What kind of prosecutor would make a decision about someone’s intent without even trying to talk to him? Particularly in light of Mr. Mueller’s pointed statement that his report does not “exonerate” Mr. Trump. Mr. Mueller didn’t have to say anything like that. He did so for a reason. And that reason may well be that there is troubling evidence in the substantial record that he compiled.
Furthermore, we do not know why Mr. Mueller did not try to force an interview with the president. The reason matters greatly. Mr. Mueller could have concluded that interviews of sitting presidents for obstruction matters are better done within the context of a congressional impeachment investigation (perhaps because a sitting president cannot be indicted, the Barr letter says this legal argument didn’t influence Mr. Barr’s conclusion but again is pointedly silent as to Mr. Mueller).
Or Mr. Barr could have concluded that the attorney general, not a special counsel, should carry out such an interview. The fact that Mr. Barr rushed to judgment, within 48 hours, after a 22-month investigation, is deeply worrisome.