The all-Democratic congressional delegation from Massachusetts was fuming Thursday following the release of the highly anticipated Mueller report and the earlier press conference from Attorney General William Barr.
“It’s a disgrace to see an Attorney General acting as if he’s the personal attorney and publicist for the President of the United States,” said Senator Elizabeth Warren, a 2020 presidential candidate, in a tweet.
Warren referred to Barr’s news conference, when he said “the Special Counsel found no evidence that any Americans — including anyone associated with the Trump campaign — conspired or coordinated with the Russian government or the [Internet Research Agency] in carrying out this illegal scheme” to influence the 2016 election.
Barr also told reporters that “evidence of non-corrupt motives weighs heavily against any allegation that the President had a corrupt intent to obstruct the investigation,” according to a written transcript.
But Warren wasn’t satisfied, saying in a follow-up tweet that she wants to hear directly from Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
“This is a disgrace,” Warren tweeted over a screenshot of a redacted segment of the report. “The American people deserve answers—and Special Counsel Robert Mueller should testify publicly before Congress. #ReleaseTheFullReport.”
Representative Seth Moulton, a possible 2020 candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, also reacted strongly.
“This report is completely clear on one thing: Russia intervened in our election to help Donald Trump,” Moulton tweeted. “Presidents on both sides of the aisle have been standing up to Russia for 50 years. But Putin knew Trump would be different. We all have a right to know why.”
Moulton’s House colleague, Representative Ayanna Pressley, responded to the report in a light-hearted manner, riffing on Twitter about the redactions in the version released Thursday.
Pressley posted an image of redacted text, with a phrase interrupted by all the blackouts: “It’s . . . time . . . for . . . Mueller . . . to . . . testify.”
Representative Joseph P. Kennedy III told reporters in Boston that the report raised a number of concerns.
“Without question, there are serious allegations put forth in this report that indicate that the president of the United States and his administration, his campaign, believed that they would be aided by efforts from a foreign nation to interfere with our government, tried to cover that up, lied about it, continued to mislead the American public and the press, and after a 22-month investigation, could not be exonerated for an obstruction charge because of the evidence that was uncovered,” Kennedy said. “That is a sad day for American democracy.”
He said Congress must “fully investigate” the findings of the report.
Senator Ed Markey was similarly perturbed.
“Yes, the WH is spinning the Mueller report,” Markey tweeted. “Yes, Barr is acting like Trump’s personal lawyer. Yes, it’s disgraceful. But we also must stay focused on the larger threat: Russia is going to keep trying to influence our elections, Trump or no Trump. And we need a plan to stop it.”
Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone of Somerville, a Democratic stronghold, also piled on.
“The obstruction of justice detailed in even the redacted report is staggering,” Curtatone tweeted. “Also, we’re watching AG Barr attempt to misdirect Congress and the public in real time.”
He said in a follow-up tweet, “Quick add, Nixon’s got to be spinning like a centrifuge in his grave over this. Trump makes him look like boy scout when it comes to obstruction.”
Some Republicans in New England defended the president.
“The Mueller Report confirmed what we already knew: There was NO COLLUSION,” the New Hampshire GOP tweeted. “@SenatorShaheen and the rest of our Federal Delegation owes New Hampshire an apology for the needless investigations and taxpayer funds used on this witch hunt. #nhpolitics #LeadRight.”
And the Maine Republican Party tweeted, “Spread the news: Mueller report confirms NO COLLUSION!”
Responding to Democratic Representative Chellie Pingree’s call for the report to be released without redactions, the Maine GOP tweeted, “Shameful @chelliepingree calls on US Attorney General to break the law and expose sensitive information because Democrat witch-hunt can’t find their witch. #mepolitics.”Maria Cramer of the Globe Staff contributed to this report. Travis Andersen can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.