US Attorney General, William P. Barr, in a testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, on Wednessday said he was ”surprised” that Special Counsel Robert Mueller decided to withheld a final decision on whether President Trump obstructed justice in the course of the investigation.
“We were, frankly, surprised by that they were not going to reach a decision on obstruction. And we asked them a lot about the reason behind this and the basis for this,” Barr told members of the Senate Judiciary Committee during his testimony on Wednessday.
He further reiterated that Mueller told him about his plans in a private meeting between the two of them before the report was released.
“Special counsel Mueller stated three times to us in that meeting in response to our questioning that he emphatically was not saying that but for the Office of Legal Counsel opinion, he would have found obstruction,” said Barr to the panel.
The Attorney General further said, Mueller explained his reasoning.
“He said that in the future, the facts of the case against a president might be such that a special counsel would recommend abandoning the OLC opinion but this is not such a case,” Barr said.
Barr said that he tried to get the facts from Mueller as to why he wouldn’t make a decision, but Mueller’s response was that ”his team were still formulating the explanation”.