Journalist and Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd is known for his cool-headedness, but in reacting to reports that the Department of Justice discussed the just-released Mueller Report with the White House, he got uncharacteristically heated.
Todd was responding to a New York Times report which read:
"Justice Department officials have had numerous conversations with White House lawyers about the conclusions made by Mr. Mueller"
This didn't sit well with Todd, who pointed out that the President learning the report's contents before the public or even Congress has seen a single full sentence from the report is "actual collusion."
"In case you’re wondering what does collusion look like, it looks like the attorney general’s lawyers briefing the president before Congress or the public."
He also pointed out the double standard applied to Trump's administration in contrast to former President Barack Obama's, who faced immense scrutiny from a Republican Congress during the last six years of his presidency for far less insidious behavior.
"Where are all of these House Republicans now that were so up in arms about the president talking about Hillary Clinton’s emails when what you have here, the attorney general briefing the president of the United States on a case that involves the president of the United States. What is the difference?Straight-up politics."
Many on Twitter seemed to agree.
@thehill STRAIGHT FORWARD #COLLUSION— Wendy B🍑 (@Wendy B🍑)1555560684.0
@thehill Exactly!!— A. Carver West 🍁🍂 (@A. Carver West 🍁🍂)1555554301.0
@thehill Again when does partisan politics become criminal obstruction?— LastAct (@LastAct)1555548598.0
@thehill "Everything the republicans thought that Obama would do, Trump has laid out systematically and done" Chuc… https://t.co/USvGam5ylz— Totes Magotes (@Totes Magotes)1555549746.0
The handling of the report's release, by some standards, has been completely bungled, as has Barr's press conference pre-butting it.
Many are criticizing Attorney General William Barr, who replaced Acting AG Matt Whitaker after the first AG—Jeff Sessions—recused himself.
Some believe that Barr's hesitation to release the report, instead writing a four page summary of the 400 page document, indicates that he's trying to protect the President.
Barr is releasing a version of the Mueller report tomorrow. Remember: 1. Barr won't say whether he's been talking… https://t.co/RvUFrGPPHO— Judd Legum (@Judd Legum)1555512474.0
House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler: AG William Barr has taken “unprecedented steps to spin” Robert Mueller’s invest… https://t.co/GvZ02XQCSA— ABC News (@ABC News)1555548174.0
If the four page summary misrepresented or dismissed the actual findings of the report, Barr could face repercussions.
The Attorney General will be holding a press conference at 9:30 am, despite the report's release not being expected until this afternoon.