US President Donald Trump gloated on Twitter on Thursday upon the release of the Mueller report, which found there was found no evidence the Trump campaign colluded with Russia.

Tweeting ahead of the release of the 448-page document to the public, Mr Trump called the investigation into Russian election meddling "The Greatest Political Hoax of all time!"

He even celebrated by sharing a bizarre Game of Thrones meme of himself with the words "game over" and a video mash-up of himself saying "no collusion".

But the findings of the report, which was delivered to Congress on CDs just after 11am on Thursday (1am Friday AEST) and posted on the special counsel's website don't totally exonerate US President Trump.


Here are the highlights of the 448 page report.


Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation was unable to "conclusively [determine] that no criminal conduct occurred."

The special counsel team said in the report:

"If we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President clearly did not commit obstruction of justice, we would so state. Based on the facts and the applicable legal standards, however, we are unable to reach that judgment. The evidence we obtained about the President's actions and intent presents difficult issues that prevent us from conclusively determining that no criminal conduct occurred. Accordingly, while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him."


Donald Trump reacted with dismay when told a special counsel had been appointed to look into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, according to the Mueller report.

Trump was informed on May 17, 2017 of the appointment of former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel by then-Attorney-General Jeff Sessions, the report said.

"When Sessions told the president that a special counsel had been appointed, the President slumped back in his chair and said, 'Oh my God. This is terrible. This is the end of my presidency. I'm f***ed,'" the report said, citing notes from the meeting.

Trump then became angry at Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation because of his prior contacts with Russian officials, it said.


"The president became angry and lambasted the Attorney-General for his decision to recuse from the investigation, stating 'How could you let this happen, Jeff?'" the report said.

"Everyone tells me if you get one of these independent counsels it ruins your presidency," Trump was quoted as saying.

"It takes years and years and I won't be able to do anything.

"This is the worst thing that ever happened to me," Trump added.


In addition to Trump's reaction to Mueller's appointment, the report also provided details of the president's efforts on several occasions to have the special counsel removed.

The report says that in June 2017, Trump directed White House Counsel Don McGahn to call the acting Attorney-General and say that Mueller must be ousted because he had conflicts of interest.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller's redacted report that includes written answers from US President Donald Trump as released yesterday. Photo / AP
Special Counsel Robert Mueller's redacted report that includes written answers from US President Donald Trump as released yesterday. Photo / AP

McGahn refused — deciding he would rather resign than trigger what he regarded as a potential "Saturday Night Massacre" of Watergate firings fame.

After Trump fired then FBI Director James Comey in May 2017, he continued to do what he could to slow or stop the investigation.

"At that point, the president engaged in a second phase of conduct involving public attacks on the investigation, non-public efforts to control it, and efforts in both private and public to encourage witnesses not co-operate with the investigation," according to the report.

For all of that, Mueller said in his report that he could not conclusively determine that Trump had committed criminal obstruction of justice.

The report notes that Trump may have been able to obstruct justice if people around him hadn't stopped him.

"The President's efforts to influence the investigation were mostly unsuccessful, but that is largely because the persons who surrounded the President declined to carry out orders or accede to his requests," the report said.

Mueller did not make a judgment on whether Trump committed an offence, but the report said it does not exonerate him either.


The special counsel looked into whether Trump learned during the presidential campaign of rumoured compromising tapes made of him years earlier when he visited Moscow and stayed at the Ritz-Carlton. The tape, referred to in an unverified dossier compiled on Trump and published by Buzzfeed in 2017, supposedly showed him being urinated on by prostitutes.

According to a footnote in the Mueller report, in October 2016 former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen got a text message from Russian businessman, Giorgi Rtskhiladze, that said: "Stopped flow of tapes from Russia but not sure if there's anything else. Just so you know …"

Rtskhiladze told the special counsel investigation the "tapes" referred to "compromising tapes of Trump rumoured to be held by persons associated with the Russian real estate conglomerate Crocus Group."

Cohen told the special counsel he spoke to Trump after receiving Rtskhiladze's text.

Rtskhiladze told prosecutors that he was told the tapes were fake, but that he didn't convey that to Cohen.


The US Congress still has the ability to find Trump obstructed justice with his efforts to seize control of the Russia probe and force the special counsel's removal.

In special counsel Robert Mueller's report, the team writes that:

"With respect to whether the President can be found to have obstructed justice by exercising his powers under Article II of the Constitution, we concluded that Congress has the authority to prohibit a President's corrupt use of his authority in order to protect the integrity of the administration of justice."


The Trump campaign "expected" benefit from Russia's meddling but didn't take steps to help, the report said.

"Although the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts, the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or co-ordinated with the Russian government in the election interference activities."

The report also describes in great detail the various links between the Trump campaign and Russia, although there was no evidence of collusion.

"The Russian contacts consisted of business connections, offers of assistance to the campaign, invitations for candidate Trump and Putin to meet in person, invitations for campaign officials and representatives of the Russian government to meet, and policy positions seeking improved US-Russian relations," Mueller wrote in the report.

The report features many blacked-out sections, but Attorney-General William Barr says a version of special counsel Robert Mueller's report with fewer redactions will be made available to a small group of politicians.

In a letter to Congress on Thursday, Barr said the second version of the report would be given to the "Gang of Eight," the top-ranking House and Senate politicians from both parties who can view sensitive classified information. The chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate judiciary committees will also receive it.

Barr said all redactions would be removed from that version of the report except those relating to grand-jury information.

The Attorney-General said, "I do not believe that I have discretion to disclose grand-jury information to Congress. Nevertheless, this accommodation will allow you to review the bulk of the redacted material for yourselves."

Meanwhile, Congress' top Democrats are calling for special counsel Robert Mueller to appear before Congress "as soon as possible" to testify about his report on Russia election meddling and contacts with the Trump campaign.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement on Thursday that Attorney-General Barr's "partisan handling" of Mueller's report has "resulted in a crisis of confidence in his independence and impartiality".

Pelosi and Schumer criticised Mueller's plan to "spin the report in a press conference" before allowing Congress and the public to see it. They said "the American people deserve to hear the truth."

For a searchable version of the Mueller report, click here.