If Donald Trump was thinking about firing Jeff Sessions and replacing “Mr. Magoo” with someone who’s a little more gung-ho when it comes to obstructing justice by the pussy, now might be a good time to go ahead and speed the process up.
Because according to the New York Times, Mueller has subpoenaed the Trump Organization “to turn over documents, including some related to Russia,” marking what the Times notes is “the first known time that the special counsel demanded documents directly related to President Trump’s businesses.”
Obviously, that means Mueller is slowly tightening the proverbial noose around a President who is, by all accounts, growing increasingly frustrated with the scope and the persistence of the special counsel probe.
Earlier today, Politico reported that Trump’s legal team is drawing up plans for a possible interview between the President and Mueller. That story comes on the heels of reports out last week that the President’s attorneys are considering a gambit that involves effectively trading an interview with the President for the promise that the probe will be wound down expeditiously. I don’t think I need to tell you why that won’t work, but just in case you can read all about it here.
The Times goes on to note the following in the piece linked above:
The breadth of the subpoena was not clear, nor was it clear why Mr. Mueller issued it instead of simply asking for the documents from the company, an umbrella organization that oversees Mr. Trump’s business ventures. In the subpoena, delivered in recent weeks, Mr. Mueller ordered the Trump Organization to hand over all documents related to Russia and other topics he is investigating, the people said.
Mr. Mueller could run afoul of a line the president has warned him not to cross. Though it is not clear how much of the subpoena is related to Mr. Trump’s business beyond ties to Russia, Mr. Trump said in an interview with The New York Times in July that the special counsel would be crossing a “red line” if he looked into his family’s finances beyond any relationship with Russia. The president declined to say how he would respond if he concluded that the special counsel had crossed that line.
Spoiler alert: he’ll try to respond by firing Mueller or by otherwise crippling the probe, but it’s too late. Attempting to interfere with the special counsel investigation would have sparked a Constitutional crisis even before the world learned that Trump tried to fire Mueller last summer. Now that the President is known to have attempted to oust Mueller, any move against him will be even more controversial than it already would have been.
It’s starting to feel like Trump will need to do something sooner rather than later. You’ll recall that earlier this week, Bloomberg reported that Mueller may be slow playing Trump on the obstruction charge in an effort to ensure that he can continue to pursue other lines of inquiry including collusion and possible financial crimes.
Of course that presents Trump with a rather vexing quandary. If he tries to move on Mueller (“like a bitch“), he risks accelerating any obstruction case that, for all Trump knows, may already be a “dead to rights” situation. If, on the other hand, he waits, Mueller will continue to build other cases, potentially ensnaring still more people including Trump’s family.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: go down with this ship if you like but don’t delude yourself into thinking the ship isn’t sinking.