Acting AG: Mueller probe is 'close to being completed'

Acting attorney general Matthew Whitaker said Monday that special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerSpeier says impeachment inquiry shows 'very strong case of bribery' by Trump Gowdy: I '100 percent' still believe public congressional hearings are 'a circus' Comey: Mueller 'didn't succeed in his mission because there was inadequate transparency' MORE’s probe is “close to being completed.”

Whitaker told reporters at a press conference that he has been “fully briefed on the investigation.”

“I hope that we can get the report from Director Mueller as soon as possible,” he said.

ADVERTISEMENT

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump reversed course on flavored e-cigarette ban over fear of job losses: report Trump to award National Medal of Arts to actor Jon Voight Sondland notified Trump officials of investigation push ahead of Ukraine call: report MORE and Republican allies for months have called for a conclusion to the investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election; the president has repeatedly attacked the effort as a "witch hunt."

The comments by Whitaker come days after longtime Trump ally Roger StoneRoger Jason StoneLawmakers spar over upcoming Sondland testimony Himes: 'I don't think it blows a hole in the case' if Sondland testifies there was no quid pro quo Gates sentencing set for next month MORE was indicted as part of Mueller's probe. The indictment alleges that Stone made false statements, engaged in witness tampering and interfered with a congressional investigation.

The indictment, unsealed on Friday, claims that Trump campaign staff were directed to ask Stone what documents WikiLeaks had in its possession that could be damaging to the Clinton campaign. WikiLeaks distributed stolen Democratic emails in the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election, which Mueller has alleged were hacked by Russian military officers.

The White House has said the charges have "nothing to do" with the president. Stone has denied the allegations and is promising to fight the indictment in court.

Mueller has indicted several Trump campaign officials in the course of his probe since he was appointed in May 2017, including former Trump campaign head Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortGates sentencing set for next month Yovanovitch says John Solomon's columns were used to push false allegations Trump bemoans 'double standard' in Stone conviction MORE and former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Whitaker also made his comments amid speculation over whether the public will be able to review the full contents of Mueller's report when the probe is concluded.

William Barr, Trump's nominee for attorney general, declined to commit to releasing the full report during his confirmation hearing earlier this month. He said he would have to follow Department of Justice guidelines in determining how the report is released.

Sens. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyBooker, Sanders propose new federal agency to control drug prices GOP eager for report on alleged FBI surveillance abuse Johnson opens door to subpoenaing whistleblower, Schiff, Bidens MORE (R-Iowa) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) also dropped legislation Monday requiring that reports issued by any special counsel be publicly released.

--Updated 5:43 p.m.