The Mueller and Inspector General Reports Should Be Released Simultaneously
Rep. Adam Schiff — a man whose love affair with the TV camera is legendary — is now utilizing his cherie amour and his new position as chair of the House Intelligence Committee to demand that, upon completion, the Mueller/Russia investigation report be published in its entirety — that is, with no redactions, emendations, or edits, for whatever purpose by the attorney general. He's even threatening to subpoena Mueller or sue the Justice Department if the full report is not released.
Notwithstanding his risible and tedious grandstanding, the congressman has a point, if only by attrition. Based on past performance, details of similar documents that were kept from public view would be leaked in around ten minutes anyway. And — again based on past performance, including Schiff's on multiple occasions — we will have no immediate way of knowing the accuracy of those leaks, although there's a safe bet they will range from misleading spin to outright lies.
So why not? Let's have transparency. (I know. I know. National security and all that. But I suspect whatever NatSec issues that would crop up have long since been washed down the email drain. It's more likely people are hiding behind phony ones.)
Nevertheless, if we're going to have transparency, let's have real transparency, from both sides. It would be in the interest of what Barack Obama frequently referred to as "fairness."
A significant percentage, evidently growing, of the population believes that the Russia probe itself was, putting it mildly, a cold-blooded political dirty trick to prevent the election of Donald Trump and, after that occurred and despite those efforts, seriously to undermine his presidency. If this is true, and the accusations that the meretricious Steele dossier — fed by the Russians and paid for by the Clinton campaign — was the primary instrument used by the DOJ to induce the FISA court to authorize spying on Americans, then we have on our hands the most despicable attack on the democratic process in our nation's history. The roots, the impetus for this subversion, some think, go astonishingly high.
Either way, this has to be cleared up. But how? I have a suggestion that is imperfect, as I will note, but a way to start.
The Mueller report and the inspector general's (Michael Horowitz) next report, the one that is supposed to deal with these disputed FISA decisions and related accusations of FBI/DOJ bias and their roots, should be published simultaneously, neither one redacted. That way we, the people who pay for both, can see if Mueller's investigation was worth our time and money or whether it was indeed the "fruit of a poisonous tree," as David B. Rivkin Jr. and Elizabeth Price Foley wrote in the Wall Street Journal last June.
Similarly, we will be able to see if the inspector general is pulling his weight, fully investigating what transpired no matter where it leads, or whether he might be involved in a sophisticated coverup of his own — the Deep State's deepest cover.
In order to have a semblance of "fairness" and resolve these contentious issues even to a small degree, these two reports must be given equal weight and be published at as close to the same moment as possible.
Now, the problem: In truth, as many readers are undoubtedly thinking, this parity of release is unlikely to happen and, even if it did, the MSM would do its best to downplay, if not ignore, the IG's report. His report would also most likely be tardy — Horowitz was slow with the Clinton report — making it easier to dismiss as an afterthought and even easier for the MSM to employ their usual de facto censorship of ideas (and facts) they find inhospitable.
Moreover, Horowitz's Clinton report — despite exposing numerous malefactions on the part of the DOJ — bowdlerized its conclusion, possibly under the influence of Rod Rosenstein, allowing many of those same malefactors to escape punishment and in some cases even criticism, at least so far.
Rosenstein, however, will soon be gone. (Not surprisingly, he now questions the idea of government transparency. Not a lot of trust in us from old Rod for some reason.) Now William Barr will be running the show. It's not clear to what degree it is within the new AG's control to coordinate the release of these two reports, but in the public interest, he should try as much as possible to do so. Not only is one without the other insufficient, it takes us one step closer to being a Banana Republic. Perhaps we already are.
It's up to you, Mr. Barr. Save us. As you know, America is owed the whole truth and nothing but.
Roger L. Simon is the co-founder and CEO emeritus of PJ Media.