Attorney General William Barr said in a press conference Thursday that the White House fully cooperated with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian collusion.
Barr detailed the steps the Trump administration took to provide the special counsel’s office with information and documents throughout the probe despite the fact that they were deeply frustrated with the speculation that the Trump campaign may have colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 presidential election. (RELATED: Dems Furious Barr Will Hold Press Conference Before Releasing Mueller Report)
Barr indicated that the White House provided “unfettered access to campaign and White House documents, directing senior aides to testify freely and asserting no privilege claims,” an indication that the president did not have the desire to obstruct justice.
The attorney general also pointed out that some of the president’s actions during the probe can be tied to a “sincere belief” that the probe was the result of political opponents being unhappy with his electoral victory. The media, Barr said, also engaged in “relentless speculation” against the president:
President Trump faced an unprecedented situation. As he entered into office and sought to perform his responsibilities as president, federal agents and prosecutors were scrutinizing his conduct before and after taking office and the conduct of some of his associates. At the same time, there was relentless speculation in the news media about the president’s personal culpability. Yet, as he said from the beginning, there was, in fact, no collusion. And as the special counsel’s report acknowledges, there is substantial evidence to show that the president was frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that the investigation was undermining his presidency, propelled by his political opponents, and fueled by illegal leaks.
Barr repeated multiple times during the press conference that the underlying conclusion of the Mueller report is that there was “no collusion” with Russia on behalf of the Trump campaign.
The redacted Mueller report will be delivered to Congress and released to the public later this afternoon.