President Donald Trump said Saturday that it was only through former FBI Director James Comey’s illegal leak of classified information that Robert Mueller was appointed as the special counsel for the Russia investigation. As such, he implied, Mueller’s entire scope of inquiry was null and void. Whether this is a line of argument being pursued by the president’s lawyers or just something Trump is spitballing on social media, it is a powerful cause-and-effect statement that could have wide-ranging implications for the Mueller team.
“James Comey’s Memos are Classified, I did not Declassify them,” Trump tweeted. “They belong to our Government! Therefore, he broke the law! Additionally, he totally made up many of the things he said I said, and he is already a proven liar and leaker. Where are Memos on Clinton, Lynch & others?”
Trump then wrote: “James Comey illegally leaked classified documents to the press in order to generate a Special Council? Therefore, the Special Council was established based on an illegal act? Really, does everybody know what that means?”
Why, yes! It means that Mueller was appointed on an illegitimate basis and should therefore have his mandate rescinded until such time that his appointment becomes necessary through an alternative route. Which, judging by what Mueller has come up with thus far, is exceedingly unlikely. This was supposed to be an investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election and how the Trump campaign aided and abetted that meddling. So far, Mueller has come up with some charges to throw against a handful of Russians and some unrelated charges to throw at Paul Manafort, and…that’s about it. Both Mueller and Rod Rosenstein have confirmed that Trump himself is not under investigation.
In other words, this whole thing is going nowhere fast.
But it’s actually worse than that, because by expanding the scope of his investigation on a daily basis, Mueller is sweeping up Trump associates for crimes and infractions that have nothing to do with anything. That’s why the president has repeatedly referred to it as a witch hunt. Mueller isn’t in search of criminals; he’s in search of crimes. That’s not the way the justice system in America is supposed to work. We’re watching our civil rights be trampled while the left cheers.