I think the Mueller report was always doomed to be a letdown, because it was an artifact of a different time: an investigative report produced by a respected arbiter which would then be turned over to proper legal channels for appropriate action. This might have worked years ago, but it was never going to function under a 21st century GOP administration, because that sort of process relies on a system that respects process and has room for shame and consequences. That’s not what we have right now.
William Barr – who was hired to do just this, put a “respectable” face on a whitewashed stonewalling – has fulfilled his mandate: filter things in such a way that “exoneration” becomes the cat-toy the press uncritically bats around. Nancy Pelosi knew this, which is why she’s been working to downplay the notion of impeachment for weeks now. She knew damn well that there would never be 67 votes in the Senate, at which point, you do yourself more harm than good. There’s still plenty to investigate, and the report will provide a fine jumping-off point for House hearings on all manner of topics (as well as ones that have been back-burnered ahead of the report), and that will be fine.
Because we were never going to be let off the hook for this. There’s no get out of election free card. There’s no undo option. The only way we are going to end this is at the ballot box, by a big enough margin that it can’t be bent or played off or rigged. Infinity Stones aren’t real, there’s no going back through the quantum realm, we have to ride this turd all the way to the ground and hope we survive the splatter.