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Republicans Try New Maneuver In Effort To Keep Mueller’s Investigative Report Secret

Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee is urging the panel’s Democratic Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) to have special counsel Robert Mueller testify about his findings from the 22-month investigation into Russian interference, arguing that this is the best path to obtaining transparency, instead of requesting Mueller’s investigative report from Attorney General William Barr.

“If you seek both transparency and for the American public to learn the full contours of the Special Counsel’s investigation, public testimony from Special Counsel Mueller himself is undoubtedly the best way to accomplish this goal,” Collins wrote In a letter addressed to Chairman Nadler on Monday.

“To that end, Special Counsel Mueller should be invited to testify before the Committee during the week of April 22. Although the House is expected to be in recess that week, 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 continued.

The GOP lawmaker’s letter comes after Democrats on the panel voted last week along party lines to authorize a subpoena for Mueller’s investigative report as well as the underlying evidence used in the investigation.

While Nadler has signaled to reporters last week that he is interested in having Mueller testify, he also indicated he wants to see the full report before making such decisions.

Barr concluded that there was not enough evidence to charge President Trump with obstruction of justice, even after Mueller declined to make a judgment either way.

Barr’s involvement has become a flashpoint among Democrats who say they must see the full report because the attorney general, a Trump appointee, may have sought to protect the president with such an interpretation. In recent weeks, Democrats have increasingly questioned Barr’s ability to be a neutral arbiter over the probe, while also using his involvement to fuel their arguments for access to the full report.

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