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

Acting attorney general Matthew Whitaker said Monday that special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel 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.

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President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump PACs brought in over M for the first half of 2021 Chicago owes Trump M tax refund, state's attorney mounts legal challenge Biden hits resistance from unions on vaccine requirement 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 StoneCould Andrew Cuomo — despite scandals — be re-elected because of Trump? Has Trump beaten the system? Trump is on the ballot whether his name is there or not 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 ManafortLobbyist Tony Podesta returns to work for Huawei Former bank CEO convicted of bribery in scheme to land Trump admin job Trial begins for Chicago banker who exchanged loans with Manafort for Trump job 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 GrassleyChuck GrassleyBiden's bipartisan deal faces Senate gauntlet The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - US gymnast wins all-around gold as Simone Biles cheers from the stands The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - A huge win for Biden, centrist senators 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.