Paul Manafort is already in jail. He’s just been convicted of eight felonies, which should be enough to keep him behind bars for the rest of his life. Special Counsel Robert Mueller has destroyed Manafort in no uncertain terms. But Manafort is still refusing to cooperate against Donald Trump, so now Mueller has revised his plans for the next phase of squeezing Manafort like a grape.
In three weeks Robert Mueller is set to put Paul Manafort on trial again. To be clear, this is not related to the ten deadlocked charges from the first trial, but is instead a different trial on entirely different charges. This time around the trial is focused on Manafort’s alleged money laundering, obstruction of justice, and failing to register as a foreign agent of the Kremlin. In other words this is much more about Trump-Russia than the first Manafort trial was. Now Mueller says this trial is going to go far more quickly than expected.
New court filings reveal that Mueller now thinks he’ll only need as little as ten days to make the case against Paul Manafort. Originally Mueller had predicted that he would need fifteen days. Why is a difference of five days important? It means five fewer days of testimony and evidence being presented. In other words, Mueller is putting on a more focused case. Perhaps he and his team learned what worked and what didn’t during the first Manafort trial, and narrowed their focus accordingly.
In any case, this puts us five days closer to Paul Manafort potentially being convicted on a whole bunch more felony charges. Robert Mueller hasn’t yet revealed whether he plans to retry Manafort for the ten deadlocked charges, which would result in Manafort being put through three trials. It looks like Mueller is just going to keep hacking away at what’s left of Manafort’s life, until he caves, or until there’s nothing left of him.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report