News & Politics

Texas Republican Wants Mueller to Testify Publicly in Congressional Hearing

Special Counsel Robert Mueller (Rex Features via AP Images)

Texas Republican Rep. Brian Babin has been circulating a letter seeking support from fellow congressmen on his request that special counsel Robert Mueller appear publicly in a congressional hearing, The Daily Caller reported Friday.

Mueller’s investigation into Russian election meddling and possible collusion between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign has been blasted by Republican critics who believe the deck is being stacked against President Trump. Mueller has hired a team of Democrat attorneys to work on the case and has a close relationship with former FBI Director James Comey — a key witness. Additionally, Mueller’s choice of Washington, D.C. — which votes 93 percent Democratic — as the venue for a grand jury has critics crying foul.

Babin’s letter, which was obtained by TheDC, was sent out to congressmen Thursday and asks for members to cosign a letter he plans to send to House Judiciary chairman Bob Goodlatte and Senate Judiciary chairman Chuck Grassley.

“Every nominee for United States Attorney must be confirmed by the Senate, a process that brings to the forefront any concerns regarding the nominee’s ability to hold their position in a decent and impartial manner. However, as Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III and his team of lawyers investigate our very own president, we as a nation wait in the dark with very little information about those given this great authority,” Babin wrote in the letter.

He added that there are “serious concerns” about conflicts of interest regarding Democratic donors on Mueller’s team.

Those concerns are well-founded according to Joe Concha’s latest piece in The Hill which seems to corroborate the worst fears on the right that a deep state coup is taking place.

CNN counterterrorism analyst Phil Mudd warned that President Trump is agitating the government, saying during a Thursday afternoon interview with CNN anchor Jake Tapper that the U.S. government “is going to kill this guy.”

Mudd, who served as deputy director to former FBI Director Robert Mueller, said Trump’s defense of Russian President Vladimir Putin has compelled federal employees “at Langley, Foggy Bottom, CIA and State” to try to take Trump down.

“Let me give you one bottom line as a former government official. Government is going to kill this guy,” Mudd, a staunch critic of Trump, said on “The Lead.”

None other than Senator Chuck Schumer predicted this in January when he said intelligence officials “have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” after Trump had fired off some tweets critical of the intel community.

Mudd also broached Trump’s recent announcement of a ban on transgender soldiers in the military as another reason some in the government are turning on him.

“We saw the same thing in his transgender comments. What is the military saying to him on transgender? ‘Show us the policy.’ You know what that means inside government? ‘Ain’t going to happen,’ ” he said

Mudd pivoted to a newly revealed July FBI raid on the home of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort to emphasize his point about the mistrust between the intelligence community and the president.

“What did the Department of Justice say on Paul Manafort? ‘You can say what you want, a judge told us we had cause to search his home early in the morning because we don’t trust the guy who was your campaign manager.’ The government is going to kill this guy because he doesn’t support them,” he concluded.

Clearly, the “intel community” has way too much power, but so far the Trump administration has been unable to rein in these rogue spooks. And it’s a race against time because as former defense attorney and Fox News host Gregg Jarrett recently opined,  Mueller has been “shrewdly” stacking the deck against Trump “arranging the cards in a way that advantages yourself while ensuring your opponent loses.”

Jarrett says the grand jury card is a particularly dangerous one for Trump.

Over time, this Fifth Amendment principle has devolved into a one-sided farce, favoring only the prosecution. Defense attorneys are not allowed inside what has become a secret “star chamber,” permitting no adverse party to challenge the truth and credibility of witnesses through the test of cross-examination. It gets worse.

There are no enforceable rules of evidence during grand jury proceedings, which means that otherwise inadmissible hearsay or double-hearsay is perfectly acceptable. Unauthenticated documents are copacetic. Prosecutors are free to present only incriminating evidence, to the exclusion of exculpatory evidence.  All too often grand jurors simply rubber-stamp a prosecutor’s instructions. Thus, the old saying, “you can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich.”

With no meaningful limits on abusive tactics, the entire system is anathema to fairness.  A grand jury is to justice what military music is to music.  It bears no resemblance. My apologies to John Philip Sousa, but you get the point. This is precisely why grand juries, which were once in vogue everywhere, have now been banished in all nations except the United States and Liberia.

Mueller’s queen card is the Obama-appointed judge likely overseeing the D.C. grand jury. Under local court rules, Chief U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell is the one who presides over decisions on grand jury subpoenas, witness testimony, any executive privilege and possible Fifth Amendment assertions. In the past, she worked closely with former Attorney General Loretta Lynch and one of Mueller’s top staff lawyers, Andrew Weissman.

Indeed, Howell and Weissman co-authored a scholarly law article that explored obstruction of justice… which just happens to be part of what Mueller is reportedly investigating in the Russia-Trump case. Betsy Woodruff of the Daily Beast uncovered this nugget. A conflict of interest? Surely. But don’t expect a judicial recusal anytime soon, even though Judge Howell teaches ethics at American University’s law school.

“Congress has constitutional authority — legislative power over the purse,” Jarrett explained on Fox Business Friday. “Babin’s point is, if this is an incredibly biased witch hunt with lawyers that have been hired who are unfair inherently, Congress needs to know if their money is being squandered. It’s your money and my money — taxpayer money.”

Jarrett said Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had been “deceptive, disingenuous — if not dishonest” when he said that the investigation would be limited in scope.

“He denied it’s a fishing expedition,” said Jarrett. “Well here’s his order of authorization to Robert Mueller, the special counsel,” the Fox host said, holding up the document. “The first line’s fine, ‘Any links between the Russian government and the Trump campaign.’ But then, Rosenstein adds an additional line, ‘any other matters that may arise.’ That’s unlimited scope!” he exclaimed. “So when Rosenstein pretends it’s limited, that’s just not the truth!”

“The special counsel law says  it’s supposed to be a limited scope,” Jarret argued.