That same day, The Washington Post reported that Trump is under scrutiny by special counsel Robert Mueller, a former director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Mueller is reportedly investigating Trump for obstruction of justice as a result of Trump firing former FBI Director James Comey. On June 8, Comey had testified before the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee, stating that Trump demanded “loyalty,” specifically in the form of asking Comey to drop the investigation of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. Flynn had resigned his post on February 13, after it was disclosed that the latter misled Vice President Mike Pence about his communications with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
In the following days, Trump expressed vexation via Twitter about the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. National Election, denouncing the endeavor as a “witch hunt”:
You are witnessing the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American political history – led by some very bad and conflicted people! #MAGA
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 15, 2017
After 7 months of investigations & committee hearings about my "collusion with the Russians," nobody has been able to show any proof. Sad!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 16, 2017
Although Trump claims that Mueller’s investigation is a “witch hunt” and that there is no proof of his collusion with the Russians, during a press conference in Doral, Florida on July 27, 2016, Trump outright requested:
“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’ll be able to find the 30,000 emails [from Hillary Clinton’s computer] that are missing. I think you’ll probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
More recently, Zembla, a Dutch investigative documentary program, aired “The Dubious Friends of Donald Trump” in May 2017. The two-part documentary showed conclusive proof that not only is Trump connected to shady Russian oligarchs with ties to Putin but helped these same individuals launder money. The criminals linked to Trump include Felix Sater, who served as the managing director of Bayrock LLC, the real estate development and investment firm that co-financed the completion of the multimillion-dollar Trump SoHo hotel condominium in New York City, and Sater’s father Mikhail, a criminal with ties to Russian mobster Sergey Kislyak. According to the documentary, money laundering was the only way Trump could finance his building projects, as throughout the 1990s, six of his enterprises all filed for bankruptcy.
The following month, on June 5, 2017, TheIntercept.com received a highly classified intelligence report from the U.S. National Security Agency showing a conclusive and comprehensive account of Russian military intelligence cyberattacking elements of the U.S. election and voting infrastructure. Shortly afterward, Reality Leigh Winner, a former federal contractor from Augusta, Georgia, was accused of leaking the top-secret document and arrested.
Meanwhile, On June 16, CNN reported that Special Counsel Mueller has expanded his special counsel team, hiring 13 lawyers with plans to bring more on board as the dragnet expands. Though the account states that “Ultimately, it would be up to Mueller to decide whether there is enough evidence to recommend pursuing charges on any part of the investigation.” So much evidence of misconduct on the part of the Trump Administration has become public knowledge that anybody close enough to the mess who would recommend against pursuing charges could be viewed as complicit if not culpable.
Suffice it to say, it is very telling that Trump would denounce the investigation against him as a “witch hunt” as the evidence against him becomes more copious and airtight.
Featured image via Screenshot, “The Dubious Friends of Donald Trump“