J.E. Dyer US politics

J.E.Dyer: Barr vs. Mueller on ‘obstruction’: Anatomy of an epic chess move……?




Andrew Weismann, “Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s right-hand man” will go down in history as destroying the jobs for more than 80 000 people who worked for Enron, then having his prosecution overturned by the US Supreme Court 9-0, in a rare unanimous decision.


Barr vs. Mueller on ‘obstruction’: Anatomy of an epic chess move?

A very interesting article appeared at Human Events on Wednesday.  Will Chamberlain, a lawyer and the publisher of Human Eventslaid out an argument that centers on interpretation of the federal statute used by Robert Mueller for his consideration of obstruction charges as regards the “Russia-Trump” investigation: 18 U.S.C. § 1512(c)(2).


The short story on this is that the Mueller team decided to pin its deliberation of the obstruction issue to 1512.  There are a number of other obstruction-related statutes (see the Chamberlain piece, as well as the tweet thread from @JohnWHuber below).  But none of them was arguably relevant in a situation with no predicate crime and no pending legal proceeding.


The current attorney general, William Barr, disagreed strongly with the Mueller team’s reasoning about 1512, and in June 2018 – while in private practice – forwarded a brief on the matter to Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein, who at that point was the supervising authority for the special counsel.  The situation thus boiled down to dueling interpretations of 1512.


This sounds like an eye-wateringly arcane legal dispute.  And it is.  But two important windows of insight into its significance have been afforded by @JohnWHuber (“Undercover Huber”) and Will Chamberlain.


More here.

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