Posted by Curt on 16 June, 2017 at 3:23 pm. 7 comments already!


Fred Barnes:

Is the deck being stacked against President Trump? It’s beginning to look that way since a special counsel was appointed a few weeks ago to investigate possible ties between Trump—or any breathing body in his campaign last year—and the Russians.

At the very least, the president will be on defense for months to come. He will be under scrutiny or attack by special counsel Robert Mueller, Senate and House committees, mobs of protesters, and the elite media. All the while the sword of impeachment will be hanging over him.

In theory, the appointment of Mueller as special counsel should be reassuring that the probe will be fair, objective, and nonpartisan. In his years as FBI director and as a Justice Department official, Mueller gained a reputation for honesty, integrity, and being a “straight-shooter.”

But already there are troubling signs. For openers, the history of such counsels—formerly known as special prosecutors—is not encouraging. Yet Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein reacted to the first bit of pressure—chiefly from Democrats—and appointed Mueller. And this without much evidence of a crime to justify it.

The problem is that special counsels tend to expand their investigations beyond any underlying crime (if there is one) and keep going until they find someone to indict. This is what Patrick Fitzgerald did during the second Bush administration, finally settling for a flimsy charge of perjury against Scooter Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff. Fitzgerald declined to prosecute anyone for the supposed crime he was investigating, the outing of a CIA agent.

Mueller has already broadened the scope of his investigation to include whether Trump attempted to obstruct justice in his dealings with then-FBI director James Comey, Trump’s leading antagonist. Possible financial crimes by Trump associates are also to be examined, according to leaks by “officials.”

Mueller’s sterling character has eased concerns about the fact that he and Comey are longtime friends. But some of the investigators and advisers he’s hired have had the opposite effect.

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