Yesterday, Palmer Report laid out how Special Counsel Robert Mueller is using the blown Paul Manafort plea deal as an end-around for bypassing Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, and getting evidence of Manafort’s lies and crimes (and by extension Trump’s lies and crimes) into the public purview. Now the Manafort judge appears to be fast tracking this process.
The premise is that, because Robert Mueller is accusing Paul Manafort of having lied to him in a way that violates their cooperation deal, Mueller now has to provide the judge with proof of what Manafort was lying about. Mueller gives the evidence to the judge, who makes a ruling about whether to scuttle the deal, and then includes the evidence in her public filing. Just like that, unless Mueller asks for her ruling to remain sealed, the public gains knowledge of the specific things Trump and Manafort have been plotting to keep secret.
Judge Amy Berman Jackson has now set a “scheduling conference” for this Friday morning. This does not appear to be the proceeding in which Robert Mueller tells the judge about Paul Manafort’s lies. Rather, this is the proceeding in which that proceeding is scheduled.
But it’s now clear that this is moving quickly, and if we had to make an educated guess, we wouldn’t be surprised if the judge sets things so that Robert Mueller turns over the evidence against Manafort as soon as next week. It would then be a matter of how quickly the judge processes it all and issues her ruling on the fate of the Manafort deal. That’s when Mueller’s evidence would presumably become public.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report