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🔍 All things Mueller - What we know he has on Trump 'n Co

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#161

My brain hurt after reading this. Without being able to sort out all the implications, my main take away is that Mueller is assuredly hot on the trail of connections between Trumpworld and foreign entities that attacked our 2016 election. The company profiled here, Salix Services, is yet another pin in Mueller’s investigation board with strings of yarn connecting it to Psy Group (alleged to have interfered in our election) and Joel Zamel (the company’s supposed owner who has links to Israeli intelligence) and George Nader (an international influence-peddler representing Saudi Arabia and U.A.E., who, for some mysterious reason, paid Zamel $2 million after the election and is now a cooperating witness in the Mueller Probe). Phew!

Not mentioned in this article is Nader’s business partner, Eliott Broidy, a self-confessed financial criminal who was a fund raising vice-chair for Trump’s campaign, as well as a Republican National Committee deputy finance chairman, as well as vice-chair of Trump’s Inaugural Committee – and who was engaged in many other nefarious Trump-related activities. :moneybag:


#162

Good find and deciphering @Keaton_James …we’ve all been tasked to become spy masters in the game of who met with whom, why, and why so many weirdly configured connections.

Interesting wrinkle within that article…

Rule #1 in setting up OPS (read about from C Steele’s Dossier) is ALWAYS SET UP PLAUSABLE DENIABILITY.
By setting up how the company is layered into Trusts and just out of the way of too much financial scrutiny, the 'plausible deniability" is there.

Rule #2 (mine) - Does it pass the smell test???
NO, not at all.

… documents reviewed by The Daily Beast and interviews with individuals familiar with Psy Group’s financial structure lay bare a complex web of companies with connections to Zamel that point to Salix.

“It’s how Joel holds his shares,” one former Psy Group employee told The Daily Beast. “They set up trusts and provide nominee services to… shield beneficial owners from their holdings. It’s completely legal.

Psy Group, registered as Invop in Israel, has its ownership obscured by a series of offshore companies.


#163

Breaking today -

Washington Post reports today that there was a secret meeting in NYC, in early August 2016, a couple months before the election with Paul Manafort, Rick Gates and Kilimnik. The report says that this is where Polling Data was given to Kilimnik.
This could be the big bombshell that Burr is countering, which does smell like collusion or treason.

This could be a smoking gun or perhaps not.

The questions about it just keep cropping up though…Why would Russia need Polling data?

See Lawrence O’Donnell’s The Last Word, MSNBC to look for transcript on it…

The two Americans met with an overseas guest, a longtime employee of their international consulting business who had flown to the United States for the gathering: a Russian political operative named Konstantin Kilimnik.

The Aug. 2, 2016, encounter between the senior Trump campaign officials and Kilimnik, who prosecutors allege has ties to Russian intelligence, has emerged in recent days as a potential fulcrum in special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation.

It was at that meeting that prosecutors believe Manafort and Kilimnik may have exchanged key information relevant to Russia and Trump’s presidential bid. The encounter goes “very much to the heart of what the special counsel’s office is investigating,” prosecutor Andrew Weissmann told a federal judge in a sealed hearing last week.

During the hearing, the judge also appeared to allude to another possible interaction at the Havana Room gathering: a handoff by Manafort of internal polling data from Trump’s presidential campaign to his Russian associate.

Kilimnik, whom prosecutors have charged with working with Manafort to obstruct the investigation, did not respond to a request for comment.

In a 2017 statement to The Washington Post, he denied any connection to Russian intelligence. Kilimnik said the Grand Havana Room meeting had nothing to do with politics or the presidential campaign. Instead, he called the session a “private” visit, during which he and Manafort gossiped about “bills unpaid by our clients” and the political scene in Ukraine, where Manafort had worked as a political consultant for a decade before joining Trump’s campaign.


#164

:fire: :fire_engine:

Special counsel Robert Mueller said in a new court filing that search warrants have uncovered communications that connect longtime GOP operative Roger Stone to "Guccifer 2.0 and with Organization 1,” which is widely believed to be WikiLeaks.

Mueller made the disclosure in a filing Friday arguing that Stone’s case is related to the one involving Russian military hackers who are alleged to have breached the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and personal account of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.

The communications were uncovered in search warrants executed on accounts in the investigation into Russian hackers, Mueller said.

Stone’s attorneys have objected to his case being labeled as “related” to the Russian hacking case, arguing that it should be randomly assigned to a new judge. …

“Several of those search warrants were executed on accounts that contained Stone’s communications with Guccifer 2.0 and with Organization 1,” the filing states. …

Last July’s indictment against the Russian hackers cited communications between Guccifer 2.0, who is identified as a Russian GRU officer, and “a person who was in regular contact with senior members” of Trump’s campaign. Stone has acknowledged that he is likely the person referred to in the indictment.


#165

Great development…seeing that Stone is dancing around whether he did or did not have discussions with wikileaks is important.

Natasha Bertand of Atlanta wrote this :point_down: last year…Feb 2018 about the same thing…we knew he’s been communicating. But what was said is not known or was there more.

The correspondence raises questions about whether Stone—who served as Trump’s lobbyist in Washington in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and had been encouraging him to run for president for over a decade—has kept secret any interactions that may be of interest to congressional investigators examining Russia’s election interference.

Stone also exchanged private Twitter messages in August and September of 2016 with a user known as Guccifer 2.0. Guccifer claimed in a posting on their Wordpress site to have “penetrated Hillary Clinton’s and other Democrats’ mail servers,” but the self-described hacker was later characterized by U.S. officials as a front for Russian military intelligence. Stone only published that exchange after it was revealed by The Smoking Gun, a website that publishes mugshots and other public documents.

Here’s her response today as well…

Thanks for pointing this out @Keaton_James! I agree we should prepare for :fire: and as with all these disclosures, it seems to continue to emit smoke, which leads up to fire and alarm bells…see :fire_engine:

And Roger’s been gagged…so no commentary from his mouth to spin it. A bit of poetic justice I’d say! :statue_of_liberty:


#166

Investigation is looking at Brittany Kaiser, a director at Cambridge Analytica and Mueller subpoena’s her. I had not realized that Sam Patten worked for Cambridge Analytica as well, and he’s already been indicted (and subpoenaed) because he created a strawman set up to get an Oligarch into the Inauguration.

These breadcrumbs along the way that we’re getting now: polling data to Kliminik/Deripaska; confirmed Wikileaks communiques with Roger Stone; and checking into the backgrounds/actions of Cambridge Analytica sets up a conspiratorial/collusion-ary set of facts.

Wait, and “a new Netflix documentary, The Great Hack,” too - coming soon to Netflix, which unveiled this…

Waiting for shoes to drop, but the trail has never gone cold for Mueller methinks.

We are closer, ever closer. :mag:

A director of the controversial data company Cambridge Analytica, who appeared with Arron Banks at the launch of the Leave.EU campaign, has been subpoenaed by the US investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.

A spokesman for Brittany Kaiser, former business development director for Cambridge Analytica – which collapsed after the Observer revealed details of its misuse of Facebook data – confirmed that she had been subpoenaed by special counsel Robert Mueller, and was cooperating fully with his investigation.

He added that she was assisting other US congressional and legal investigations into the company’s activities and had voluntarily turned over documents and data.

Kaiser, who gave evidence to the UK parliament last April in which she claimed Cambridge Analytica had carried out in-depth work for Leave.EU, is the second individual connected to the firm subpoenaed by the special counsel.

In August, Sam Patten, a US political consultant who had worked for Cambridge Analytica on campaigns in the US and abroad, struck a plea deal with Mueller after admitting he had failed to register as a foreign agent for a Ukrainian oligarch.

He became a subject of the special counsel’s inquiry because of work done with Paul Manafort, Trump’s campaign manager, in Ukraine. He had also set up a business with Konstantin Kilimnik, a key figure who Mueller has alleged has ties to Russian intelligence and who is facing charges of obstruction of justice. In a 2017 statement to the Washington Post, Kilimnik denied any connection to intelligence services. Kaiser, however, is the first person connected directly to both the Brexit and Trump campaigns known to have been questioned by Mueller.

The news came to light in a new Netflix documentary, The Great Hack, which premiered at the Sundance film festival last month and is expected to be released later this spring. Film-makers followed Kaiser for months after she approached the Guardian, including moments after she received the subpoena. She claims the summons came after the Guardian revealed she had visited WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange while still a Cambridge Analytica employee in February 2017, three months after the US election.


#167

Bertrand: Shifting gears now to the special-counsel investigation, legal experts have often observed that Mueller seems to be investigating Trump and his campaign like he would a Mafia family. You spent a decade going after the Russian mob in New York. Do you think, given what we’ve seen from Mueller so far, that Trump is still a target?

McCabe: There are a lot of patterns in what Director Mueller is doing that are very familiar to me. Those patterns of targeting and investigating people who may have had more of a hands-on role, albeit at a lower level, and using those investigations to develop information and informants and cooperators—I mean, it is really the classic enterprise investigation that Director Mueller and his team have pursued. So do I think the case into Trump is open or closed? There’s absolutely no reason for me to believe that it’s closed. And you can certainly look at what Mueller’s done so far to say he is doing exactly what we would do with the investigation of a cartel or an organized-crime family.


#168

Big breaking news today…

A lot of focus over time of T’s need to get Sessions out, get others out…

and here’s an example to get a better lawyer presiding in SDNY for Cohen’s case.

Another attorney general takes office

As the prosecutors closed in, Mr. Trump felt a more urgent need to gain control of the investigation.

He made the call to Mr. Whitaker to see if he could put Mr. Berman in charge of the New York investigation. The inquiry is run by Robert Khuzami, a career prosecutor who took over after Mr. Berman, whom Mr. Trump appointed, recused himself because of a routine conflict of interest.

What exactly Mr. Whitaker did after the call is unclear, but there is no evidence that he took any direct steps to intervene in the Manhattan investigation. He did, however, tell some associates at the Justice Department that the prosecutors in New York required “adult supervision.”


#169

That’s Times story is a monster read! :clap:


#170

Adding more passages…which tell more of an UNBELIEVABLE story of T’s efforts to inpede the investigation…NY Times story Trump’s obstruction 2.19.19

WASHINGTON — As federal prosecutors in Manhattan gathered evidence late last year about President Trump’s role in silencing women with hush payments during the 2016 campaign, Mr. Trump called Matthew G. Whitaker, his newly installed attorney general, with a question. He asked whether Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York and a Trump ally, could be put in charge of the widening investigation, according to several American officials with direct knowledge of the call.

Mr. Whitaker, who had privately told associates that part of his role at the Justice Department was to “jump on a grenade” for the president, knew he could not put Mr. Berman in charge because Mr. Berman had already recused himself from the investigation. The president soon soured on Mr. Whitaker, as he often does with his aides, and complained about his inability to pull levers at the Justice Department that could make the president’s many legal problems go away.

Trying to install a perceived loyalist atop a widening inquiry is a familiar tactic for Mr. Trump, who has been struggling to beat back the investigations that have consumed his presidency. His efforts have exposed him to accusations of obstruction of justice as Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel, finishes his work investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Mr. Trump’s public war on the inquiry has gone on long enough that it is no longer shocking. Mr. Trump rages almost daily to his 58 million Twitter followers that Mr. Mueller is on a “witch hunt” and has adopted the language of Mafia bosses by calling those who cooperate with the special counsel “rats.” His lawyer talks openly about a strategy to smear and discredit the special counsel investigation. The president’s allies in Congress and the conservative news media warn of an insidious plot inside the Justice Department and the F.B.I. to subvert a democratically elected president.

The story of Mr. Trump’s attempts to defang the investigations has been voluminously covered in the news media, to such a degree that many Americans have lost track of how unusual his behavior is. But fusing the strands reveals an extraordinary story of a president who has attacked the law enforcement apparatus of his own government like no other president in history, and who has turned the effort into an obsession. Mr. Trump has done it with the same tactics he once used in his business empire: demanding fierce loyalty from employees, applying pressure tactics to keep people in line and protecting the brand — himself — at all costs.

It is a public relations strategy as much as a legal strategy — a campaign to create a narrative of a president hounded by his “deep state” foes. The new Democratic majority in the House, and the prospect of a wave of investigations on Capitol Hill this year, will test whether the strategy shores up Mr. Trump’s political support or puts his presidency in greater peril. The president has spent much of his time venting publicly about there being “no collusion” with Russia before the 2016 election, which has diverted attention from a growing body of evidence that he has tried to impede the various investigations.


#171

WTF WTF WTF
MUELLER’S REPORT…It is coming coon.

Or is this AG Bill Barr’s first move to get this whole Mueller “deal” done.

TBD…

Washington (CNN)Attorney General Bill Barr is preparing to announce as early as next week the completion of Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, with plans for Barr to submit to Congress soon after a summary of Mueller’s confidential report, according to people familiar with the plans.

The preparations are the clearest indication yet that Mueller is nearly done with his almost two-year investigation.

The precise timing of the announcement is subject to change.

The scope and contours of what Barr will send to Congress remain unclear. Also unclear is how long it will take Justice officials to prepare what will be submitted to lawmakers.


#172

Per: Mueller’s Report
as discussed by CNN and NBC.
I am checking all sorts of areas for verification, and what could it be, is Mueller really closing up shop, having passed along a LOT of his work to SDNY, etc.

Reports are that indeed of the 12 lawyers that are on Mueller’s remaining team, many are job shopping now. Some were seen moving big cartons of boxes (See Marcy Wheeler EmptyWheel What Q’s were having re: Mueller’s report

While I remain incredulous about the circumstances with which Mueller could have finished up his report, aka finalized the whole investigation, it could be true.
I am most interested in his recommendations as to who is still on the burner (so to speak) and may be indicted (so many, right? )- T immediate family - Junior, Kushner, and then the big kahuna T.

Would this be a time that Mueller needs to take a big break to consult with DOJ, and see what needed to be done should there be Treason involved? This would subject the country to a potentially huge destabilization. Maniac that T is, could this destabilize him…(further?)

Spitballing for sure…so I looked for the what if’s -

First, I checked twitter

These guys think that it could well be that Mueller is in essence wrapped up…and awaiting the next phase of it. Could that be handing over sealed indictments?

Then I checked Marcy Wheeler, Emptywheel.net

She has documented all of the cases that Mueller brought, who handled them, and what stage are they in…Very interesting read

https://docs.google.com/document/d/e/2PACX-1vQGXst08sN_GlwQ9n-c8drHrBGnDHXv18Rb7B8OcXfTyW3rnyZ5F9X_Ee4aOAAGNMDpwXQH_Mw5MSe5/pub

She believes that what Mueller is doing is giving a “partial report” now

Point 1

A report talking about “collusion” is coming this week

But maybe NBC’s sources are speaking metaphorically, and mean something else that isn’t the conclusory report but that will more closely resemble what everyone thinks of when they talk about The Report.

That’s likely to happen, but if it does, it’ll just be a partial report.

Point 2

Any overarching conspiracy indictment will not be coming this week

It’s possible Mueller is close to charging an overarching conspiracy indictment, laying out how Trump and his spawn entered into a quid quo pro with various representatives of the Russian government, getting dirt on Hillary and either a Trump Tower or maybe a bailout for the very same building in which Manafort met with Konstantin Kilimnik on August 2, 2016. In exchange for all that, Trump agreed to — and took steps to deliver on, with some success in the case of election plot participant Deripaska — reversing the sanctions that were such a headache to Russia’s oligarchs.

Point 3

Mueller could ensure a report gets delivered to Jerry Nadler next week … but that’s unlikely

There’s one other possibility that would make Williams’ prediction true: if Mueller deliberately triggered the one other way to deliver a report, by asking to take an action William Barr is unlikely to approve, and if Mueller was willing to close up shop as a result, then a report would go to Congress and — if Barr thought it in the public interest — to the public.

Point 4 (and hold on…perhaps indict the president)

The only thing that Mueller might try to do that Barr would not approve (though who knows? maybe what Mueller has is so egregious Barr will surprise us?) is to indict the President.

What are your thoughts?..it has been a monumental task to get where Mueller has brought us today. We’re at some pivotal point here, and the nation is looking for those long sought after answers. What did he know, and when did he know it?

:dove:


#173

I’m so glad you’ve been digging into this – you’ve made some excellent points and provided links to informative resources and analyses.

My questions and concerns are basically the same as yours. The thing that really gives me a knot in my stomach is that we haven’t seen some indictments of bigger fish (Trump Jr., Kushner, etc.), yet now we’re being told Mueller is wrapping up. As you point out, maybe those indictments do exist and are sealed, awaiting release on the heels of the report – or maybe we’ll wake up to another “Felony Friday” in the near future. Who knows?! The suspense is killing me. What a ride this has been since Nov. 8, 2016. :roller_coaster:


#174

YES to all that…yes, please.

Hard not to have major expectations to get these guys…and I want the ‘sheriff’ to round them up as well.

Mueller is by the book. He will have researched, flipped, collaborated with all Intel intercepts, and triple verified all the facts. But I do believe they (FBI and Mueller) knew going in that T was ‘dirty.’ They must have.

And from what we are learning more and more from McCabe’s reveals EVEN today on MSNBC show, particularly Nicolle Wallace’s interview. It was a blockbuster interview today.

Listen to the aftermath, of Frank Figliuzzi’s talk on how McCabe carefully attached T’s name to an ongoing FBI investigation…This means, according to Figliuzzi, who used to work in CounterIntelligence that McCabe had some serious goods on T.

One part of Nicolle’s interview…McCabe discussing a draft letter T wrote, which is incriminating. (starts off with T defiling McCabe’s character…natch)

And this is my own way of seeking comic relief in all this, bear with me. In the same way, during the OJ trial, experts would just say that OJ was guilty b/c of “Bruno Magli” shoes. (They left a certain imprint on the ground, and were incriminating evidence)

Is there one word or description of T that clearly shows he’s done wrong?

Over and over again, he lies.
Over and over again, he rids himself of his legal adversaries.
Over and over again, he has consciousness of guilt.

Maybe we’ll leave it as - judge a man’s character by the company he keeps.:unamused:

But even with all this knowledge, that T is in fact guilty, can there be a coming together of the best legal minds, and a congress who does believe in the rule of law, and the sanctity of the democratic institutions to get T out, even if it does not fit their ideology, purse strings? :moneybag::see_no_evil:

That will be the test. :sos:


#175

Yes! I was going to post that segment! Must watch!


#176

A new wrinkle…

Mueller has been acting as an investigator, not a prosecutor.…so therefore all the cases he’s been working on can be passed off to DC courts, SDNY. (Per the Mueller She Wrote podcast)

Mueller deputized all of his lawyers to be acting as District Attorney’s so the remaining ones can act and take their lawsuits to the various courts. (Mueller She Wrote podcast)

Does not matter what Barr says/does on this, when it is passed on.

There is buzz that SDNY is considering indicting T. (see Newsweek below)

Regardless of the outcome of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Donald Trump’s presidential campaign team’s alleged conspiring with Russia, the president may face even greater difficulties stemming from the the Southern District of New York’s separate inquiry.

The Department of Justice’s guidelines, which Mueller is subject to, does not permit the indictment of a sitting president. But some former prosecutors in the Watergate scandal, which led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon, believe the Southern District of New York, for which they also worked, isn’t subject to the precedent.

“I’m thoroughly convinced the SDNY will make its own evaluation. They will not say that’s a department policy,” Jon Sale, a former Watergate and Southern District prosecutor, who is close with former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani who is now Trump’s lawyer, told Politico in a story published Monday. “They’re obviously looking at the president, and I wouldn’t rule out that they could decide you can indict a sitting president,” he said.

Nick Akerman, who also worked on the Watergate prosecution team and was formerly a Southern District assistant attorney, characterized the investigation as very different from the one led by Mueller.

From this 1/18 article from Wired, some thoughts on how the Mueller team is organized.

There’s no reason to believe, in fact, that Mueller—who has surrounded himself with some of the most thoughtful minds of the Justice Department, including Michael Dreeban, arguably the country’s top appellate lawyer, whose career has focused on looking down the road at how cases might play out months or even years later—hasn’t been organizing his investigation since day one with the expectation that he’d someday be fired and worked to ensure that this, his final chapter in a lifetime of public service at the Justice Department, won’t be curtailed before it has gotten to what Mueller calls “ground truth.”

A criminal appellate prosecutor who was part of an ongoing subpoena fight related to the special counsel’s investigation into Russian election interference concluded his detail with the team in December, the special counsel’s office has announced.

The announced departure of Scott Meisler comes amid growing indications the special counsel is winding down the investigation.

Of the 17 prosecutors who joined Mueller’s team within the Justice Department since May 2017, Meisler is the fourth known to have to exited the office.


#177

It’s all one big counterintelligence investigation. The obstruction is collusion based on the evidence the FBI had before Trump fired Comey. All of this was handed to the Special Counsel to investigate. If they close the counterintelligence case — they close the case Into whether the President obstructed justice.

The Trump Tower meeting, all the Russian contacts by the campaign, all this from Papadopoulos on is tied to the moment Trump fired Comey. All of that is to assert what threat this poses to National Security and how to eliminate the threat. It’s up to the Justice Department to prosecute and congress to follow up on the public record.

Which leads us back to new AG Barr. Truth is no one knows how he will react to such a report. US politics is about to explode.


#178

Some of the ways to consider what Mueller’s wrapping up may mean. This goes to the question about what about all the loose ends (culled from article - Stone prosecution, mystery Company A, Andrew Miller’s testimony, Jerome Corsi, George Nader’s cooperation, mysterious Seychelles Mtg w/ Erik Prince AND obstruction of Justice)

In some ways, that report helps illustrate just what we might expect in the hours, days, weeks, or months ahead as Mueller “wraps up.” In broad strokes, there are seven scenarios that “Mueller wrapping up” could really mean:

1. Mueller sends the attorney general a simple “declination letter,” telling Bill Barr that he’s concluded his work as special counsel; that the related grand jury has charged all identified crimes worthy of prosecution; and that there are no further cases to come. In some ways, a letter this simple—which itself would represent a stunning anticlimax to the most politically charged investigation in modern American history—would be the most “Mueller-like,” an understated and quiet end to the probe by a man who has always preferred to let his work speak for itself. If Mueller stops here, with no further meaty comment or additional charges, his probe will still rank as one of the most significant and eye-opening counterintelligence probes in our history, even though it would have failed to identify any direct “collusion” between Trump and Russia.

2. Mueller compiles a detailed “road map,” providing Congress with an annotated bibliography or an index of sorts, outlining impeachment-worthy presidential “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Lawfare’s Benjamin Wittes and others [pried out](Lawfare recap of Watergate procedures) of the National Archives the analogous document that the Watergate special prosecutor created to help Congress charge President Nixon; it’s a detailed guide to evidence and grand jury testimony that could inform an impeachment trial. This might be the most compelling conclusion for Mueller if he’s abiding by the Justice Department’s policy that the sitting president can’t be indicted, but he has identified criminal behavior by the president himself. It may be similarly attractive if Mueller has found compromising actions by the president that fall short of a chargeable federal crime, but that nonetheless represent political behavior or collusion that a healthy democracy cannot abide in its leaders or candidates.

3. Mueller authors a detailed novelistic narrative, akin to what the 9/11 Commission [wrote](911 commission Report) or what Ken Starr [authored](Starr Report on Clinton) at the conclusion of his Whitewater hearing, a document that could stretch to hundreds of pages and provide in rich, narrative detail—with footnotes aplenty—the be-all and end-all story of the Russians’ impact on the 2016 election and the role that Trump associates may or may not have played in that. While this document is most similar to what many Americans have long believed the “Mueller report” would look like, in some ways this seems the least likely outcome simply because it’s the most sweeping, which would go against Mueller’s inherent instincts.

4. He offers both a final round of “his” indictments, as well as a detailed report like in 2 or 3 above. Mueller’s [existing court filings]Wapo What Mueller knows & Isn’t saying point to the idea that he’s considering or building toward a final overarching conspiracy indictment, one that connects Americans to the Russian attack on the election—either via WikiLeaks, Russian intelligence asset Konstantin Kilimnik, or other avenues. If this is the final outcome, it’s possible that Mueller already has told us precisely what he’s doing. After all, last summer’s GRU indictment began with the charge that “GRU officers … knowingly and intentionally conspired with each other, and with persons known and unknown to the Grand Jury (collectively the “Conspirators”), to gain unauthorized access (to “hack”) into the computers of US persons and entities involved in the 2016 US presidential election, steal documents from those computers, and stage releases of the stolen documents to interfere with the 2016 US presidential election.” That language could easily encompass Americans who participated, and since both the GRU indictment and the IRA indictment are “conspiracy” cases, Mueller could wrap up by simply filling in some more of those “persons known … to the Grand Jury,” e.g., Americans who participated in the plot.

5. He offers a report, but not the report, something more like a progress report rather than a single, definitive one. This scenario could also include multiple reports—concerning perhaps not just the Russian probe but broader investigations into foreign influence in Washington. The Daily Beast hinted in December that Mueller was preparing a special report on Middle Eastern influence in the 2016 election, which might or might not be separate from the question of Russian influence in the campaign. This progress report could also announce that’s he finished investigating the “Big Question” (the extent of Russia’s role in the 2016 election) but that he intends to continue sorting through ancillary matters—like, for instance, the Roger Stone case, the House witness transcripts, or the foreign mystery defendant—for perhaps months or even years.

6. He closes up shop but refers numerous active cases to other prosecutors —similarly ensuring that his probe lives on for years to come. Again, this could be because he feels like he’s answered his main charge—Russia—even though he’s uncovered much ancillary criminality. Schiff has begun [hinting](WaPo Entering New phase of Mueller’s investigation) in recent weeks that he feels Mueller has been too narrow in his investigation, and that he intends to dive deep into Trump World’s money laundering and [past business deals](New Yorker -Schiff’s plan to obliterate T’s red line.). The special counsel construct and mission was [never perfect](Atlantic - Special Prosecutor is not the answer/)—and Mueller, if the Ray Rice case is a guide, may indeed have interpreted his charge narrowly, leaving big and worthy questions to be examined by prosecutors in DC, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, and elsewhere. The US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and counterparts in DC and Virginia, already have picked up at least half a dozen ancillary cases among them.

7. Mueller unseals one or more long-standing sealed indictments. The media and bloggers have [regularly tracked](ABC News - Sealed indictments DC docket) the abnormally large number of sealed indictments filed over the last year in DC federal court, the jurisdiction where Mueller has been worked, including 14 added between August and November—a period where Mueller was theoretically “quiet” around the midterm election—and four recent sealed indictments that seemed to parallel the Stone indictment. Whether any relate to Mueller remains to be seen, but in some ways the idea of piling up sealed indictments would have been the smartest way for Mueller to ensure that if he was fired, his case lived on.

While the seven scenarios above capture the broad outlines of what the end of his probe might look like, the truth is that he could choose some of one and a bit of another, meaning that there are almost infinite variations of how the case could unfold from him in the days ahead.

It’s also worth noting that the Mueller probe—however it ends—represents a shrinking percentage of Trump’s potential legal troubles, as a total of at least 18 investigations surround Trump’s world, led by at least seven different prosecutors and investigators. (Since WIRED’s original tally of 17 distinct investigations in December, we’ve seen news of a state and federal probe looking at undocumented workers at Trump’s New Jersey golf club.) And all of that doesn’t count any of the work by the new Democratic-led House Intelligence Committee, the Senate Intelligence Committee’s ongoing work, nor any of the other probes led by other House committees. Even a complete and total exoneration by Mueller on the Russia question would represent only a tiny ray of legal sunshine for the president.

Nevertheless, there’s good reason to believe that Trump won’t get that total exoneration, as Mueller’s conspicuous silences in court filings on the collusion question seem to indicate he’s building toward something. Let’s remember that there have been two immutable truths thus far in the Mueller probe: First, every move has surprised us, both in timing and content; and second, every court filing has been more informed, detailed, and insightful than anyone imagined, and shown us that what we knew publicly was only the tip of the iceberg. There’s no reason to think that Mueller’s denouement will be anything different.


#179

I am understanding that while Mueller is leaving, the prosecutions and investigations still go on. Rod Rosenstein as has Mueller already passed along to the SDNY and DC courts various cases - Cohen, Manafort etc.

As for the clear as day obstruction question, here’s what I am thinking. Mueller, once completed will have summarized his next recommendations. Should certain people be indicted, ie - Junior, Jared, Miller etc? And what Mueller pronounces as clear evidence of wrongdoing that can not go unheeded.

Watching MSNBC’s Deadline WH today, with Nicolle Wallace and her legal minds Panel. Although A.B.Stoddard (Editor at Real Clear politics) suggests that what Neal Katyal says is correct. Neal wrote the regulations for what the Special Counsel should do.

Neal says that if there is known wrongdoing, President on down this needs to be remedied. If there is to be impeachment, which clearly the Obstruction info seems to fall under and a black-and-white and very easy to prove, then Congress needs to step in and start that.

If there is to be no impeachment, then there needs to be indictments. They all think Barr and Mueller will discuss the recommendations. What we as the public find out about the darker sides of this investigation is anyone’s guess.

Read Katyal’s review here of what to expect from Mueller’s report

Can not find today’s segment on MSNBC’s Deadline WH., but it should be a clip somewhere.

Also, note - I am a MSNBC watcher (and I will own my bias) BUT Rachel Maddow is doing a SPECIAL REPORT in the next day or two on what’s going on the the Mueller probe. Should be fascinating.


#180

As far as I can tell your assertions are correct.

In the McCabe book, he talks about how members of Congress were instructed to wait for Mueller’s investigation to be completed before calling the same witnesses because it was a counterintelligence investigation. Let me see if I can find the passage in the book, I was kinda was speed reading when I came across it.

I’ll update this post with the quote.

Page 225

The Senate committee investigators wanted to start interviewing people, including some of the witnesses in the Bureau’s cases. If the Senate investigators leaned too far forward and interviewed people under oath, those statements could create problems for the FBI investigation if we wanted to interview the same subjects. The Bureau needed to do some high-level deconfliction work, and we had not been getting much help in that regard from the Department of Justice.

And then on pages 233-4

I wanted to talk with him about the budding conflict between the FBI and the Senate Intelligence Committee over the Russia case. I was concerned that the committee’s requests to interview personnel and review materials were going to cause problems for our own investigation and future prospects for prosecution. I wanted to lay down some procedural ground rules. Among other things, I wanted the committee to agree that they wouldn’t talk to witnesses until after the FBI had interviewed them. I also wanted them to agree that they wouldn’t make recordings or recorded statements of witness testimony—too many people going over the same ground with witnesses can result in discrepancies and can often have the effect of muddying the facts rather than clarifying them. The FBI, the Justice Department, and congressional committees can work well together when the rules are understood and all parties act in good faith; the whole enterprise can fall apart in confusion if any element is out of whack. Because the terms I sought were prosecutorial equities, I felt the deputy should negotiate them on the Bureau’s behalf.

Immediately, Rod saw the need that I was pointing out, and he said, Yes, absolutely, you should refer all those questions to us. But I had come to this conversation wanting more than a specific answer to this one specific request. I wanted a broader affirmation that the Department of Justice would be more actively involved. My basic message was, I need you to protect the process here.

Page 236

I returned to see Rosenstein by myself. I thanked him for seeing me. I told him that the decision to designate a special counsel was entirely his, and I said I didn’t think I’d given him the benefit of my best thoughts on the issue, and I would like to do that now, for whatever it was worth. This is the gist of what I said to him: I feel strongly that the investigation would be best served by having a special counsel. I’ve been thinking about the Clinton email case and how we got twisted in knots over how to announce a result that did not include bringing charges against anyone. Because the same thing might happen with the Russia case, it raises the question of how the FBI could possibly announce such a result to a world that has become so intensely focused on the question of collusion. Had we appointed a special counsel in the Clinton case to begin with, we might not be in the present situation. Director Comey would not have had to make the decisions he felt he had to make, which ultimately—according to your memo, Rod—led to his termination. I see a high likelihood of history repeating itself as we move forward. Unless or until you make the decision to appoint a special counsel, the FBI will be subjected to withering criticism from the Hill. The mere act of enduring that criticism could destroy the credibility of both the Justice Department and the FBI.