The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday to temporarily block the House Democrat demand for parts of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia collusion report after claiming that the information was important for their “ongoing impeachment investigation,” reports said.
The court’s action makes it unlikely that the report will be released in full before the 2020 election.
President Trump was impeached in December by the Democrat-controlled House and acquitted by Republicans early this year. Both votes were essentially down party line and the president criticized Democrats of conducting a witch hunt. The Mueller report fell short for many Trump-haters because it failed to identify any obvious conclusions about Trump’s conduct.
House Democrats wrote in their brief to the court that the redactions in the Mueller report “bear on whether the president committed impeachable offenses by obstructing the FBI’s and special counsel’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and his possible motives for doing so,” the New York Times reported. “The committee’s impeachment investigation related to obstruction of justice pertaining to the Russia investigation is ongoing.”
The DOJ said in its filings that the court’s action was needed because, in part, the House hadn’t given any indication it “urgently needs these materials for any ongoing impeachment investigation,”the New York Post reported.
John Solomon, the investigative journalist, wrote on Twitter that the court’s decision was “a major win for Trump.” Democrats, who refuse to let their push to nab the president die, say Trump continues to hide the truth. Joyce Alene, who says she’s an MSNBC contributor, wrote, “No one blocks a report that fully exonerates them from becoming public.”
The AP reported that the court could take up the case again in the fall. Fox News reported that Democrats wanted to obtain testimony, transcripts or exhibits into any possible influence regarding the prosecutions of Michael Flynn, Trump’s first national security adviser, and Roger Stone, his longtime adviser. The Times reported that Democrats claimed that new “areas of inquiry have arisen” since the DOJ dropped charges against Flynn and Stone was sentenced.
In Stone's case, the DOJ reversed a sentencing recommendation to Judge Amy Berman Jackson by former Mueller prosecutors that Stone should receive nine years in prison for obstructing Congress and related charges, saying it was obviously too harsh; indeed, Jackson later sentenced Stone to just three years in prison.
And, the DOJ has moved to dismiss Flynn's case entirely, citing a mountain of exculpatory material that has surfaced since his guilty plea on one count of false statements to FBI agents, even after prosecutors had assured the court they had turned over all potentially relevant documents.