The president is trumpeting to his supporters and anyone else who will listen that, as he insisted all along, the Mueller report found NO COLLUSION (his all caps, not mine) with Russia. In addition, he is asserting, on the shaky basis of what actually is considerable ambiguity in the report, that there was “no obstruction” either. In fact, the report made it clear that the president certainly came near the line when it came to obstruction, and may well have crossed it. Nevertheless, Robert Mueller and his team punted on this issue, concluding that there was not enough evidence to prove that case definitively and leaving it to the Congress to act on what were clearly efforts by the president to halt the investigation.

Donald Trump himself realized he was in trouble. One of the more memorable quotes in the Mueller report has the president saying “Oh, my God. This is terrible. This is the end of my presidency. I’m fucked.” Even if he may have overreacted—he is still president after all—Trump’s instincts were not far off the mark. He could well be prosecuted once he leaves office—unless, that is, he is re-elected in 2020.

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