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The Takeaways From Robert Mueller's Testimony Before Congress46:49
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Former special counsel Robert Mueller testifies before a House Judiciary Committee hearing about his report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election in the Rayburn House Office Building July 24, 2019 in Washington, D.C. (Jonathan Ernst - Pool/Getty Images)
Former special counsel Robert Mueller testifies before a House Judiciary Committee hearing about his report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election in the Rayburn House Office Building July 24, 2019 in Washington, D.C. (Jonathan Ernst - Pool/Getty Images)

With Meghna Chakrabarti

Robert Muller has had his say before Congress. We take a look at what was asked, what was learned and whether Mueller’s testimony has an impact on divided opinions on what congressional Democrats might do next.

Guests

Paula Reid, CBS News White House correspondent focusing on the Justice Department and legal affairs. (@PaulaReidCBS)

Jill Wine-Banks, former Watergate special prosecutor. Former general counsel of the U.S. Army from 1977-1980. (@JillWineBanks)

John Eastman, professor of law and community service at Chapman University Fowler School of Law. (@DrJohnEastman) Founding Director of the Claremont Institute’s Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence.

He testified before the House Judiciary Committee earlier this month on "Lessons from the Mueller Report, Part III: 'Constitutional Processes for Addressing Presidential Misconduct.' "

From The Reading List

The Hill: "Mueller agrees lies by Trump officials impeded his investigation" — "Former special counsel Robert Mueller told Congress Wednesday that he generally agreed that lies by Trump campaign officials and administration officials impeded his nearly two-year investigation.

"Rep. Val Demings (D-Fla.) asked if other witnesses beyond those who were indicted during his probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election lied to his team of prosecutors.

"'I think there are probably a spectrum of witnesses in terms of those who are not telling the full truth and those that are outright liars,' Mueller responded, noting that it was fair to say there were 'limits' on the evidence he could access as a result.

"Denings followed up by asking if it would be accurate to say that 'lies by Trump campaign officials and administration officials impeded your investigation.'

"'I would generally agree with that,' Mueller said."

Reuters: "Explainer: What it would take for Congress to impeach Trump" — "A dark cloud of impeachment has threatened President Donald Trump for many months, with Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives, where any such effort to remove him from office would begin, divided about whether to proceed.

"In American politics, few procedures are as arduous or as divisive as the Constitution’s carefully balanced law for ousting a chief executive found to be unfit to serve.

"No president has ever been removed as a direct result of it. One, President Richard Nixon, resigned before he could be removed. Two, presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton, were impeached by the House, but not convicted by the Senate.

"Since he took office in January 2017, Trump has been under investigation. A turning point came in mid-April with the release of a redacted version of a long-awaited report from former U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

"On Wednesday, Mueller will testify before two House committees about his report, with Democrats planning to focus the proceedings on Trump’s conduct. The strategy, described by Democratic congressional aides, is intended to build support among Americans for Democrats’ investigative agenda, possibly leading to impeachment proceedings."

Politico: "Pelosi’s impeachment blockade faces biggest test yet: Mueller" — "No one will be watching Robert Mueller’s testimony Wednesday closer than Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The former special counsel’s appearance is viewed by both supporters and opponents of President Donald Trump’s impeachment as a tipping point in the debate that’s roiled Democrats — and which Pelosi has spent months working to stifle.

"For Democratic leaders, a mostly unspoken but widely understood goal since taking back the House has been to shepherd the caucus into the August recess without launching impeachment proceedings. They now have to hang on just three more days.

"Backers of the push to oust Trump don’t necessarily disagree. They see Mueller’s appearance as their best shot to deliver a jolt of momentum to the effort — or watch the steadily growing support for impeachment sputter out over the six-week break.

"When asked if Mueller’s testimony was a crossroads in the impeachment debate, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) told POLITICO: 'It could be.' "

Allison Pohle produced this hour for broadcast.

This program aired on July 25, 2019.

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