Democrats and the broad American Left support Robert Mueller’s investigation simply because it has the potential to bring down the Trump administration. Justice is a secondary concern.
President Trump, who is known for being combative, has decided to warn Mueller about overstepping his legal restrictions. At this point, the Trump administration believes that Mueller has overrun his official authority, according to Politico.
Lawyers representing Paul Manafort and others are not waiting for the Trump administration to strike back against Mueller.
Kevin Downing, the defense lawyer for Manafort, has already filed a motion indicating that he plans to call into question the legitimacy of the Mueller investigation. Downing’s motion questions “the legal basis for and sufficiency of the charges, the suppression of evidence improperly obtained by search warrant, subpoena or otherwise.”
Given that Mueller’s investigation and his subpoenas stem from the now widely discredited Trump dossier collected by Fusion GPS, defense lawyers have a legitimate reason to question Mueller’s tactics.
After all, the whole point of the Russian probe is to investigate claims of Russian interference in the 2016 election. The accusations against Mr. Manafort stem from his work in Ukraine until 2014.
Months ago, President Trump warned Mueller’s team away from looking into his personal finances and the finances of his close associates. President Trump has since warned Mueller again that he views financial investigations outside the realm of “legitimate inquiry” insofar as the Russian probe goes.
Everything that Manafort and others have been charged with revolve around financial transactions.
Given this, Mueller has crossed a Rubicon of sorts. It remains to be seen how the Trump administration will respond to this new development.
Republicans in the House of Representatives are trying to keep Mueller’s investigation from going to court. Three of them, Florida’s Matt Gaetz, Arizona’s Andy Biggs, and Texas’ Louie Gohmert, introduced a bill designed to force Mueller to resign based on “conflict of interest.”
This assertion stems from Mueller’s time as the Director of the FBI. During the Uranium One deal, where the Obama administration sold twenty-percent of America’s uranium supply to Kremlin-backed company Rosatom, Mueller’s investigators uncovered the fact that Russian agents were involved in money laundering, bribery, and extortion.
The Obama administration went along with the deal anyway, and Mueller’s FBI voluntarily covered up their own evidence against the Russian government and Rosatom.
Other skeletons in Mr. Mueller’s closest, including his close friendship with James Comey (whom President Trump fired) and his direct involvement in the Uranium One deal (it has been reported that Mueller himself delivered highly enriched uranium to Russia), have convinced Republicans that Mueller is not very independent or apolitical.
Is Robert Mueller overstepping his bounds?
As The Hill has said, Mueller’s choices up to this point indicate that he might not be concerned about justice at all. Mueller’s use of Democratic donors and Hillary supporters as investigators also shows that his intentions may be purely political.
It seems that the trial against Manafort and company is slated to begin in the spring of next year. Democrats hope that this trial will help them to recapture Congress during that year’s midterm elections.