President Donald Trump directed a tweet on Tuesday morning toward former Russia investigation special counsel Robert Mueller, urging him to not deviate from his report’s findings when he testifies before Congress later this month.
“Robert Mueller is being asked to testify yet again. He said he could only stick to the Report, & that is what he would and must do,” Trump wrote.
The president once again called the investigation a “witch hunt,” claiming that there was “No Collusion, No Obstruction” found by Mueller.
Robert Mueller is being asked to testify yet again. He said he could only stick to the Report, & that is what he would and must do. After so much testimony & total transparency, this Witch Hunt must now end. No more Do Overs. No Collusion, No Obstruction. The Great Hoax is dead!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 2, 2019
That contradicted what Mueller himself has said regarding his report. At the end of May, Mueller, while he was announcing his stepping down from the special counsel’s office, stated clearly and confidently that his report’s findings could not exonerate Trump from any acts of wrongdoing.
“If we had confidence the President did not commit a crime, we would have said so,” Mueller said, per reporting from Politico. Mueller is set to testify on July 17 before two congressional committees regarding his eponymous report.
Trump’s previous views on Mueller testifying on the investigation have run the gamut. In early May, the president indicated he had a carefree attitude about it, suggesting he had no objection to Mueller doing so, NBC News reported.
Days later, that changed. Trump stated definitively, in a pair of tweets, that Mueller “should not testify” before Congress, per a report from CNN.
Despite A.G. Barr's characterization of the White House as 'fully cooperative,' "Mueller wrote about numerous instances in which witnesses lied or withheld information, deleted communications and used encrypted messaging applications." https://t.co/Yn02BaM6NL
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) July 1, 2019
Trump’s comments today do not indicate he doesn’t want Mueller to testify, but rather that he doesn’t want Mueller to answer any other questions about the investigation beyond what was written down in the report.
Mueller had expressed a preference to not testify before, stating that the report would be his “testimony,” Newsweek reported. But late last month, after the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees both subpoenaed him to appear before them, Mueller agreed to testify in person.