WASHINGTON(NewsLink) - Former Special Counsel Robert Mueller appeared before the House Judiciary Committee to testify on his report on Russian interference in the 2016 election on Wednesday. 

During the testimony, Republicans and Democrats both directed several questions to the former special counsel. Trump’s GOP Republican allies tried to make it seem like Mueller and his prosecutors were politically motivated. On the other hand, Democrats tried to emphasize the most controversial findings of Mueller’s 448-page report.

The Democrats hoped his testimony could reveal questionable actions by the president. Mueller avoided answering or going into much detail about these questions which could reshape steadfast public opinions.

Although many of Mueller’s answers to lawmakers’ questions were short and called for reference back to his report, he offered a few longer answers in order to stay unflinching on the critical matters.

One of those matters was the exoneration of President Trump. Within the first few minutes of the hearing, Mueller explicitly stated he did not exonerate the president. 

“Did you actually totally exonerate the president?” chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Jerrold Nadler  asked.

“No,” Mueller answered.

That still didn’t change the minds of many Republicans as many seized on the conclusion of insufficient evidence to establish a criminal conspiracy.

“Those are the facts of the Mueller report. Russia meddled in the 2016 election. The president did not conspire with Russians. Nothing we hear today will change those facts,” said Rep. Doug Collins, the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee.

Wednesday’s first hearing before the Judiciary Committee focused on the possible obstruction of justice by the president by attempting to seize control of Mueller’s investigation.

According to the Associated Press, the afternoon hearing before the House intelligence committee will dive into ties between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin.

For any comments about this story, contact the author at emharless@bsu.edu.