Pascrell Responds to Mueller Statement
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09) reacted to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s press conference summarizing the findings of his investigation.
“I thank Mr. Mueller for his service to our country in this matter and throughout his career and wish him well in private life. I take three principal conclusions from his press conference.
“First, Attorney General William Barr’s claim that the Special Counsel’s non-indictment of Donald Trump was not tied to Justice Department policy was directly contradicted today by Mr. Mueller. Barr lied to the nation and should no longer occupy his office. Barr has repeatedly demonstrated that he views his job foremost not as a guardian of the rule of law, but as a bodyguard to the President. His behavior and actions are a continuing danger to stable democracy. If he does not step down from his post within a week, Congress should impeach him and remove him from office.
“Second, the long-standing Department of Justice policy granting sitting Presidents immunity from criminal prosecution that Mr. Mueller cited as the reason his office did not indict Donald Trump should be rescinded. Any policy that places any man or woman above our laws, especially our national leader, is absurd on its face and without any legitimate legal or rational defense. The Office of Legal Counsel that crafted this policy has become perverted in its unceasing loyalty to the presidency. The functioning of that office, and the office of the White House Counsel should be deeply assessed by Congress in our efforts to rein in a still-growing imperial executive.
“Third, right or wrong, Mr. Mueller made clear that he believes his findings speak for themselves and that any remedy for a President who has committed crimes lies solely in the hands of our Congress. These conclusions were clear to me after I read the report, but hearing the words from Mr. Mueller’s own mouth gives them even greater gravity. Mr. Mueller’s statement that his office could have exonerated Donald Trump but did not is nothing short of an alarm bell above the door of our republic. In addition to continuing our other investigations into rampant corruption throughout this government, Congress must proceed with an Article I inquiry of whether Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice. If, from our own inquiry, we find he did obstruct justice or committed other high crimes, then we will have no other avenue but impeachment of this President.”