May 8, 2019
However, even House Republicans say they’re eager for Mueller to testify about the findings of his investigation into links between Trump’s campaign and Russia, Politico reported.
Although Republicans have largely sided with Trump’s claim that Mueller’s 448-page report absolved the president of wrongdoing, the political news outlet said, the president’s GOP House allies say they want to hear from the former FBI director.
“I think Mueller should testify,” Representative Doug Collins (Georgia), the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, said in an interview on Monday with Politico. “There was no collusion, no obstruction, and that’s what Bob Mueller will tell everyone.”
Representative Tom McClintock (R-California), another member of the same panel, said he has “a lot of questions” for Mueller. “So I hope that happens.”
Both House Republicans say their interest is less in Mueller’s report than in whether he has any insight into how the FBI launched an investigation of the Trump campaign in 2016. Trump has amplified those concerns, claiming he was targeted by Trump-hating FBI officials rather than the numerous contacts between Trump associates and Russia-linked figures.
“I think the president is just frustrated here, and I get that,” Collins added. “I’ve wanted Mueller to come before the committee all along. Then I can ask [Mueller] about how this investigation got started in the first place, what he was told about how it all began.”
Collins had previously urged Democrats to quickly call Mueller to the Capitol—even suggesting last month that they cut short a two-week recess to hear from the special counsel about his findings, Politico reports.
“I think we can agree this business is too important to wait, and Members of the Committee will surely return to Washington at such a critical moment in our country’s history,” Collins wrote at the time,—a plea that was rejected by the committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-New York) as premature.
In private, several top House Republicans believe it would be a mistake for Trump to prevent Mueller from appearing before the Judiciary Committee. To these GOP lawmakers and aides, that would allow Democrats to focus on the issue of Mueller’s non-appearance rather than the findings in his report.
Research contact: @politico