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Nadler argues executive privilege can't be used to block parts of Mueller report

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said Sunday that he does not believe President Trump can use executive privilege to shield certain aspects of Robert Mueller's findings after the special counsel concluded his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

"The president must personally assert executive privilege, and I do not believe it exists here at all because as we learned from the Nixon tapes case executive privilege cannot be used to hide wrongdoing," Nadler said on NBC's "Meet the Press."

"The president may try to assert it, may try to hide things behind it, but I don't think that's right or [would] be successful," Nadler added.

The congressman cited a 1974 Supreme Court ruling in which justices unanimously held that executive privilege could not be used to override the judicial process based on general confidentiality. 

The special counsel submitted his final report to Attorney General William Barr on Friday evening, signaling the end of the nearly two-year investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Barr is expected to brief Congress on the report's main findings as early as Sunday. The attorney general has previously committed to releasing as much of the report as possible under the law, but Democrats and some Republicans have been insistent that the full document be made public.

The president tweeted last weekend that there should be no Mueller report amid a tirade against the investigation, but on Wednesday said the public should be able to view the findings.

Nadler insisted on Sunday that the full report and its underlying evidence be made available, arguing that a failure to do so would prevent Congress from conducting its oversight duties.

"Congress must get all the information and the evidence that the Department of Justice may have in order to exercise our function of being able to hold the president accountable," he said on NBC. "If we don't do that, if we can't do that the president is effectively above the law."

Trump has yet to publicly comment on Mueller concluding his investigation, and the White House said Sunday morning that it has not received or been briefed on the special counsel's report.

 

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