A redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s final report released on Thursday gives the public their first in-depth look into the long-running investigation — including President Donald Trump’s fiery reaction to Mueller’s initial appointment.
According to the report, Trump was with then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division Jody Hunt, and then-White House Counsel Don McGahn when Deputy Attorney Rod Rosenstein made the announcement on May 17, 2017.
Notes written by Hunt — and subsequently obtained by the special counsel —reveal a candid depiction of Trump’s reaction to the appointment of Mueller.
By Hunt’s account, Trump viewed the news as the end of his time in the White House:
“Oh my God. This is terrible. This is the end of my Presidency. I’m fucked.”
Trump reportedly went on to lambast Sessions for recusing himself from the investigation, saying, “How could you let this happen, Jeff?” The report claims Trump accused Sessions of letting him down. Sessions told the special counsel that Trump said something along the lines of “You were supposed to protect me.”
Trump characterized the news as “the worst thing that ever happened” to him, according to Hunt’s notes:
“Everyone tells me if you get one of these independent counsels it ruins your presidency. It takes years and years and I won’t be able to do anything. This is the worst thing that ever happened to me.”
A footnote in the report notes that Trump took to Twitter the following morning to label the special counsel’s investigation as “the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history.”
This is the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2017
The redacted report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller is available to be read on the Department of Justice’s website.