Top Mueller prosecutor: "We could have done more"

Former special counsel Robert Mueller. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Andrew Weissmann, one of former special counsel Robert Mueller's top prosecutors, says in his new book, "Where Law Ends: Inside the Mueller Investigation," that the probe "could have done more" to take on President Trump, per The Atlantic.

Why it matters … Weissmann argues that the investigation's report didn't go far enough in making a determination regarding Trump's potential obstruction of justice: "When there is insufficient proof of a crime, in volume one, we say it. But when there is sufficient proof, with obstruction, we don’t say it. Who is going to be fooled by that? It’s so obvious."

  • "Had we given it our all—had we used all available tools to uncover the truth, undeterred by the onslaught of the president’s unique powers to undermine our efforts?" Weissmann asks in the book's introduction.
  • "Part of the reason the president and his enablers were able to spin the report was that we had left the playing field open for them to do so."

Flashback: In its report, Mueller's team compiled 10 different episodes where Trump may have potentially committed obstruction of justice.

  • The document's final words: "Accordingly, while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him."
  • That allowed Attorney General Bill Barr to say that the Department of Justice had concluded that the evidence was "not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense," noting that the government would have to prove such a case "beyond a reasonable doubt."

The bottom line: Weissmann told The Atlantic that Mueller "absolutely" let the American people down — before hedging that "the office" had done so — and agreed that the investigation had been "a historic missed opportunity."

Go deeper: 7 takeaways from the Mueller report

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