WASHINGTON — Testimony by former special counsel Robert Mueller will be delayed one week as a longer Capitol Hill appearance is negotiated, the House Judiciary Committee and the House Intelligence Committee announced Friday.
Mueller had been scheduled to testify publicly before the committees on Wednesday about his two-year investigation into Russian attempts to influence the 2016 election and possible collusion and obstruction by President Donald Trump.
The testimony will now take place one week later, on July 24, and are scheduled to start at 8:30 a.m.
The hearings will occur just two days before the House is expected to go on a six-week recess, giving Democrats little time for any immediate post-hearing action on Capitol Hill.
A number of lawmakers, especially Republicans, had complained about the time limits that would be imposed for questions in each hearing. The restrictions suggested that some members of the Judiciary Committee would not have the opportunity to ask questions.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., downplayed the concerns at her weekly news conference Thursday.
“We’re very pleased that the special counsel — the former special counsel will be coming. But I have confidence in our committee chairs, Mr. Nadler in terms of the Judiciary Committee and Adam Schiff in terms of the Intelligence Committee. They’ll handle it very well. I wish we had more time, but I’m glad we have the time that we have.”
Mueller agreed to offer public testimony after Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., and Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., issued subpoenas late last month.
When Mueller spoke publicly for the first time about the Russia investigation in late May, he indicated that he did not want to testify before Congress about the probe or the report his team had produced. “I hope and expect that this is the only time that I will speak to you in this manner,” he said at the time.
“There has been discussion about an appearance before Congress. Any testimony from this office will not go beyond our report. It contains our findings and analysis and the reasons for the decisions we made,” he added. “The work speaks for itself. The report is my testimony.”
Since the Mueller report’s release, a number of Democrats have called for the Judiciary Committee to initiate a presidential impeachment inquiry. As of July 12, 84 Democrats and one independent, Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan, support opening one.
Boris Johnson on Brexit: What does Boris REALLY think about Brexit? What will he do?
Who is Robert Mueller, the man behind the report on Trump?
He’s a Republican born into a wealthy family in New York who attended a tony prep school, graduated an Ivy League university, is known for his trademark suits and hair — and isn’t someone you want to be on the wrong side of.
Robert Swan Mueller III is also the man behind the most highly anticipated document in the country — the special counsel report, submitted to Attorney General William Barr on Friday, on whether Donald Trump’s presidential campaign was involved with Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 election.
Pressure is unlikely to rattle Mueller, 74, who was named special counsel in May 2017. A decorated Vietnam War hero, he was the second longest-serving FBI director in the history of the agency, which he took over one week before the 9/11 terror attacks.
Author Garrett Graff, who has interviewed the media-averse Mueller at length over the years, told The Guardian he is “probably America’s straightest arrow, very by-the-book, very professional.”
In a 2017 speech at his granddaughter’s high school graduation, Mueller exhorted the students to live their lives with “integrity, patience and humility.”
“Whatever we do, we must act with honesty and with integrity, and regardless of your chosen career, you’re only as good as your word,” Mueller told the graduates. “If you are not honest, your reputation will suffer, and once lost a good reputation can never, ever be regained.”
Mueller was born in New York City in 1944, and raised outside of Philadelphia. His father was a World War II Navy veteran and an executive at DuPont.
“A lie was the worst sin” in his household, Mueller once told Graff. “The one thing you didn’t do was to give anything less than the truth to my mother and father.”
He attended Princeton, where he said he was inspired to enlist in the Marines by a classmate who had been killed in the conflict. Mueller’s first attempt to sign up was unsuccessful because of an injured knee. It took him a year to rehab the injury — time he also used to earn a master’s degree in international relations and marry high school sweetheart Ann Standish, a teacher. He was then given the green light to go into officer training at Quantico, Virginia.
His success there got him sent to elite Army Ranger training before he was shipped off to Vietnam as a Marine lieutenant and rifle platoon leader in 1968. He was awarded several commendations, including one for rescuing a wounded Marine under heavy enemy fire, and another for holding his position and fighting on even after he’d been shot through the leg.
“Although seriously wounded during the firefight, he resolutely maintained his position and, ably directing the fire of his platoon, was instrumental in defeating the North Vietnamese Army force,” the Navy commendation read.
He left the Marines after being placed on desk duty following his combat tour, but still considers those three years the most important of his life.
“The lessons I learned as a Marine have stayed with me for more than 40 years,” he told his granddaughter’s class. “The value of teamwork, sacrifice, discipline — life lessons I could not have learned in quite the same way elsewhere.”
Mueller became a prosecutor in 1976 after graduating law school and doing a brief stint in private practice.
He rose through the ranks at U.S. attorney’s offices in California and Boston before landing at the Justice Department, where he was involved in high-profile prosecutions of the bombers in the 1988 Pan Am Flight 103 attack over Lockerbie, Scotland, and of the mob boss John Gotti.
He was nominated as FBI director by President George W. Bush, and unanimously confirmed by the Senate.
He was sworn in on Sept. 4, 2001 — one week before the country was hit with the deadliest terror attack in history, coordinated passenger jetliner attacks that killed thousands in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania.
Mueller said in a briefing in the days after the attack that Bush asked him, “What is the FBI doing to prevent the next terrorist attack?”
“That was the question that was asked on that day that I did not have an answer to,” Mueller recalled in a 2014 speech. And he said he made it the FBI’s main mission.
“No longer could our metric be the number of arrests, number of indictments, number of convictions,” he said. “It was answering that one question.”
There has not been a large-scale terrorist attack in the country since.
Mueller and then-acting Attorney General James Comey nearly quit their jobs in protest in 2004, when White House officials quietly reauthorized a secret post-9/11 domestic surveillance program against the recommendations of the Justice Department. The pair took their concerns directly to Bush, who ordered the program restructured, Comey later told the Senate.
Mueller’s 10-year term was extended for two years by President Barack Obama and a unanimous Senate vote. He was succeeded by Comey and returned to private practice as a partner at the law firm of WilmerHale in Washington, D.C. Among his clients in the reported $3.4 million a year job were Facebook, Apple and the National Football League.
He continued living at the longtime Georgetown home he shares with his wife of 52 years. They have two grown daughters and three grandchildren.
Trump fired Comey on May 9, 2017, and told NBC News’ Lester Holt two days later that he’d done so in part because of his frustration over the Russia investigation.
On May 16, Trump interviewed Mueller about coming back to his old job. A day later, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein named Mueller as special counsel in charge of the Russia probe.
While Trump has belittled Mueller as “a conflicted prosecutor gone rogue” who’s running a “witch hunt” of an investigation, Mueller and his team have not responded publicly to the president’s criticisms.
He once told Graff the importance with which he views self-control.
“I’ve always made my bed and I’ve always shaved, even in Vietnam in the jungle. You’ve put money in the bank in terms of discipline,” Mueller told him. “Once you think about it — do it.”
Mueller felt Vietnam had prepared him for anything.
“You see a lot, and every day after is a blessing,” he said in 2008. “A lot is going to come your way, but it’s not going to be the same intensity.”
World6 days ago
Netflix earnings Q2 2019
Politics1 week ago
Arizona Gov. Ducey has change of heart for Nike following Betsy Ross flag controversy
World1 week ago
US proposes barring tech companies from offering financial services
Politics1 week ago
Brexit Party threatens Strasbourg chaos in EU takedown 'can you smell Verhofstadt's fear?'
Latest News1 week ago
Relief in New Orleans but authorities warn Storm Barry is not over yet | US News
World1 week ago
China GDP data, oil, currencies in focus
Politics1 week ago
House votes to require congressional approval for military strike against Iran
Politics1 week ago
Cory Booker aims to give aging prisoners ‘a second look’