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Press Release

Brennan Center Experts Available: Mueller Report

The Brennan Center has deep expertise on many of the issues at the core of the report, including: presidential power, securing elections from foreign interference, campaign finance laws that govern the influence of money in politics, and more.

April 18, 2019

Media Contact: Rebecca Autrey, rebecca.autrey@nyu.edu, 646-292-8316

New York, N.Y. – Experts from the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law are available to discuss Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s findings released today by Attorney General William Barr.

The Brennan Center has deep expertise on many of the issues at the core of the report, including: presidential power, securing elections from foreign interference, campaign finance laws that govern the influence of money in politics, and more.

The following experts are available to comment:

Michael Waldman is president of the Brennan Center. From his experience as a senior White House aide for President Bill Clinton, he can discuss how President Donald Trump’s actions were an abuse of power and deviated from traditional rules and norms that guided past presidents.

“The issue of whether a president has obstructed or can obstruct justice is very important: it’s not just about whether there’s enough evidence for a grand jury to bring criminal charges. We’ve always held presidents to a different standard. When it comes to presidents, it’s an abuse of power.” – WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show, 4/18/19

Lawrence Norden is deputy director of the Center’s Democracy Program. He specializes in securing election infrastructure from foreign interference, and campaign finance laws.

“The Mueller report is a reminder just 18 months before our next presidential election that a foreign power engaged in a major effort to interfere in our elections in 2016. …In the coming months, we must take additional critical steps to ensure public confidence in the 2020 elections.” – Brennan Center, 4/18/19

Wendy Weiser is director of the Brennan Center’s Democracy Program. Her work focuses on voting rights and elections, money in politics and ethics, government dysfunction, and more.

“Putting aside the striking narrative of Russian interference in the 2016 election and presidential misconduct, I am taken aback by the extremity of Attorney General William Barr’s misrepresentation of the report’s findings and seeming disregard for even the appearance of impartiality. This is a serious blow to the Department of Justice and the rule of law.” – Brennan Center, 4/18/19

Rudy Mehrbani is the Bernard and Anne Spitzer Fellow, and senior counsel in the Brennan Center’s Democracy Program. He held a variety of roles in the Obama White House, including Assistant to President Obama and Director of Presidential Personnel.

“The conduct outlined in the report is simply unimaginable and without precedent … This is why we gravely need to codify the restraints we previously assumed presidents and senior officials would follow – as recommended by our National Task Force on Rule of Law & Democracy. It’s also why Congress needs to investigate and make its own independent judgment about the president’s conduct.” – Brennan Center, 4/18/19

Daniel Weiner is senior counsel in the Brennan Center's Democracy Program. He served as Senior Counsel in the Federal Election Commission before joining the Brennan Center and is a national expert on campaign finance.

“Regardless of whether Mueller’s decision not to prosecute was correct, this is a case that seems to cry out for a civil enforcement response. ... This illustrates why it is so critical to fix the FEC. What happened in 2016 is bound to recur. We need a functional regulator to set clear rules of the road. We can’t leave it all to criminal prosecutors." @DanWeiner329, 4/18/19

 

Read a full roundup of reactions from Brennan Center experts here.

To learn more about America’s vulnerable voting infrastructure and how to protect it, click here.

To learn more about the National Task Force on Rule of Law & Democracy, click here.To set up an interview with any of the experts above, please contact Rebecca Autrey at rebecca.autrey@nyu.edu or 646-292-8316.

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