Video: Demonstration at Idaho Capitol Steps Calls for Release of Mueller Report 

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Harrison Berry

The taxpayers paid for it, and now, they want to see it. That was the message submitted by nearly 100 demonstrators, organized by Indivisible Idaho, who assembled at the Idaho Statehouse steps on April 4 to call for the release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report on Russian interference in the 2016 election.

"The taxpayers pay for it, and by the rules I read, it goes from Mueller to Congress. That's the way it's supposed to work," said demonstrator Jill Parker, who carried with her a sign that read "We Paid for the Full Report" on one side, and "All 400 Pages" on the other. "Trump isn't a king. We have laws, and he's bound by them just the same as we are."

On the evening of April 3, The New York Times reported that investigators on Mueller's team took issue with Attorney General William Barr's four-page gloss on the nearly 400-page report they compiled on Russia's attempts to disrupt the 2016 election, saying the report is more damning to President Donald Trump than Barr's interpretation. At the Boise rally, attendees said the report, submitted by Mueller to Barr on March 22, was destined for Congress, but Barr has so far not forwarded the full document to the legislative branch for review.

click to enlarge HARRISON BERRY
  • Harrison Berry
"Some deus ex machina is not going to crawl out of the air ducts at the Justice Department and release the Mueller report," said Chase Johnson, a research associate at the Boise State University School of Public Service. "We're going to have to do it ourselves."

Johnson formerly worked in economic affairs at the U.S. State Department, and now teaches Russian politics. Speaking from the podium, the told demonstrators that it wasn't Russia's intent to put Donald Trump in the White House because Trump would have policies favorable to Russia—it was because sowing chaos in democracies makes it easier for Russian President Vladimir Putin to sell authoritarianism in Russia. But, he added, when Americans focus on their own politics and how ordinary people are affected, they can strengthen American institutions.

"Russia can't hack the kitchen table," he said. "Kitchen table politics is where we win this thing."

In Congress and among the American public, there is strong support for the Mueller report to come into the hands of the legislative branch. On March 29, NPR reported that 75% of Americans wanted the full report to go public. That includes 90% of Democrats, 54% of Republicans and 74% of independents.

Among them was Daniel Grad, who sat on the steps after the demonstration, still holding his placard.

"There is so much we need to know about our president, Russian interference and whether the two are linked," he said.
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