Anyone else feeling the Mueller report blues? | Jean Hannah Edelstein

We wanted Robert Mueller to rescue us. The death of that fantasy entails the real work for Democrats can now begin

We should have known better. We should have known better! We should have learned from the time that we believed we were on the verge of the first female chairperson- the derivative T-shirts, the chilling champagne- merely to be acknowledged that our hopes had been dashed by a racist misogynist demagogue. Yet here we are again, a mass of deflated blue balloons, as the Monday morning headlines corroborating our worst anxieties. Robert Mueller has issued his report. And Donald J Trump is still the president, happily golfing our taxes away.

I’d like to say that I was among the sensible, maintaining a healthy skepticism that Robert Mueller would provide us with the deliverance we’ve been longing for. Sometimes, I was: as the investigation dragged on and on, with no indictments of the Trump family and no interviews with the president himself, it was hard to hold on to hope that the release of the report would be Trump’s Watergate. Yes, Mueller was known for being thorough, calm and comprehensive; that could have explained how long he was taking. But had he uncovered that the president was treasonous it seemed unlikely that he’d run through all of the evidence before alerting the nation. Two years was a very long time to maintain a heartfelt notion in the possibilities of the Mueller report. Optimism flagged.

And yet: we all find Trump as a candidate call for Russia to hack his opponents’ emails. We all watched his conduct in his Finland press conference with Vladimir Putin, and we all know as well that he’s worked to obfuscate the details of their other meetings. And most of all: we’ve witnessed Trump telling lies, all kinds of lies, from the small to the huge . Until Trump’s us attorney general, Bill Barr, declared that his boss had been exonerated, it was hard not to hold out that kernel of hope that there would be something redemptive in Mueller’s report. Something more than what we’re leave behind, which is now being letdown and ambiguity.

‘ The problems in our republic run much deeper than Trump .’ Photograph: Ting Shen/ Xinhua/ Barcroft Images

Until the report is released in full to the public- which it may never be unless some plucky intern leaks it( plucky interns, if you’re reading this, America needs you !)- we can continue to theorize on its contents, question the legitimacy of Barr’s biased decision, wonder whether there is still evidence that can lead to other indictments. We can argue about whether a Democrat would get away with this and compare it with what happened with the Starr report.

Or we can expend our time in more productive routes. It’s seducing to simplify our current political culture into a narrative of good versus evil. It would have been great if Prince Mueller had ridden in on his … file folders to rescue us all from the evil monarch. But even if the Mueller report had turned out to indicate impeachable culpability on the part of the president, the complex problems at the heart of our present political crisis would remain. Regardless of the role of Russia in the last election, Trump’s success is symptom of a racist and corrupted nation. The problems in our republic run much deeper than he.

It’s tempting to mourn the loss of the dreamings we had for Robert Mueller, fulfilling our cravings for justice- or company- with hours of analysis on MSNBC. Instead, we should take this disappointment as a prompt to reconsider who is actually doing the hard work to stimulate our country a better place right now: the activists and politicians who are pushing for institutional and cultural change that might, one day, guarantees to Trump’s regime is an anomaly , not a new norm. Democrats needs to lick our wounds quickly and start putting our money, our time and our effort behind the people we believe can start the long, hard process of repairing our country in 2020.

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