Cicilline: Robert Mueller to testify May 15th

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller apparently has a date with Congress. Rhode Island Democrat Congressman David Cicilline told Fox News Sunday this morning about the possible deal for the special counsel into the Russia probe (emphasis mine).

CHRIS WALLACE: Finally, Congressman, the House Judiciary Committee, your committee, is reportedly in talks with special counsel Robert Mueller about testifying before your committee. In fact, has he agreed to testify and has a date been set?

CICILLINE: A tentative date has been set of May 15th and we hope the special counsel will appear. We think the American people have a right to hear directly from him.

WALLACE: Let me just interrupt because we’re running out of time.


WALLACE: When you say a tentative has been set, has the special counsel agreed to that date?

CICILLINE: Well, he’s — I think counsel for the special — or the representative of the special counsel has but obviously, until the day comes, we never have an absolute guarantee. The White House has so far indicated they would not interfere with Mr. Mueller’s attempts to testify, we hope that won’t change.

There’s no reason for the White House to block any attempts by Mueller to speak with the House because they’re in the clear – despite questions by those still on the “Trump is a traitor” train. Democrats will more than likely ask Mueller about the letter he sent Attorney General William Barr saying the summary of his report did not “fully capture the context, nature, and substance of this Office’s work and conclusions.” Mueller will also hopefully be questioned about The Washington Post’s report which noted he did not believe Barr’s summary was inaccurate (note to Republicans: ask Mueller this!) because it would completely put to rest the notion Trump is some kind of Russian stooge. The only people who still believe this appear to be Democrats still looking for something, anything to put Hillary Clinton in the White House which isn’t going to happen (thank Odin). Democrats just need to accept they put forward an extremely bad candidate in 2016 and move on.

Mueller will probably get questions about whether Trump attempted to obstruct the probe. The report has already explained there is no evidence the President was involved in any sort of crime involving the Russia investigation.

But the evidence does point to a range of other possible personal motives animating the President’s conduct. These include concerns that continued investigation would call into question the legitimacy of his election and potential uncertainty about whether certain events-such as advance notice of WikiLeaks’s release of hacked information or the June 9, 2016 meeting between senior campaign officials and Russians- could be seen as criminal activity by the President, his campaign, or his family.

The report reinforces what we already know. Trump is someone who is extremely worried about his image and will publicly and privately lash out. It is completely understandable – especially if one is being falsely accused of being a criminal or traitor. Yet there is a difference between having conversations with confidants on issues and directing them to do something about it. There is something to be said about a cool temperament in the face of adversity. Trump is rather lucky there were people around him who did not go along with his anger and carry out his emotional whims.

It’s doubtful Mueller’s testimony will do anything to calm Democrats and others who are so convinced Trump is some sort of Russian plant. Nor will it cause any dyed-in-the-wool MAGAphiles who believe Trump is some sort of savior to the country (like those who worshipped at the feet of his direct predecessor). Those ships have long sailed and will probably never return to port. The part of America which kept a skeptical eye on the entire scenario – and waited to pass judgment until the report was released – will probably be the most affected by Mueller’s appearance. If they bother to pay attention to it at all.

UPDATE: (Jazz) Taylor wanted me to include this update.