Barr to testify before the Senate as Mueller's report looms

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US Attorney General Expected to Face Mueller Report Questions

Barr told the House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday that he hopes to release the redacted report by special counsel Robert Mueller "within a week".

Testifying before a House Appropriations subcommittee on the Justice Department's fiscal 2020 budget request, Barr underlined that some modifications would be made to the 400-page report to make some portions colour-coded and footnoted so that the public will get to know why the Justice Department chose to make such a move.

The new attorney general's budget testimony - traditionally a dry affair, and often addressing the parochial concerns of lawmakers - comes as Democrats are enraged that Barr is redacting material from the report and frustrated that his summary framed a narrative about President Donald Trump before they were able to see the full version.

Barr testified Tuesday before a congressional subcommittee, and faced Democratic lawmakers who blasted him for what they called his "unacceptable" handling of the initial summary of Mueller's report.

Barr said on Tuesday that he doesn't intend "at this stage to send the full unredacted report to the committee".

"I could envision a situation where under appropriate safeguards, that information would be shared", Barr said.

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Barr said the redactions will be color-coded and come with explanations of the specific reason that information was not made public.

Barr was testifying before the House Appropriations Committee about the Department of Justice budget, but questions about Mueller's report dominated the hearing. When asked, Barr said those details would likely be in the public version of the report. He added that he didn't know what's in the Mueller report, "but there are going to be things that maybe cause some people to say, 'Oh, gosh, I didn't know that existed.' Now, does it reach a threshold?"

When Barr released his summary on March 24, Trump tweeted that he was vindicated.

Barr also may opt to redact portions that discuss people who were investigated but not charged such as Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner.

A committee aide said the request was made in the last few weeks. Democrats have expressed concern that his version will hide wrongdoing by the president and are frustrated by the four-page summary letter he released last month that they say paints Mueller's findings in an overly favorable way for the president.

"I think attempts to hide swaths of the report from public scrutiny along the way will only fuel suspicions that have been raised by many that the Justice Department, which represents the United States, is playing the role of President Trump's defense team", said Sen.

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Barr's letter announced that Mueller did not establish the Trump campaign colluded with Russian Federation, and that he declined to take a decision on whether President Trump obstructed justice.

With the goal to discredit what's coming, Trump and his allies have unleashed a series of broadsides against Mueller's team and the Democrats pushing for full release of the final report. The reports said that some of the evidence against Trump was more damning than Barr's letter indicated.

"You're darn right I'm going after them again, " Rudy Giuliani, one of Trump's attorneys, told The Associated Press.

Critics of the Russian Federation investigation say the warrant on Page was unjustified and have also seized on anti-Trump text messages sent and received by one of the lead agents involved in investigating whether the Trump campaign was colluding with Russian Federation.

But if the concealed grand jury material seems like it is central to understanding some of Trump's most troubling behavior, or that of important figures in his orbit or in positions of power, then the impetus for Democrats to get access to the testimony will be strong.

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