Robert Mueller, man of intrigue. Just one day after Mueller introduced an unknown Trump-Russia target identified only as Person A in court filings, Mueller is now at it again. He’s filed a new sealed Trump-Russia document in court today, and it’s sent pundits scrambling to try to figure out just what the document is, and which Trump-Russia player it’s aimed at. There are some rather strong clues here.
Several major news outlets have reported on the new sealed document today, which was filed by Mueller in relation to the criminal case against Rick Gates and Paul Manafort. The media has not been able to suss out what the document is about, of course, because of it’s sealed nature. But it obviously relates to the Gates-Manafort case. There are a few possibilities here, some of them more likely than others.
This document may simply be the Rick Gates guilty plea that we’ve been hearing about for the past three days. In fact this may be the most likely explanation. However, this does lead to the question of why the guilty plea would need to be sealed for now. It’s possible that Mueller is trying to cut a deal with yet another related person before making the details of Gates’ confession public.
It’s also very possible that this document represents new criminal charges against Paul Manafort that are based on the testimony Rick Gates just provided. Considering the timing, these are the two possibilities that make the most sense. There is also the theoretical possibility that this sealed document represents new charges against an additional person in the Gates-Manafort case. This of course takes us back to the question of who “Person A” is from Monday’s filing. There is also the longstanding question of who is named in the sealed “Indictment (A)” in the Gates-Manafort case. Mueller is keeping everyone in the dark, for now, for strategic reasons.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report