What comes next? That’s the big question after popular vote loser Donald Trump used the infamous Nunes Memo to publicly attack the FBI and try to discredit the Robert Mueller investigation into his “alleged” ties with Russia.
Trump is clearly acting like a man backed into a corner, aware that Mueller is closing in faster by the day. That’s the only explanation for his behavior. If he had nothing to hide, he’d allow the Justice Department and Special Counsel Robert Mueller to continue their work without constantly attacking and trying to undermine them.
So what’s next? Well, some people think that Mueller may already have something up his sleeve, in the form of a sealed indictment against Donald Trump.
A Politico report points out: Special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation has gathered enough steam that some lawyers representing key Donald Trump associates are considering the possibility of a historic first: an indictment against a sitting president.
While many legal experts contend that Mueller lacks the standing to bring criminal charges against Trump, at least two attorneys working with clients swept up in the Russia probe told POLITICO they consider it possible that Mueller could indict the president for obstruction of justice.
The attorneys say they do not have any specific knowledge of Mueller’s plans, but are basing their opinions on the law, with one of the attorneys citing his interactions with the special counsel’s team, whose interviews have recently examined whether Trump tried to derail the probe into his campaign’s Russia ties.
“If I were a betting man, I’d bet against the president,” one of the lawyers said.
One of the attorneys represents a Trump official and speculates that Robert Mueller could try to indict Trump even if he expects it to fail – if only to show the gravity of his findings.
“It’s entirely possible that Mueller may go that route on the theory that, as an open question, it should be for the courts to decide,” the attorney said. “Even if the indictment is dismissed, it puts maximum pressure on Congress to treat this with the independence and intellectual honesty that it will never, ever get.”
The only thing close we have to Trump’s Russia scandal in presidential history is Richard Nixon’s Watergate, but it’s still an apples-to-oranges comparison in many ways. Nevertheless, Nixon’s DOJ thought a sitting president shouldn’t be indicted, but it was only a theory. It was never actually tested.
Robert Mueller can in fact get a grand jury to indict Donald Trump, but the next step would be to get the court to rule that the indictment is valid.
There In fact there is strong circumstantial evidence that Mueller may already have a sealed indictment against Trump. Bill Palmer points out, that “back in November that when Mueller got a grand jury to indict Trump campaign advisers Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, they were listed as “Indictment (B)” in the official court paperwork (link). That means there’s an “Indictment (A)” in that same case, and it’s still under seal. By definition it would have to be against a bigger fish. But the big fish like Jared Kushner and Jeff Sessions weren’t connected to the financial crimes that Manafort and Gates were indicted on.”
Kierán Suckling from the Center for Biological Diversity pointed out was the first one to point this out weeks ago:
So, there is in fact another sealed indictment out there. We aren’t sure who it’s against, but the sealed Indictment (A) could very well be against Donald Trump. If so, Mueller can unseal it anytime.
The fact that Trump is attacking the FBI, trying to undermine and dismantle the bureau, don’t be surprised if Mueller unveils this sealed indictment in the coming days or weeks.