Special Counsel Robert Mueller didn’t indict, arrest, or cut a deal with anyone yesterday, or at least no such moves came out publicly. That was a rarity of late, considering that Mueller has been wheeling and dealing on Trump-Russia suspects seemingly every day for the past week and a half. But now he’s making up for it today, with a major new story that could only have strategically come from Mueller himself.
One of the keys to unraveling the entire Trump-Russia scandal is finding the existing money trail between Donald Trump and Russia that led to their joint foray into politics in the first place. Now CNN is reporting that Mueller has begun asking witnesses about the financial connections between Trump and Russia. Two things are crucial about this story. The first is that Mueller doesn’t ask questions like this unless he’s already found the evidence and pieced together the story. He uses these kinds of questions to see whether witnesses are going to tell him the truth or lie to him; lying about it is a federal crime.
The second crucial point here is that a story like this wouldn’t be out there today unless Mueller himself gave it to the media, which means he wants Trump to know he’s found the money trail. Mueller has strategically used this tactic before in order to send various Trump-Russia players scrambling. Now he’s using it directly against Trump. So why is Mueller trying to throw Trump off his game like this?
At this point it’s become obvious that Robert Mueller is so far ahead of the rest of us, it’s tricky to try to wrap ones head around his full gameplan. But considering that Donald Trump’s White House is in full disarray today, with everyone from Jared Kushner to Hope Hicks having imploded in controversy, it’s entirely possible that Mueller is simply trying to drive Trump over the edge as way of helping to finish him off.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report