As we all now well know a redacted version of the Mueller report has been released, and Barr, the Attorney General has offered to release another less redacted report to key Congressional leaders, but what does the Mueller report conclude? There seems from a range of sources that Mueller could be interpreted differently than the Attorney General initially reported. Robert Mueller seems to have had a basic concern for fairness. If a sitting President cannot be prosecuted under the policy of the Office of Legal Counsel of DOJ, then is it fair to conclude there is evidence to prosecute, if you cannot. Mueller decides it is not fair to pursue the evidence, without the opportunity of a trial, and leaves it to Congress while the President is in Office, or to prosecutors after he leaves office. NYTimes Article on Redacted Report
Mueller wrote that his evidence was not sufficient to clearly establish that the President had not committed a crime. The Attorney General, Barr insisted that it was not sufficient to establish that he had. These conclusions are fundamentally at odds. A footnote in the Mueller report points out that a criminal investigation could ultimately result in charges being brought either after a president has been removed from office by the process of impeachment or after he has left office. Mueller seems to be rejecting the defense that a president could not be guilty of obstruction of justice for the conduct in question: “The protection of the criminal justice system from corrupt acts by any person-including the President-accords with the fundamental principle of our government that ‘[n]o [person] in this country is so high that he is above the law.”
Where does this leave the report? Will it be used as a document that sets up impeachment or exonerates the President? We will know more in coming weeks, when the battle lines are drawn, and more is revealed. At the moment, there is talk from Congressional Democratic leaders that the report reveals more than the Attorney General initially reported. But it is still unclear if the report will have a devastating impact on the President’s term in office or his campaign. It will probably depend on if the American people are tired of this topic, or want the apparent offenses of the President pursued. It is likely each member of Congress is testing these waters in their Districts and listening to reactions of constituents to the report. Read more
We attended Res 2019 in Nevada, where they had a record attendance of Native Business and Tribal leaders. The work sessions included the interest Tribes and tribal businesses are showing in the production Hemp as a crop and development of Hemp products since the legalization of Hemp in the Farm Act. And, the conference provided sessions with detailed information on how to start up a tribal economic development division. There were also interesting sessions on taking advantage of the Opportunity Zone Tax incentives, created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, that offers new options for investment in economically distressed communities. Certain investors believe that the creation of Qualified Opportunity Zones will be significant.
Our firm is currently active in drafting Hemp production ordinances for clients and understanding the market for Hemp and Hemp products. We also can help clients understand the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and the potential offered by Opportunity Zones. And, many of those attending RES are part of or have started Tribal 8(a) corporations. Our firm has experience in this area as well, and won a significant case for a Tribal 8(a) that had been terminated, by reversing the agencies decision. Please let us know if we can assist you with tribal 8(a) or individual 8(a) issues in some way. We discovered at the conference that many Native 8(a) applications had been lost by SBA after the government shut down. We would very much like to assist you, if you have similar 8(a) questions or concerns.
We offer consultation and legal services for tribal owned enterprises, contractors, and other businesses in Indian Country. We can assist you with the SBA 8(a) process, understanding federal program requirements, applying for government contracts, and legal issues that arise from venturing with non Native Corporations.
In addition we can help with:
- Enacting a Tribal code for creating corporations and other business entities
- Choosing a structure that best serves your business needs
- Obtaining Tribal 8(a) certification and status
- Forming a business under appropriate law
- Seeking joint venture partners
- Understanding government regulations and impact on business
- Contacting the federal government procurement offices.