”
Tags Christopher Coons Donald Trump Justin Amash Mitt Romney Mueller report Robert Mueller Susan Collins

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