President Trump’s legal team is pushing back on the suggestion the White House could seek to keep parts of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russia probe report under wraps.
“We prefer that as much of the report as possible is public,” Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani told Fox News on Monday. “We believe a selective release would be problematic.”
Earlier Monday, Bloomberg ran a story saying the president could block portions of the report, which is believed to be in the final stages of completion. The article said the White House could attempt to use executive privilege to prevent parts of the report from being released publicly.
Giuliani said there are no plans to block the material. Still, Giuliani did not definitively rule out the president invoking executive privilege after lawyers review the report.
“We will enter that review process with no preconceptions about blocking material, but until our team reviews the report, we cannot waive executive privilege,” he said.
Mueller is only required to hand over his report to the leaders of the Justice Department, but Democrats are expected to push for a public release.
Mueller’s investigation, which was initially ordered to look into the 2016 election, has gone on for more than a year and a half. It has expanded to probe financial crimes of Trump associates before the election, conversations Trump’s national security adviser had with the Russians during the transition and whether Trump obstructed justice with his comments and actions related to the probe.
On Monday, Giuliani denied any wrongdoing on the part of the president.
“Donald Trump never met with any Russians, and the Moscow property deal never came to anything,” he said. “There was no collusion and even if there was, collusion is not a crime. We believe any obstruction argument against President Trump will fail.”
Giuliani went further, taking aim at ex-FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page over missing anti-Trump texts: "The real obstruction is the loss of text messages between FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page that would show whether Strzok’s political bias infected the Mueller investigation.”