Fox News judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano says a new New York Times story alleging that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigative team is now interviewing members of the White House as part of its obstruction investigation spells big trouble for President Trump.
“It’s very ominous,” Napolitano said on Fox Business’ “Varney & Co.” Monday morning. “It basically means that Reince Priebus, the president’s former chief of staff, has already been subpoenaed.”
He added, “Before they subpoena you, they interview you. So FBI agents have interviewed him, gone back to Bob Mueller and said, ‘Here’s what he’s told us.’ Mueller has decided the grand jury has to hear that. So now he gets a subpoena to testify before the grand jury.”
Judge Nap elaborated on the legal jeopardy Priebus is in by appearing before a grand jury.
“There’s no judge there, he doesn’t have a lawyer there, there’s no defense counsel there … it’s just a prosecutor interrogating him, an FBI agent making notes, and the 23 members of the grand jury,” he explained, noting that the same thing will happen to staff of the West Wing.
Napolitano said that Mueller’s team of 16 Democrats is looking to find out if there are people in the West Wing who can corroborate James Comey’s version of events regarding Trump’s suggestion that the FBI “lay off” Michael Flynn.
The judge laid out the questions that would be put before the grand jury: “Was that an obstruction? Was it a suggestion? Was it the president acting as the chief law enforcement officer of the land or was it corrupt? Was the president asking the FBI to lay off of Mike Flynn because he was worried that Mike Flynn might say something about the president?”
Napolitano said that the latest developments show that “Mueller and company” are taking Comey’s obstruction allegations seriously.
“Ultimately we’re going to decide on the tone and the interpretation of a few words as to whether or not the president stays in office,” host Stuart Varney noted.
“Yes,” agreed Judge Nap, adding that the FBI’s pre-dawn raid on Paul Manafort’s home was an “extreme tool” that is only used “when no other less offensive means can be used for gathering evidence.”