When it comes to the obstruction of justice case that he’s been building against Donald Trump over the past several months, Special Counsel Robert Mueller is essentially at the finish line. We know this because he’s already requested an interview from Trump, which only ever happens at the very end of these kinds of investigations. Everyone caught up in the scandal, or at least everyone with a competent lawyer, knows that Mueller is at the finish line. It’s why we’re seeing the pileup we’re now seeing.
Rick Gates reluctantly cut a deal and sold out his longtime business partner Paul Manafort this week for a reason. He knew it was now or never. What’s remarkable here is that Gates and Manafort are primarily valuable to Mueller in the cases that he’s building against Trump for money laundering and conspiracy against the United States, not in the obstruction case.
Gates seemed to understand that once Mueller starts swinging directly at Trump for obstruction, there’s no telling what might happen. Don’t bet on this, but Trump is so erratic, he could just resign at that point, or run up and down the streets naked until he’s impeached. The point is that no one can afford to risk their life and freedom on the unknowns that might play out once Mueller officially targets Trump. There are signs that Gates may not be the only major player joining the pileup at the finish line.
The Trump-controlled House Intel Committee is suddenly hauling in Hope Hicks for questioning. This only seems to happen these days when Trump believes someone is about to flip on him, and Trump’s puppets on the committee want to find out what that person is going to tell Robert Mueller. So it sure sounds like Trump thinks Hicks is going to cut a plea deal against him on the obstruction charges she’s almost surely facing. Who else will join the pileup at Mueller’s finish line? It’s still only Monday.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report