There has been a whole lot of smoke around the notion that the Mueller investigation is coming to an end, and we just received confirmation that there is fire beneath that plume of smoke.
This falls right in line with the special counsel statute, and if you were expecting this report given to Barr to become public today, well, I have some bad news. Per 28 CFR § 600.8:
At the conclusion of the Special Counsel's work, he or she shall provide the Attorney General with a confidential report explaining the prosecution or declination decisions reached by the Special Counsel.
That doesn't mean we won't know what is in the Mueller Report. The fact that The Washington Post has a book titled The Mueller Report coming out soon suggests that we will. This is what Congress is for—the Department of Justice has to report to them, and it is their job to work with DOJ to filter this massively classified investigation into the public sphere.
This will take some time to unwind, and there are still multiple Trump investigations in multiple offices that will continue onward. This special counsel being done would mark a much shorter tenure than nearly all ever appointed by the DOJ, but The Washington Post reported that Robert Mueller views his mandate as investigatory, not prosecutorial. Trials take a long time. Catching stupid people doing illegal things takes significantly less.
Jacob Weindling is a staff writer for Paste politics. Follow him on Twitter at @Jakeweindling.