Saturday, September 23, 2023

Mueller’s Fumbling House Testimony Undermines Case for Obstruction

‘There is no way Mueller ran this thing!’

(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) As expected, former special counsel Robert Mueller began his day of testimony before two House committees with a lot of responses that he “can’t get into that.”

But as he appeared to fumble his way through interrogation, some wondered if it was Mueller being overly cautious or whether he simply lacked the information needed to respond.

Mueller, famously laconic, is said to have once called his chief of staff and when asked what he needed, responded with “Nothing” only to say that he had checked in with him.

Amid concerns over the partisan operatives that the special counsel had assisting him in the nearly two-year investigation into Russian collusion, his ignorance on the crucial machinations of his staff would legitimately be cause for President Donald Trump and supporters to raise major red flags and question whether the investigation itself was compromised.

The Gateway Pundit reacted to Mueller’s stuttering and fumbling during his morning testimony by concluding, “There is no way Mueller ran this thing!”

Fox News pundits characterized it as a “frail” performance, according to Mediaite.

Meanwhile Grabien compiled a montage of some of the early lapses.

Mueller requested at the last minute that one of his subordinates, Aaron Zebley, be sworn in to help fill in the gaps.

Because the first three hours of Mueller’s testimony, before the House Judiciary Committee, related primarily to President Donald Trump’s alleged obstruction of justice, the special counsel’s own direct role is a significant point in the defense against those claims.

Just as Trump’s intent is crucial in light of the fact that there was no collusion with Russia, if there was a valid intent for the president to seek Mueller’s removal, that would undermine the claims of obstruction even further.

The obstruction claims largely centered around Trump’s efforts to have Mueller himself dismissed by White House counsel Don McGahn and others due to conflicts of interest.

This would not have ended the investigation, but simply have replaced him with a different—and presumably more partial—investigator.

Mueller, who served as FBI head under presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, was a close personal friend of his successor, James Comey, whose firing triggered the investigation.

Justice Deparment Let Mueller Be Special Counsel Despite 'Conflict of Interest'
Robert Mueller, James Comey and Barack Obama / IMAGE: The Obama White House via Youtube

Trump also claimed that Mueller sought the position himself shortly before Comey’s departure—although Mueller denied that the interview in question was for the FBI job.

Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., submitted a December 2017 opinion piece to Fox News that outlined many of the conflicts of interest among Mueller’s hand-appointed staff.

Among them were the roles of disgraced FBI agent Peter Strzok and counsel Lisa Page, whose texts to each other revealed substantial anti-Trump bias.

Both were instrumental in the FBI’s investigation of the discredited Steele Dossier prior to joining Mueller’s staff.

Both ultimately were dismissed from Mueller’s staff and also dismissed by the FBI for their ethical lapses.

Biggs also noted that Zebley had worked for Hillary Clinton, and one of the lead prosecutors, Andrew Weissmann maintained close ties with Democratic figures including Clinton.

It was revealed in June that Weissmann had accepted a book deal to detail his work for the special counsel investigation.

“This was a Andrew Weissmann witch hunt blessed by Rod Rosenstein and the corrupt Department of Justice,” said the Gateway Pundit. “This was a criminal attempt to remove a sitting president from office.”

Mueller reiterated in his opening statements his earlier claims that Congress should continue to investigate and potentially impeach Trump on the obstruction claims.

However, if Democrats were relying on the strength of his testimony to reinforce their partisan effort and make the case before the American people, it seemed highly unlikely that it would move the dial any.

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