As far as we can tell, Robert Mueller has only one thing to show for his time as special counsel.
If we recall that Mueller was originally appointed to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 election, then the charges his office brought against Russian companies and citizens earlier this year are the only evidence that he’s actually been doing his job.
Oh yes, he’s got a doozy of a case against Paul Manafort (for crimes that have nothing to do with the election). And yes, he seems to have wrung a guilty plea out of Michael Flynn (for lying to the FBI, even though the FBI “did not detect deception” when interviewing him). And he was apparently involved in some way in the Michael Cohen fiasco, which appears to have less to do with Russia and more to do with a porn star.
But as far as the actual SUBJECT OF HIS INVESTIGATION? Yeah, this was all he had.
And now, because his team is so determined to keep the nature of their investigation a secret, he could lose even that.
According to Politico, attorneys Eric Dubelier and Kate Seikaly, representing one of the Russian firms named in the indictment, have asked the court to provide “nonpublic details about the case and the investigation.” This would be a little thing called discovery, which the defense is entitled to. Politico phrased it as such: “The move appeared to be a bid to force Mueller’s team to turn over relevant evidence to the Russian firm and perhaps even bait prosecutors into an embarrassing dismissal in order to avoid disclosing sensitive information.”
Well, you could just…you know…hand over the evidence, like any other prosecutor would.
But Mueller doesn’t want to do that because Mueller doesn’t give a damn about Manafort, Flynn, or these Russian charges. He has one big fish in mind and it’s the President of the United States.
Now he’s on the verge of having his highest-profile indictments dismissed because he thinks the office of the Special Counsel is above the law.
Things are not looking good for Mr. Mueller right now. This news comes hot on the heels of some damning comments from the judge in the Manafort case, who accused the special counsel’s team of being well astray from their Justice Department mandate by trying to tie decade-old crimes to the scope of their investigation. The judge in that case correctly surmised that the prosecutor was merely trying to get Manafort to flip on Trump and demanded that they provide evidence that Manafort’s crimes were within their jurisdiction. The special counsel is reluctant to provide that evidence. Either it doesn’t exist, or Mueller is again damning himself with his own secrecy.
As Andrew McCarthy noted in National Review this week, prosecutions rely on secrecy to some extent for success. But, as he said, there are things more important than secrecy, and the public’s faith in the President of the United States would be one of those things. It’s well past time for Mueller to lay his cards on the table: Is Donald Trump a criminal suspect or not?
And if so, what is the crime?