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NYT says Rosenstein secretly limited Mueller probe

This article contains news and commentary

Rod Rosenstein publicly ordered Robert Mueller to investigate “any links and/or coordination” between Russia’s government and the 2016 Trump campaign, but “privately told” him to “conduct only a criminal investigation,” the New York Times reported on Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020. Read story here.

Doing so not only limited the scope of Mueller’s inquiry, but it was further constrained by a current DOJ policy (not a law) that a sitting president cannot be indicted. Nonetheless, Mueller’s report refused to exonerate Trump, implying he was guilty, and Mueller’s prosecutions sent several of Trump’s campaign aides and associates to prison.

The Watergate investigation that termed President Nixon an “unindicted co-conspirator” operated under different guidelines, and resulted in Nixon’s resignation when he was told senators of his own party would vote him out. It’s doubtful anything Trump does would prompt today’s GOP senators to boot him from office. They’ve traded constitutional principle for short-term partisan advantage, and voters will have to decide in a few weeks what their tolerance is for a rogue president more dishonest and less restrained than Nixon.

This new revelation is significant because it’s likely “to fuel new scrutiny from Democrats” who’ve argued Trump’s ties to Russia haven’t been adequately explored. It’s already well known that Trump tried to obstruct Mueller’s investigation and was prevented from firing him by aides who’ve since left the administration.
About a week ago, the Senate Intelligence Committee issued a more comprehensive report than Mueller’s that confirmed Russia meddled in the 2016 election and Trump’s campaign welcomed their help, and disclosed previously unknown details of contacts between Trump associates and Russian officials during and after the campaign.

Moudakis Cartoon

So what’s going on? Trump can’t borrow from American banks. All indications are his business ventures lose money, and always have. I think those ventures launder money for Russian mobsters with Putin ties, they’re his bankers, that’s how he makes his money, and sucking up to Putin is part of the deal.

Think my imagination is running wild? Doesn’t it seem obvious? And why are so many satirists and cartoonists thinking along the same lines? Because where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

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  1. Mark Adams #
    1

    It is entirely possible that Nixon knew he was too ill to fight the impeachment. After returning to California he became gravely ill. Perhaps it was alcoholism, maybe other factors. There was no political reason for Nixon to step down when he did. A Senate trial was some weeks away, and in every impeachment thus far with one exception the Senators in the Presidents party have voted not guilty. Only in the Johnson impeachment did this not matter as the Republicans had a super majority in the Senate and Johnson was actually a Democrat after coming into the White House on a coalition ticket.

  2. Roger Rabbit #
    2

    Nixon resigned the day after a GOP delegation led by Goldwater told him he would be impeached and removed if he didn’t. He couldn’t govern and a humiliating removal wouldn’t have taken weeks.

  3. Mark Adams #
    3

    Odd according to Goldwater resignation never came up in the discussion. They told him that Congressional support had gone away, but not how they would vote. Senator Rhodes impression was that Nixon had already decided to resign prior to the meeting. Democrats held 56 seats and then 60 following the election. Of course this is in a time when most sitting Senators were in the middle and there was bi partisan ship.
    Impeachment was going to happen, and it did not look good, but it looked worse for Johnson in 1865. The Republicans needed no help from any Democrat to remove Johnson, to remove Nixon the Democrats needed Republicans and not to lose any Democrats.
    Was there some unspoken promise of a pardon? A wink and a nod that the VP would give Nixon cover. That Nixon would get some funds to move, and post Presidency…not exactly a golden parachute, but enough to entice might have played a part in all this. He certainly was not told he would get nothing as that may give ant rogue backbone, and Nixon actually had a back bone. I think Nixon knew he was ill and alcohol played a part.

  4. Roger Rabbit #
    4

    I didn’t say they discussed resigning. They didn’t, and didn’t have to. They told him he would lose the House and Senate votes. Goldwater wrote in his autobiography, “None of us doubted the outcome. He would resign.”



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