Biblical and Constitutional Politics
The Mueller Hearings About the Not-Mueller Investigation and the Not-Mueller Report
By Gary F. Zeolla
Before starting this article, I need to issue a correction. Every time I mention the “Mueller Investigation” or the “Mueller Report” on this website or in my book Tearing the USA Apart, that should now read the “Not-Mueller Investigation” and the “Not- Mueller Report.”
The reason for this correction is simple—having watched every minute of the testimony of Special Counsel (SC) Robert Muller before the US House Judiciary Committee (HJC) and the US House Intelligence Committee (HIC) on July 24, 2019, it is clear Muller was not in charge of the investigation, nor did he substantially contribute to it. It is also clear he did not write the Mueller report. He probably didn’t even read it. He also probably did not write the letter to US Attorney General William Barr of March 27th, 2019.
As Rush Limbaugh stated the day before the hearings, Robert Mueller was a “figure head.” His name was attached to the investigation and he signed off on to the report, but that was it. He was not actually involved in either. His previously stellar reputation was used to give credence to an otherwise partisan and judicially unsound report. In this article, I will detail the reasons for all of these claims.
But note, I have already written much about this whole witch hunt, and I will not repeat what I have written before, except for on one vital point. For my previous comments, see especially my articles I Told You It Was a Hoax and The Witch Hunt is Over.
The hearing with the SJC occurred in the morning, starting about 8:30 am and ending just after noon. Then after about a 45-minute break, the hearing before the HIC started a bit before 1:00 am and ended before 4:00 pm. It was shorter, as near the end, some Republicans ceded their time, the possible reasons for which I will discuss later.
The format was the same as for the Kavanaugh hearings that I detail in my Tearing Apart book. You had opening statements by the Majority (Democratic) ranking member (Jerry Nadler then Adam Schiff), then by the Minority (Republican) ranking member (Doug Collins then Devin Nunes), then by the witness, in this case, that being Mueller. Then you had alternating five-minute periods of questions of Mueller by members of each party. However, “questions” is often a misnomer, as much of that five minutes is often used by the member to pontificate, not giving the witness much of a chance to respond. It is also a frustrating format, as a member will just get going on a line of questioning, then have to stop, as I discuss in my book.
A better format would be to have each party select one representative to question the witness. Have the rep for one party do the questioning for an hour, then the other to do so for an hour, then maybe time for rebuttals on each side. But neither side would go for that, as it would mean not everyone on the committee would get his or her time before the cameras. And that is what this facade is all about, camera time for the committee members, not getting to the truth. If it was the latter, then the hearing would not be televised.
The order of the hearings was also backward. The HJC mainly focused on the claim of obstruction of justice by the President, while the HIC mainly focused on the claim of Russian interference in the 2016 election and the claims of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. That is backward. In any crime drama, the alleged crime is detailed first, then the investigation into that crime. If there is no underlying crime, then the investigation is meaningless.
The HIC established that there while there was “sweeping and systematic” Russian interference in the election, there was no “collision” or better “conspiracy” of the Trump campaign with Russia in that interference. Since there was no underlying crime, that makes establishing obstruction much more difficult.
Many were stunned by Mueller’s performance. He appeared confused, stuttered, said “a, a, a, a,” or “I, I, I, I” over and over again. He had to ask a member to repeat his or her question on many occasions. He had to be asked to speak into the microphone several times.
Personally, it was difficult to watch. My maternal grandpa died of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) and my mom with dementia. Mueller’s stammering reminded me of them when they were in the early stages of their respective diseases, especially my grandpa.
Now, I am not saying Mueller is in the early stages of AD or dementia, as I am not qualified to make such a diagnosis, and even if I were, I could not do so by watching someone on TV. But that was my impression. It also tells us why AG William Barr told Mueller in the letter of directives he sent to him prior to his testimony as requested by Mueller that he should stay within the four corners of his report and that he did not have to do this. Rather than Barr trying to protect the President, as the Dems and the mainstream media (MSM) claimed, this was Barr trying to protect Mueller.
This is another reason the hearings were backwards. Mueller’s performance in the afternoon was much better than in the morning. That could have been because he functions better latter in the day than in the morning. That is often the case for those with AD or dementia, as I witnessed in my family members. And if that was the case here, then the order would not have mattered.
However, the order would have mattered if the reason for his change in performance was because he was more comfortable talking about Russian interference and Trump/ Russian conspiracy, which he could confidently assert there was the first but not the second, than about obstruction, which the report did not make a decision about, which was ridiculous, and he probably knew that and could not defend it, as will be discussed later. As it was, people already noticed his difficulties and formed an opinion on his mental functioning in the morning before seeing his better performance in the afternoon.
It must be asked, how long have people known Mueller is losing his faculties? If it has been a while, then why was he appointed to be SC? And why did this not come out before?
That it has been a while could be indicated by him not being aware of the contents of the report that bears his name. As a writer myself, let me say, it was clear he did not write the report. I say that, as if you ask me about one of my books, I will know what is in it. Now, if it is a book I wrote a while ago, I might need to refresh myself on some of the contents, but a quick refresher is all it would take, which I would do beforehand if I knew I was going to be questioned about it.
In this case, the Not-Mueller Report was issued back in March, just four months ago, and Mueller knew for at least a couple of weeks he was going to appear before Congress. As such, it was inexcusable for him to not be well-versed in the report that bears his name. But those questioning him seemed to know more about what was in the Not-Mueller Report than he did.
The same goes for the Not-Mueller Investigation. Mueller seemed unaware of many aspects of it that members of the two committees were fully versed on. He didn’t even know the names of some people and entities that were mentioned in the report or that should have been part of the investigation.
Many in the media and on social media have been saying they felt sorry for Mueller, as he came across as a dithering old fool who was apparently suffering from some neurological disorder. I also felt sorry for him, for a few seconds. But then I remembered the many lives and reputations that have been ruined by what was supposed to be his investigation, as I detail elsewhere. Thus, if his reputation was ruined by his performance in this hearing, then so be it. It is a case of “you reap what you sow.”
If Mueller was not in charge of the Not-Mueller Investigation and did not write the Not-Mueller Report, then who did? The consensus among conservative commentators seem to be it was Andrew Weissmann. He was one of the first attorneys Mueller hired.
There is much controversy surrounding Weissmann. He has been accused of being corrupt and has had cases overturned by the Supreme Court. I will not speak to those points. But it is clear he is a Democratic supporter and was said to be a Hillary Clinton’s “victory party” on election night 2016, which of course turned into a wake.
It is also said that Mueller is the one who hired the rest of the staff for the Not-Mueller Investigation. That is why they were all Democrats, many of whom donated to Democratic candidates and who had known animosities for President Trump. That colors the whole investigation and report.
Now, Mueller said that in his hiring, he never asks an interviewee his or her political affiliation. Maybe he doesn’t, but Weismann clearly did. Otherwise, how do you explain how 19 Democrat lawyers were hired and no Republican? Was that just by chance? If you flipped a coin 19 times, and it came tails 19 times, you’d be a bit suspicious. And I am more than suspicious about how 19 Democrats and no Republicans conducted the Not-Mueller Investigation.
The Democratic Questioning
In the morning, the Democratic members of the HJC especially focused on the Trump Tower meeting. I discuss that event at length in my article Scrap of Evidence Causes Media Frenzy, so I will not address it here.
In the afternoon, the Democratic members of the HIC especially focused on the Trump Tower project in Moscow. I address that in my article While I Was Occupied: Part One. I only discuss it in brief there, but I say all I have to say on it. However, the Dems thought it was so important, they went on and on about it.
Otherwise, the Dems on the HJC dwelt on five of the eleven alleged instances of obstruction of justice in the Not-Mueller Report. I already gave my thoughts on these elsewhere, so I will not pursue them here.
The Republican Questioning
In the morning hearing, the Republican members mainly focused on the origins of the Not-Mueller Investigation. However, Mueller had said in his opening statement, he would not answer questions in that regard. He claimed the origins of the investigation were before he was appointed SC, so it was not within his purview.
However, one of the Republicans (I forget which one), pointed out that he indicted Paul Manafort on bank fraud charges that dated to a decade before he was appointed SC, so the timing of the origins of his investigation should not have mattered. But Mueller stanchly kept repeating, “that is outside of my purview” whenever he was asked questions in this regard. That is probably why some Republicans ceded their time at the end of the second hearing. It is also possible they did not want the bad optics of badgering a blithering old fool.
In any case, Jim Jordan did bring out an important point and person I had not heard of before. It would seem that Russian operative Joseph Mifsud was the origin of the whole Trump/ Russian collusion hoax. He initially fed details about this lie to newbie and low-ranking Trump-campaign aide George Papadopoulos on April 26, 2016. Then later, when Mifsud was interviewed by the FBI, he lied about his involvement and meeting with Papadopoulos.
However, Mifsud was not interview by the SC, while Papadopoulos was. Also, Mifsud was never charged with perjury, while Papadopoulos was. Jordan pointed out that this was the pattern of the Not-Muller Investigation—anyone associated with the Trump campaign was interviewed and charged, while anyone guilty of the exact same crimes but were not associated with Trump were not interviewed or charged.
In addition, the Republicans harped on the fact that there was Russian collusion by the Hillary campaign and the DNC (Democratic National Committee), but that was not part of the Not-Mueller Investigation and the Not-Mueller Report. Mueller could only reply that such was “outside of my purview.” But how could alleged Trump collusions be part of his “purview” while alleged Hillary collusion was not? It just made no sense. Fortunately, the OIG (Office of the Inspector General) is looking into this half of the investigation. Its report should be out later this summer.
Given the gang of Trump-hating, Hillary-supporting Democrats Weissmann hired, these patterns are not surprising, but they are very disturbing, and it clouds the entire Not-Mueller Investigation and Report. But as bad as that is, it is not the worst tarnish of this whole affair. That comes next.
The best lines of questioning were by Republican Reps John Ratcliff in the morning and Mike Turner in the afternoon. Both concerned the illogical, unconstitutional, and legally meaningless last line of the Not-Mueller report, “while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”
I have already spoken at length on the ridiculousness of the “not exonerated” idea, but it bears repeating, as it is so important. It cuts at the very heart of our entire judicial system and its basic premise of “innocent until proven guilty.” This premise came under attack during the Kavanaugh proceedings, as outlined in my Tearing Apart book, and once again by the Not-Mueller Report.
Ratcliff went on at length about how the idea of “exoneration” is not found and never has not been found anywhere in the American judicial system. A person is innocent until proven guilty, and that includes the President. Ratcliffe’s tirade was fun to watch, and I felt like cheering at the end of it. But sadly, he did not leave Mueller time to respond to it. I so wanted to hear how Mueller justified breaking centuries of American jurisprudence.
Then in the afternoon, Rep Turner used a great illustration to show the ridiculous of the idea of “exonerate” in the American judicial system. He asked Mueller who gave him the authority to “exonerate” someone. Mueller declined to comment, as he knew he could not, as no one gave him such authority, as no one has such authority to give it to him, as Turner demonstrated.
Turner pointed out that the SC got its authority from the DAG (Department of the Attorney General). He then piled up three very thick and large books containing the US law code that governs the DAG. On top of that, he put an annotated copy of the US Constitution (also a large and thick book).
Then very sarcastically, he said that maybe Mueller’s law school taught him something different from his law school, so he got the criminal law textbook from Mueller’s law school. He then stacked that book on top of the other four books. It also was a large thick book. You thus had five large thick law books stacked on top of each other on his desk. Turner then said he had these books scanned, and in none of them does the word “exonerate” occur. He then asked Mueller why then he used the standard of exonerate, when no such term exists anywhere in the American law code.
Mueller, finally getting a chance to answer this vital question, simply said, “This was a unique situation.” That was it. His whole defense for throwing out centuries of American jurisprudence and its standard of innocent until proven guilty. To that, Turner rightly responded, “Everyone has the presumption of innocence, including President.”
Do not miss what is happening here. If Mueller can get away with making up a brand-new rule of jurisprudence for the President, saying it is a unique situation, then another prosecutor can make up a new rule when you are on trial, saying the same thing. However, the same law must apply to all people, as both the Bible and US Constitution make clear. If not, then all fairness of justice is lost, and the blindfold is taken off of Lady Justice. But as it was, as Turner correctly pointed out, the use of that one word taints the entire report.
Turner then said the reason the Not-Mueller Report included that closing sentence was just to give the media a headline. And sure enough, he showed a copy of a newspaper with the headline, “Mueller: The President Not Exonerated.” He then said this same headline could be seen in newspapers across the country and on news websites. He then showed a screenshot of CNN which also had the same in its banner at the bottom of the screen. He then said to Mueller, “You no more have the authority to exonerate someone than you have the authority to turn someone into Anderson Cooper” (a CCN host, for those who don’t know).
The point of all of this is that sentence about “not exonerate” should never have been included in the Not-Mueller Report. It should have ended with, “this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime.” That should have been it. And since the SC did not think it could not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the President committed a crime, that should have been the end of this whole hoax. The case should have been sealed, nothing more said about it, and nothing released to the public
That is what always happens when a prosecutor’s office does not bring an indictment. It never “names and shame” a defendant it cannot indict. The case is over, as this one should now be. The reason for not naming and shaming someone who is not indicted is that the person making the allegations will never have to prove them in a court of law, and the allegations will never be subject to cross-examination by the accused. Consequently, the accused’s reputation will forever be marred by unproven allegations.
That is what has happened with President Trump. Dems and the MSM have continued to repeat the “not exonerated” line. Consequently, millions of Americans believe the President is guilty of various crimes, but such has never been proven, and the allegations would never hold up under cross-examination in a court of law.
The OLC Opinion
One last point is worth exploring, that of the reason the Not-Mueller Report did not reach a conclusion as to whether Trump obstructed justice. During his May 29th press conference, Mueller indicated that the reason his report did not reach a conclusion was due to the opinion of the OLC (Office of Legal Counsel) that a sitting President cannot be indicted. The reason for this opinion is that if a sitting President could be indicted, then any and every prosecutor in the country who did not like a President could charge him with a frivolous crime. The President would then spend his entire presidency in court fatiguing these frivolous charges.
That is why the Founders included the provision of impeachment in the Constitution. That is the remedy for a President who commits a crime. He must first be impeached by the House, then convicted by the Senate and thus removed from office. Then he can be indicted.
As it was, the MSM and Dems were gleeful after that press conference, for a few hours. But then Barr had to save Mueller’s butt by coming out with a joint statement by the SC and DAG that Mueller had misspoke. It declared the OLC opinion was not the reason the Not-Mueller Report did not reach a decision as to if the President obstructed justice or not. This clarification was important, as Mueller had said the latter on several occasions to Barr and others. But his press conference contradicted those statements. Thus, Mueller could be accused of lying, either to the American public in the press conference or to the AG and others.
With that background, Republican Rep Debby Lasko asked Mueller this question in the morning session, and he once again said it was only due to the OLC opinion that his office did not reach a conclusion on obstruction. Lasko was very confused and pointed out to him the joint statement, but Mueller held with his statement at that time. This exchange then led to Democratic members asking Mueller if the President could be indicted after he leaves office. Mueller said that he could. This then led to joyful reporting by the MSM that Trump could be indicted after he leaves office.
However, all of that glee was crushed when Mueller said in his opening statement in the afternoon hearing that he needed to clarify his earlier comment in this regard. He said, “We did not make a decision as to whether Trump committed a crime.” That eliminated the idea it was only because of the OLC opinion.
I have stated previously that the Not-Mueller Report not making a decision in this regard was a dereliction of duty, and Mueller should give back half of his pay by not doing so. But be that as it may, the point is, Mueller did not recommend indictment, as his office did not think it could prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Trump obstructed justice. As such, once again, that should be the end of that. Trump should not be impeached now, and he should not be indicted after he leaves office. However, the MSM continues to repeat Mueller’s morning statement, while ignoring his afternoon clarification.
On the question of if the President can be indicted after he leaves office, it must be noted that Mueller was asked if the President could be indicted after he leaves office. He was not asked if he should he be indicted. Those are two very different questions. The former is a matter of a principle of law. The latter is a determination on this specific case. However, the MSM and the Dems are continuing to talk as if the latter was asked and answered in the affirmative, which it was not.
The response of the MSM and Dems to the hearings is to continue to claim that Trump committed crimes and should be impeached. Every 2020 Democratic presidential candidate has come out and said something like, “President Trump did everything possible to obstruct justice.”
But I must ask, did “President Trump do everything possible to obstruct justice” when the White House released 1.4 million pages of documents to the SC? Did “President Trump do everything possible to obstruct justice” when he allowed forty members of the White House to be interviewed by the SC? Did “President Trump do everything possible to obstruct justice” when he allowed the White House Counsel, Don McGahn to testify for 30 hours to the SC? Did “President Trump do everything possible to obstruct justice” when he allowed the Not-Mueller Investigation to proceed to conclusion unhindered, as Mueller testified?
That said, Dems can continue to beat this drum if they like, but they do so at their own peril. The American public has had it with this whole witch hunt. It is time for Congress to get back to work on things that Americans actually care about, like illegal immigration and the crisis at the border. But if Dems continue to focus on investigating and impeaching the President, not only will Donald Trump be reelected, but Republicans will probably retake the House in 2020. That is why the President, Republicans, and conservative commentators are declaring the Mueller hearings to be a “disaster” for both Mueller and his reputation and for Democrats.
One last point is worth mentioning. Dems have been saying that the Not-Mueller Investigation “recovered” $42 million that went into the national treasury. That covered the cost of the investigation, so the investigation did not cost the government anything. However, that $42 million came by way of prosecuting Paul Manafort on bank fraud and tax evasion charges that stemmed from a decade ago. Those crimes could have easily been handled by the AG’s office, without the extra expense of a SC and without tearing the country apart.
The Budget Deal
While all of Washington and the MSM has been focused on the Mueller hearings, Congress quietly passed a disastrous two-year budget deal. It will increase spending by $320 Billion and add nearly $1 Trillion per year to the already bloated $22 Trillion national debt. But you probably heard little about this in the media.
But it must be noted, President Trump submitted a plan with $3 Trillion in budget cuts back in February, but it was dead on arrival in Congress, and the media vilified him for it, calling him “uncaring” for wanting to cut social programs. Then he gets vilified again if he doesn’t sign the bloated budgets Congress passes, as that would lead to a government shutdown, as happened earlier this year.
That has been the pattern ever since Trump took office. He submits a balanced budget plan, the MSM vilifies him for it, and Congress never even considers it. See the first section of the second part of an article I wrote back in 2017 titled, Eventful Three Weeks in Politics: Part Two for details in this regard.
In any case, we are now on the road to ever-increasing budget deficits and national debt. But hey, Mueller was testifying, so no one wanted to hear, write, or talk about a boring budget deal, even though it is something that will affect all of us and then our children and grandchildren, who will have to pay off the massive debt was are incurring.
I declared the Trump/ Russian collusion witch hunt over a while ago. But Dems and the MSM just could not let it go, and so we ended up with this farce of the Mueller hearings. And they still cannot let it go. They will keep investigating and talking about impeachment, until they get trounced in the 2020 election. Then maybe that will be the end of this whole hoax.
In the meantime, Congress is now on a six-week recess. It must be nice to be able to take such a long summer vacation that must of us could not afford to take. But in a way, maybe that is good, as Congress won’t be able to pass any more horrendous bills, like the budget deal. However, the crisis will continue at the border, but you probably won’t hear much about it until after Labor Day, as that would disrupt the vacations of all of those congressmen and women.
Standard References, plus:
American Thinker. Andrew Weissmann: Robert Mueller’s dirty cop.
CNN. Read: Letter from special counsel Robert Mueller to Attorney General William Barr.
Heavy. Andrew Weissmann: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know.
Hill, The. Trump releases 2019 budget with $3 trillion in cuts.
Lawfare. Alter the Committee Hearing Format for Mueller’s Testimony.
New York Times. Federal Budget Would Raise Spending by $320 Billion.
The Mueller Hearings About the Not-Mueller Investigation and the Not-Mueller Report. Copyright © 2019 by Gary F. Zeolla (www.Zeolla.org).
Tearing the USA Apart
From Kavanaugh, to Incivility, to Caravans, to Violence, to the 2018 Midterm Elections, and Beyond
The United States of American is being torn about by political differences more than any time since the 1960s and maybe since the Civil War of the 1860s. This division was amplified by political events in the summer to fall of 2018. This time period could prove to be seminal in the history of the United States. This tearing apart came to the forefront and was amplified during the confirmation proceedings for Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh. This book overviews the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation proceedings in detail. It then overviews these additional major events that occurred up to the end of November 2018.
The above page was posted on this website July 28, 2019.
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