In a rare and poignant statement, Special Counsel Robert Muller noted that charging President Donald Trump was not an option his office could consider.
“If we had confidence the President clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so,” Mueller said. “We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime. The introduction to Volume Two of our report explains that decision. It explains that under longstanding department policy, the president can not be charged with a federal crime while in office — that is unconstitutional — even if the charge is kept under seal and hidden from public view.”
In what he said would be his only comments on his nearly two-year inquiry, he said that while Justice Department policy prohibits charging a sitting president with a crime, the Constitution provides for another process — a clear reference to the ability of Congress to impeach the president.
Muller also stressed that Russia’s systematic effort to interfere with the 2016 presidential election “deserves the attention of every American.”