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Lawmakers make deal to delay Mueller hearing

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July 13 (UPI) — Lawmakers have made a deal to delay former special counsel Robert Mueller‘s testimony about his Russia probe one week in exchange for more time to question him.

Under the deal, Mueller will testify for three hours starting at 8:30 a.m. on July 24 about his probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and potential obstruction of justice by President Donald Trump.

Mueller was otherwise set to testify before the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees on July 17.

“This will allow the American public to gain further insight into the Special Counsel’s investigation and the evidence uncovered regarding Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and President Trump‘s possible obstruction of justice and abuse of power,” Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said in a joint statement Friday.

The agreement gives Mueller an extra hour to testify before the Judiciary panel before he gives two hours of testimony to the Intelligence Committee.

In late May, Mueller said any testimony from him before Congress would not go beyond his report.

Trump maintained his statement that he has done nothing wrong as he spoke before reporters Friday.

“There’s nothing Mueller “can say,” Trump said. “He’s written a report. It said no collusion, and it said, effectively, no obstruction. They want to go to it again and again and again because they want to hurt the president before the election.”

The report outlines 10 instances of possible obstruction by Trump and those close to him, but the Mueller team declined to decide whether to charge him in part because the Constitution requires a process other than the criminal justice system to formally accuse a sitting president of a crime.

Concluded in March, the report was the result of a two-year investigation by Mueller and his office that showed that Russia did interfere in the election to damage presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

The 448-page redacted report made clear that it looked at conspiracy law rather than collusion because collusion “is not a specific offense,” in U.S. Code or legal term in federal criminal law.

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