Tuesday, January 29, 2019

What if Mueller doesn't give Democrats what they want?

At what point does this assault by DEMs become outright sedition and treason?  We already know that the whole collusion scheme itself was treason.  The Mueller investigation was initiated through treason.

I do suspect that what Trump is doing is allowing all parties to fully expose themselves while building cases for their prosecution.  That is at least a reason for allowing it all to drag on without blow back.

In that case, at some point the roof will cave in.

Recall that Trump's position is far stronger than imagined and getting stronger.  He does not have to rush anything.

What if Mueller doesn't give Democrats what they want?

by Byron York

| January 22, 2019 09:46 PM

The position of most Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill is that lawmakers are waiting until Trump-Russia special counsel Robert Mueller delivers his report before considering whether to impeach President Trump. But what if Mueller does not accuse the president of wrongdoing, or at least impeachable wrongdoing? Would Democrats say, 'Never mind,' put away thoughts of impeachment, and move on to the next item on their agenda?

That seems unlikely. Many Democrats are deeply, emotionally committed to resisting Trump. Sixty-six House Democrats voted to allow impeachment articles to move forward a year ago. Now, with the House in Democratic hands, and after another year of media-hyped Trump-Russia allegations, there's no reason to believe Democrats would abandon the Russia issue regardless of what Mueller does.

In addition, some Democrats are warning that the public might not see all of Mueller's report. Justice Department rules don't require it, and attorney general nominee William Barr, in recent confirmation hearings, did not promise to release the whole thing.

So now there is talk about starting a new House Trump-Russia investigation that would essentially replicate what Mueller is doing now, but with the assurance that the proper (anti-Trump) result would be reached and that it could be used for impeachment purposes.

When Mueller poured water on the BuzzFeed report claiming that Trump directed fixer Michael Cohen to lie to Congress, Rep. Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, pledged to take up where BuzzFeed left off, no matter what Mueller said.

"Are you still going to investigate the claims?" Schiff was asked on CBS's "Face the Nation."

"Absolutely, absolutely," Schiff said.

Later on the program, Schiff said that whatever Mueller does, Congress needs to do for itself. "We need to do our own investigations," he said, "because at the end of the day, if the Justice Department tries to stonewall the release of that report for whatever reason, the American people are going to need to know what happened, and we're going to have to press forth."

But it's not just a powerful House committee chairman talking about a parallel investigation. A few days ago, former CIA chief Michael Hayden and former solicitor general Neal Katyal took to the Washington Post to call for a new "investigation into whether impeachment is appropriate."

Hayden and Katyal suggested that Mueller might not be able to satisfactorily investigate the subject covered by the BuzzFeed report, that is, whether Trump directed Cohen to lie:

The recent statement by the special counsel's office disputing the BuzzFeed article itself highlights the need for a congressional investigation. The BuzzFeed article alleges that Trump ordered Cohen to lie to Congress. Congress of course is the entity with the most at stake when it comes to such a crime. No entity is better poised to find the truth and reveal the facts to the American people.

The president and his advisers have tried already to block the government from investigating these questions. They have criticized special counsel Robert S. Mueller III as engaged in a "witch hunt" and attacked Cohen as a "rat" and a liar. Trump's lawyers have threatened to assert executive privilege to block answers to Mueller's questions and threatened to block release of Mueller's report. A senator has indicated he won't pursue the interpreter's notes due to executive privilege. All of this points to a severe danger that, absent an investigation into impeachment, there will be no process to ferret out the truth and report it to the American people.

It is hard to understand what evidence Congress, which does not have law enforcement powers, could find that Mueller's office, which does have those powers, could not. Instead, it appears that the utility of a new congressional investigation would be that it would keep a Mueller-like probe going even if Mueller falls short.

Of course, House Democrats are already starting, or promising to start, all sorts of investigations into the president and his affairs. What seems different about the recent talk is that it envisions an investigation specifically designed to lead to impeachment — something Democrats thought Mueller was doing for them.

It is important in any discussion of the Trump-Russia matter to say that we do not know what Mueller will do. For all we know, he might be planning dramatic action in the next 24 hours, or he might be putting the finishing touches on an "anti-climactic" report.

The second possibility could leave Democrats in a very difficult position. Party leaders have invested a lot in their across-the-board opposition to the president. If Mueller does not come up with something that supports what Democratic lawmakers want to do, they will have to do it themselves.

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