Donald Trump has more to fear from a Southern District of New York investigation into himself, his family, and his associates than he does from the Mueller probe into possible Russian collusion, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie tells CNN.
For months, the conversation regarding Donald Trump and criminal investigations has almost exclusively focused on FBI special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing probe into possible criminal acts committed by Trump, his family, and/or his associates, with regard to suspected Russian influence in the 2016 election. Already the investigation has resulted in criminal indictments, and in some cases prison sentences, against Trump associates. Mueller is believed to be in the final stages of his investigation, and his final report is expected to be released to Congress and possibly to the media and the general public within weeks.
As of this writing, neither Donald Trump himself nor anyone in his immediate family has been named in the Russia investigation.
However, lost in the conversation has been another ongoing criminal investigation against Trump, his associates, and his family, and that investigation is being carried out by the Southern District of New York. And that investigation should be concerning to Trump, Christie told CNN reporter Chris Cuomo Thursday night.
“I always said that (special counsel) Bob Mueller is not what should concern the President or the White House. That’s the Southern District of New York.”
As Bloomberg reported in 2018, the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York has already secured a guilty plea against former Trump attorney and “fixer” Michael Cohen and had given an immunity deal to former Trump Organization executive Allen Weisselberg. And at the time, as Bloomberg described it, they were just getting started.
Just what, exactly, the district is investigating remains largely unknown. CNN posits that investigators are looking into whether any finance campaign laws were violated when Cohen arranged hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels and/or any other women, as well as looking into Trump’s inaugural committee for unspecified wrongdoing.
However, Bloomberg notes that, unlike the Mueller probe, which is limited in scope, the Southern District of New York can investigate Trump and his family and associates for any activities at any time, anywhere in the country. And forget about the statute of limitations, says Christie.
“Statute of limitations on most of this stuff, my guess is, would not run.”
As of this writing, the court has not issued any criminal indictments against Trump or anyone in his family, and CNN writer Veronica Stracqualursi suggests that the court is waiting until Trump is out of office before it hands down any criminal indictments.