Washington – A federal judge prepared a Trump-era Justice Department legal memorandum for Attorney General William Barr before announcing the conclusion that President Donald Trump did not interfere with the judiciary during the Russian investigation. I ordered the announcement of.
The Justice Department has refused to submit a March 24, 2019 memorandum of understanding to the government’s Transparency Group, which requested it under the Information Disclosure Act. This document represents the attorney’s personal advice and was prepared before a formal decision was made and is therefore exempt from disclosure under the Public Records Act.
But in Barr’s sharp accusations, Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the US District Court said he had obscured “the true purpose of the memorandum” when the Justice Department withdrew the document.
She said the memo from the Office of Legal Counsel of the Department of Justice contained “strategic rather than legal advice” and that both writers and recipients already understood that Trump would not be prosecuted. .. Government agencies may withhold disclosure documents that reflect internal deliberations before a decision is made, but the protection does not apply in this case because the conclusions have already been reached, the judge wrote. It was.
“In other words, a review of the document reveals that the Attorney General was not subsequently involved in the decision on whether the president should be prosecuted for obstruction of justice. The fact that he is not prosecuted It was natural, “Jackson said in an order on Monday.
Even if Special Advisor Robert Swan Mueller and his team did not reach that conclusion, the decision by Bar and senior Judiciary leaders to remove Trump’s obstruction was an important moment he advertised as proof.
Barr published a summary of Mueller’s report a month before the entire 448-page document was published, helping to shape public awareness of the findings of the study in a way that favored Trump. Mueller then complained to Barr that his summary did not fully capture the findings and caused “national turmoil.”
In her order this week, Jackson accused Barr of the general treatment of Mueller’s report, saying, “Characterizing what he had little time to skim, let alone scrutinize, is what politicians and experts say. Mike and the Twitter feed to blame what they were afraid of were trying to hide the ball. ”
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The judge ordered the Justice Department to publish a Trump obstruction memo
Source link The judge ordered the Justice Department to publish a Trump obstruction memo