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House Democrats ask Barr to release full Mueller report within a week

"The release of the full report and the underlying evidence and documents is urgently needed," the lawmakers wrote in a letter to the attorney general.

By
Clyde Hughes
U.S. Attorney General William Barr delivers remarks on March 4 during a gathering of state attorneys general at the White House. Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI
U.S. Attorney General William Barr delivers remarks on March 4 during a gathering of state attorneys general at the White House. Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI | License Photo

March 26 (UPI) -- Six House Democrats are calling for U.S. Attorney General William Barr to release within a week the Justice Department's full report on Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

The Democratic chairmen of six House committees -- intelligence, judiciary, oversight, financial, foreign affairs and ways and means -- wrote a letter to Barr Monday asking for the report by next Tuesday.

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Barr sent a four-page summary last weekend of the report by special counsel Robert Mueller, which followed a nearly two-year investigation into Moscow's interference in the 2016 vote, which examined possibilities the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians. Barr's summary said Mueller's team found no evidence of collusion, but it also did not fully clear President Donald Trump's campaign on the issue of obstruction of justice.

"Your four-page summary of the special counsel's review is not sufficient for Congress, as a co-equal branch of government, to perform this critical work," the Democratic chairs told Barr in the letter. "The release of the full report and the underlying evidence and documents is urgently needed by our committees to perform their duties under the Constitution."

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Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell blocked a resolution Monday that called for Barr to release the full report. He said the attorney general should be allowed to work with Mueller on redacting secret grand jury material and any content related to ongoing investigations.

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, leader of the Senate judiciary committee, and House judiciary committee chair Rep. Jerry Nadler both said they will call Barr to testify in Congress. Graham said he wants Barr to discuss the report and the "next steps" of the Justice Department's investigation of Russia.

Nadler said he wants to ask Barr what led he and Deputy Attorney General Ron Rosenstein to decide not to recommend charges of obstruction of justice against Trump. Barr and Rosenstein said in their summary there wasn't sufficient evidence showing Trump obstructed justice, a charge that requires prosecutors to prove someone acted with "corrupt intent."

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"We may still have some responsibility to examine the conduct at issue here, even if it doesn't rise to the level of criminality," Rhode Island Rep. David Cicilline told CNN Monday.

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