After a week in which he referred to the Russian investigation headed by special counsel Robert Mueller as “tainted,” “dirty,” “rotten,” “illegal,” “phony,” a “disgrace,” a “shakedown,” a “scam,” “a fixed hoax” and “the biggest political crime in American History,” according to a Washington Post report, Donald Trump now plans to erase Mueller’s findings from history, the report by Post White House Bureau Chief Philip Rucker says.
Mueller completed his investigation almost one full year ago, in March 2019. Though he found numerous contacts between the 2016 Trump presidential campaign and Russia, and that the campaign “welcomed” those contacts, Mueller did not recommend that Trump be indicted.
He also failed to indict Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., despite finding that the younger Trump solicited incriminating information on Democrat Hillary Clinton from Kremlin-connected Russians.
Mueller’s report of his findings may be read online, via The New York Times.
Even though Mueller did not indict Trump or specifically recommend his impeachment, Trump has continued to harbor deep resentment against the former special counsel, who previously had been the second-longest-tenured FBI director in history. In a tweet earlier this week, Trump claimed without citing any evidence that Mueller had lied in his testimony to Congress.
According to political commentator John Stoehr, Trump’s tweet may indicate that he plans to prosecute and even jail Mueller.
But though Mueller’s findings have been exhaustively documented not only in the special counsel’s report but also by law enforcement and intelligence agencies, Rucker wrote, Trump said last week that the entire investigation “probably should be expunged.”
Trump did not specify how Mueller’s findings would be “expunged.” But he may have been referring to the prosecutions of two of Trump’s closest political associates that stemmed from the Mueller probe.
Trump’s 2016 campaign manager, Paul Manafort, is currently serving a seven-year federal prison term on multiple convictions arising from Mueller’s findings. Also, Trump’s longtime friend and political mentor Roger Stone is now awaiting sentencing on convictions for lying to Congress and intimidating a witness, both charges that arose from Mueller’s investigation.
Trump has also said that “they should expunge” the findings of the House impeachment inquiry, which he also dismissed as “a hoax,” according to an NBC News report.
The inquiry found that Trump held back congressionally-approved military aid from Ukraine in order to force that country to carry out a politically motivated investigation of former United States Vice President Joe Biden — an investigation that would aid Trump in his 2020 reelection bid.
According to Rucker, however, Mueller’s Russia findings remain “foremost on Trump’s mind,” because they could “delegitimize his claim” to have won the 2016 election fairly.