CNNers Whine Mueller 'Muddied' Impeachment Waters With 'Shaky Performance'

While many on CNN were trying to keep the faith and suggest the disastrous House hearings with Special Counsel Robert Mueller were somehow going to lead to President Trump’s impeachment, some couldn’t help but admit that Mueller’s testimony was an absolute mess that hurt their cause.

During the five-o’clock-hour of CNN’s Situation Room, senior justice correspondent Evan Perez kicked off a round on criticism when he whined about how “Mueller essentially muddied the waters a lot today” when it came to impeachment.

“I think he could have been clearer in some of his answers as to what exactly happened here with what the Russians did. And it is not okay,” he continued.

Perez gave way to crime and justice reporter Shimon Prokupecz, who didn’t seem pleased that Mueller “struggled” and “didn't have a good command of the facts”.

Mueller’s command of the facts was so poor that at times it seemed as though he was learning about what was in his report for the first time, even appearing skeptical when Republican lawmakers would directly cite its contents.

“He was in charge of the investigation so we expected him at times to be able to know exactly everything that is in this report. He ran this team. But it looked like at many times he was struggling, he didn't understand a lot of questions,” Prokupecz stated before blaming the questions for being “convoluted” and “coming at him fast”.

 

 

He then decried how “the Republicans were doing what -- what you see in a lot of trials, they were just trying to discredit him in any way which way they could. In an effort to try and essentially impeach him.”

Um, you mean like what CNN and the rest of the liberal media have been trying to do for two years?

After Prokupecz spoke, host Wolf Blitzer chimed in and confessed: “It was a shaky performance. I think that’s fair to say.” Legal analyst Laura Coates agreed with Blitzer and pointed out that Mueller did not help Democrats with “the heavy lifting”.

[H]e did not live up to the hype that the Democrats said he would be able to. Also, he did not do the heavy lifting that they wanted him to do in the sense of like reading the report for them, having the perfect sound bite enunciated, and being able to bring color to the otherwise drab 448-page report,” she argued.

But Coates defended Mueller by blaming Democrats. “However, that failure does not belong to Mueller. That is more a failure of the strategy of the Democrats who thought they could hang their hats on this entirely,” she chided.

And despite Mueller’s poor performance, Coates suggested that the Democrats got everything they needed in terms of “meaty soundbites” anyway:

But in reality, he still said it’s not a witch hunt, it’s not a hoax, Russia’s interfering with our elections, They’re still doing it as we sit here today, they will continue is still continue. So, unless you actually act on it. The President may have been compromised in the respect of he had some financial thing to gain from an interaction with Russia in some way, shape or form, those are really good, meaty soundbites to have.

Whining that their chances to impeach President Trump were damaged. This is CNN.

The transcript is below, click "expand" to read:

CNN’s The Situation Room
July 24, 2019
5:12:57 p.m. Eastern

WOLF BLITZER: First of all, what did you think of what we heard from the President?

EVAN PEREZ: Well, Wolf. I think the President has said that Mueller just didn't have anything to work with and I think that is not correct. I think it is clear, as you read this -- the two volumes of the Mueller report, there is a lot here and Mueller today chose essentially not to use all of that. I think -- I understand that Mueller wants to sort of abide by this idea of staying within the four corners of what is the work product. But there is a lot of room there and he chose not to do it.

And I think obviously he was an unwilling witness. He warned the Democrats essentially that he didn't really want to be there. And he made that abundantly clear. But on a couple of occasions, especially at the beginning, he made it clear this is not an exoneration of the President. He also in an answer to a series of questions said that once the President leaves office it is possible that he could be indicted for some of his conduct.

Again those were some of the moments that we were able to get a few things out of Mueller. But on the big question of -- one of the big questions going into today was, was this report essentially a referral to Congress, to take this up and handle it in a way that the Justice Department is not allowed to because this is a sitting president. Mueller essentially muddied the waters a lot today. I think he could have been clearer in some of his answers as to what exactly happened here with what the Russians did. And it is not okay. And what perhaps the solution would be for the political branches of government to do and he did not do that.

BLITZER: Shimon, what do you think of Mueller's performance?

SHIMON PROKUPECZ: Look, I think there were times when he struggled certainly. To me it always seemed like he didn't have a good command of the facts. Right? And I think this was something that I think I thought a lot about going into this hearing: “Will Mueller have a good command? Will he know everything that’s in this report?”

He was in charge of the investigation so we expected him at times to be able to know exactly everything that is in this report. He ran this team. But it looked like at many times he was struggling, he didn't understand a lot of questions. Yes, it’s granted some of the questions were convoluted, they were coming at him fast. And the Republicans were doing what -- what you see in a lot of trials, they were just trying to discredit him in any way which way they could. In an effort to try and essentially impeach him.

So, look, I think the big thing here—I think the president makes a point here of this and this is a president who is all about performance, and so he's going to hone in on that and a lot of people, I think, are going to hone in on the fact that the performance just wasn't what I think people expected.

BLITZER: It was a shaky performance. I think that’s fair to say.

LAURA COATES: It is. And, of course, he did not live up to the hype that the Democrats said he would be able to. Also, he did not do the heavy lifting that they wanted him to do in the sense of like reading the report for them, having the perfect sound bite enunciated, and being able to bring color to the otherwise drab 448-page report.

However, that failure does not belong to Mueller. That is more a failure of the strategy of the Democrats who thought they could hang their hats on this entirely.

Remember, what did he do? He wrote a 448-page report with his overall team, did he convey it in the way that would bring color to it? No, he didn't. But that report and all of the information inside of it gave all of the tools that Congress would have needed to act in any way they saw fit. They chose to wait for the televised performance and have the movie version be better than the book. It didn't work out for them.

PEREZ: And they waited three months.

COATES: They waited three months to do so. And now they have a decision. They have to live with the consequences. This is their bed and they're lying in it.

The President, however, is hyperbolic in the statements about the great failure that it is and saying it was totally discredited their work. There are 448 pages of information to work with. Certainly, their plan was initially to say, “here, you heard it, ta-da and it is everything is great”.

But in reality, he still said it’s not a witch hunt, it’s not a hoax, Russia’s interfering with our elections, They’re still doing it as we sit here today, they will continue is still continue. So, unless you actually act on it. The President may have been compromised in the respect of he had some financial thing to gain from an interaction with Russia in some way, shape or form, those are really good, meaty soundbites to have.

(…)

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