Based on his views on executive privilege, Francisco might be willing to keep the report secret, as Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani has indicated the president’s defense team would prefer.

Francisco’s role in the Bush-era U.S. attorneys’ scandal is illustrative. Back in 2007, when Congress was investigating the dismissal of nine of the nation’s top federal prosecutors for political reasons, Francisco argued against both special counsels and congressional oversight into firing decisions he believed were protected by executive power. He argued at the time that U.S. attorneys were “political appointees who may be removed by the president for any reason — good or bad — or for no reason at all.”

Mueller’s team has asked a lot of questions about the firing of FBI Director James Comey and whether it was done for improper reasons. The cover story ― provided by Rosenstein and initially put forth by the White House ― was that Comey had mistreated Trump’s presidential rival Hillary Clinton during the 2016 campaign. It didn’t seem like a plausible explanation at the time, and Trump soon revealed that he was thinking about the Russia probe when he made the decision.