The hashtag #MuellerTime suddenly trended on Twitter Tuesday evening, shortly after House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler announced, via his own Twitter account, that former Russia investigation special counsel Robert Mueller will testify about his findings to Congress in an open, public session on July 17. Nadler said in his announcement that the 74-year-old Mueller agreed to testify after the House issued a subpoena, on Tuesday, for his appearance before Congress.
“We look forward to having Mr. Mueller testify, as do all Americans,” Nadler said in his announcement.
Mueller can look forward to spending his entire day testifying, as both the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees will hold separate open sessions to hear Mueller’s testimony, according to a report by CNN. After Mueller concludes his public testimony to the Intelligence committee, he will then testify a third time, this time behind closed doors, to discuss details of the counterintelligence portion of his investigation, Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff told CNN.
Mueller’s private testimony is likely to contain the most explosive details he will discuss, according to Lawfare columnist Nate Jones, who wrote, “counterintelligence is always where the action was going to be.”
While Mueller in his report, published online by The New York Times, said that he found “insufficient evidence” to criminally charge Trump or any member of his campaign for conspiracy with Russia to tamper with the 2016 election, the counterintelligence probe — which received little mention in Mueller’s report — may have reached broader conclusions. The counterintelligence investigation into Russia’s election interference was not focused on criminal charges, but its purpose instead was to “identify and mitigate threats posed by foreign governments,” Jones wrote.
“Why is #MuellerTime so important?” asked California congressional Representative Ted Lieu on his Twitter account.
“Because the American people hear from Special Counsel Robert Mueller unfiltered, without the interference of [Attorney General] Bill Barr.”
Lieu is a member of the Judiciary Committee, according to House.gov, and will be among those questioning Mueller on July 17.
— Quiet Star (@QuietStarNJ) June 26, 2019
even if Robert Mueller just reads what's in the report, that should be good enough for some people to hear his words, not someone else's interpretation #MuellerTime
— Warren Parker (@waparker536) June 26, 2019
In his first and only public remarks since his appointment as special counsel, delivered in a brief speech May 29, Mueller warned that his report was “my testimony,” adding, “I would not provide information beyond that which is already public in any appearance before Congress,” as The Inquisitr reported.
But as former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti noted via Twitter, even if he refuses to discuss anything beyond what is contained in the report, Mueller’s testimony will nonetheless, in Mariotti’s view, serve an important purpose.
“This will really matter, even if Mueller merely repeats what he said in his report,” the former prosecutor said. “The vast majority of Americans have never read it.”