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Mueller report shows Trump aides routinely ignored his orders on crucial matters
Special counsel highlights chaotic West Wing where staff tried to save president from himself

President Donald Trump's top aides routinely ignored his orders on crucial legal matters during his first year in office, according to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Presidential orders given but often ignored. Ample cursing. Aides working behind the scenes to protect Donald Trump from his own anger and impulsiveness. And an effort to prevent the president from firing special counsel Robert S. Mueller III despite his determination to do so.

Mueller’s long-anticipated report reveals a chaotic West Wing driven by paranoia and frequent outbursts from a green president who wanted to remove the special counsel and demanded that his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, be more like predecessors Robert F. Kennedy and Eric H. Holder Jr., whom he felt “protected” the respective presidents they served, John F. Kennedy and Barack Obama.

Trump’s potty mouth survives Mueller report censors
They blacked out many a word, but they let the obscenities stand

President Donald Trump had some choice words for the special counsel’s Russia investigation, the redacted report reveals. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The special counsel’s report may be groaning with redactions, but there’s one thing the Justice Department didn’t blot out — profanity.

That’s right, we’re talking f-bombs, bastards and your garden-variety bullshit.

Trump takes victory lap on Mueller report: ‘I’m having a good day’
Jubilant president spoke at a Wounded Warrior Project event at the White House

President Donald Trump speaks during a Wounded Warrior Project event in the East Room of the White House on Thursday, the same day the Department of Justice released a redacted version of the Mueller report on Russian interference in the 2016 election. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

A jubilant President Donald Trump, eager to shape public opinion about special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s report, declared Thursday that he is “having a good day.”

Why? “It’s called ‘no collusion, no obstruction,’” Trump said during an event with wounded U.S. military personnel, adding that a probe like Mueller’s “should never happen to another president.”

Trump’s ‘Game of Thrones’ tweet: President declares ‘GAME OVER’
‘No collusion, no obstruction,’ text on latest Twitter image reads

President Donald Trump took as vindication Thursday remarks by his attorney general, William Barr, on the special counsel investigation into Russian involvement in the 2016 election. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Minutes after Attorney General William Barr delivered an across-the-board vindication of his claims of “no collusion” with Russia and “no obstruction” of justice, President Donald Trump declared victory in one of his favorite ways: using imagery of himself in the style of “Game of Thrones.”

Trump’s personal Twitter account posted an image of the president standing amid fog and the words “GAME OVER” prominently displayed. 

Barr says he has no problem with Mueller testifying before Congress
Pelosi and Schumer call for special counsel to appear before House and Senate

Attorney General William Barr testifies before a House Appropriations subcommittee on the Justice Department’s fiscal 2020 budget request on April 9. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Attorney General William Barr said Thursday he had no problem with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III testifying before Congress about his investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election or possible collusion with the Trump campaign.

“I have no objection to Bob Mueller personally testifying,” the attorney said at a news conference before the release of Mueller’s 400-page report.

The Mueller report gets a 9:30 Club kind of debut
Key questions as the hype around the Russian interference probe gets release

Attorney General William Barr will command the spotlight as the man who releases the heavily anticipated Mueller report. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Coming to a Justice Department near you: The most highly anticipated investigative report in at least a generation, special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 election, gets some pre-release hype at 9:30 EDT on Thursday in Washington before its wide release later in the day. 

Attorney General William Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will be on hand at the Justice Department to deliver the (perhaps heavily redacted) goods. So as one of the few events that could preempt “Today” and “Good Morning America” gets underway, here are some of the key questions surrounding the report. 

Senators press acting ICE director over ‘deficiencies’ at prison facilities
Democratic senators led by Warren contend no one is owning responsibility for failures

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and other Senate Democrats are pressing ICE for answers on detention facility standards. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

An investigation by Senate Democrats into the operation of ICE detention facilities by private prison companies just keeps turning up more questions.

That’s according to the latest letter from Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and 10 other Democratic caucus members, including fellow 2020 presidential candidates Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Kamala Harris of California and Cory Booker of New Jersey.

White House braces for Mueller report as obstruction questions linger
Only a ‘bombshell’ would dramatically change public opinion, expert says

President Donald Trump talks with journalists before departing the White House on March 20. He is expected to depart the White House via Marine One on Thursday just hours after a redacted version of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's report is released — and possibly take reporters’ questions about it. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images file photo)

The White House is bracing for the public’s first glimpse at some of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s findings, but it likely would take a bombshell to alter President Donald Trump’s approach to campaigning for a second term.

Attorney General William Barr is set to release on Thursday morning a version of the former FBI director’s report — though a substantial portion is expected to be blacked out, redacted that is, for legal and security reasons. White House aides have long echoed Trump’s contention that his 2016 campaign did not conspire with Russians to influence the race, besides mirroring his denials about obstructing justice since taking office.

Capitol Ink | A Visit from the Easter Barr-ney

When Fritz Hollings ‘made the turn’ as a Southern politician
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 66

Ernest "Fritz" Hollings, then-governor of South Carolina, campaigns with John Kennedy during the 1960 presidential campaign and helped JFK win South Carolina and six other southern states. Before he left office, Hollings would reverse himself on segregation and call for integration. He went on to serve in the Senate from 1966 until 2005. (CQ Roll Call file photo).

Before the late Sen. Ernest “Fritz” Hollings was elected to what would become a distinguished congressional career, the South Carolina Democrat reversed himself on the defining issue in Southern politics: segregation. 

Running for governor in 1958, Hollings opposed integration, a keystone battle in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision desegregating public schools. But by the end of his term, he said it was time for the South to change, taking a step out of line with many of his Democratic colleagues in the region.