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TheResistance Report @AntiTrumpReport
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🚩 NYT: Exclusive: Robert Mueller wants to ask President Trump dozens of questions to determine if he obstructed justice. The Times has the list.
Here are the questions Mueller wants to ask Trump:
"The open-ended queries appear to be an attempt to penetrate the president’s thinking, to get at the motivation behind some of his most combative Twitter posts and to examine his relationships with his family and his closest advisers."
"They deal chiefly with the president’s high-profile firings of the F.B.I. director and his first national security adviser, his treatment of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and a 2016 Trump Tower meeting between campaign officials and Russians offering dirt on Hillary Clinton."
They also ask about any convos with Michael Cohen about a Moscow real estate deal; whether he knew of any attempt by Jared Kushner, to set up a back channel to Russia during the transition; any contacts he had with Roger Stone., and what happened during his 2013 trip to Moscow.
The questions provide the most detailed look yet inside Mr. Mueller’s investigation. The majority relate to possible obstruction of justice, demonstrating how an investigation into Russia’s election meddling grew to include an examination of Trump's conduct in office.
Among them are queries on any discussions Mr. Trump had about his attempts to fire Mr. Mueller himself and what the president knew about possible pardon offers to Mr. Flynn.
“What efforts were made to reach out to Flynn about seeking immunity or possible pardon?” Mueller planned to ask, according to questions read by the special counsel investigators to the Trump’s lawyers, who compiled them into a list.
A few questions reveal that Mueller is still investigating possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. In one of the more tantalizing inquiries, Mueller asks what Trump knew about campaign aides, including Paul Manafort, seeking assistance from Moscow
“What knowledge did you have of any outreach by your campaign, including by Paul Manafort, to Russia about potential assistance to the campaign?” No such outreach has been revealed publicly.
Mueller wanted to inquire about public threats trump made, conflicting statements from Trump and WH aides, the president’s private admissions to Russian officials, a secret meetings at an island resort, WikiLeaks, salacious accusations and dramatic congressional testimony.
Mueller also sought info from Trump about his relationship with Russia. Mueller would like to ask Trump whether he had any discussions during the campaign about any meetings with Putin and whether he spoke to others about either sanctions against Russia or meeting with Putin.
Through his questions, Mr. Mueller also tries to tease out Mr. Trump’s views on law enforcement officials and whether he sees them as independent investigators or people who should loyally protect him.
For example, when Comey, was fired, the WH said he broke with Justice Department policy and spoke publicly about the investigation into Clinton’s email server.
Mueller wants to ask why, time and again, Trump expressed no concerns with whether Comey had abided by policy. Rather, in statements in private and on national television, Trump suggested that Comey was fired because of the Russia investigation.
Many of the questions surround Mr. Trump’s relationship with Mr. Sessions, including the attorney general’s decision to recuse himself from the Russia investigation and whether Mr. Trump told Mr. Sessions he needed him in place for protection.
Mr. Mueller appears to be investigating how Mr. Trump took steps last year to fire Mr. Mueller himself. The president relented after the White House counsel, Donald F. McGahn II, threatened to resign, an episode that the special counsel wants to ask about
“What consideration and discussions did you have regarding terminating the special counsel in June of 2017?”... “What did you think and do in reaction to Jan. 25, 2018, story about the termination of the special counsel and Don McGahn backing you off the termination?”
Mueller has sought for months to question Trump, his lawyers have been negotiating terms of an interview out of concern that their client — whose exaggerations, half-truths and outright falsehoods are well documented — could provide false statements or easily become distracted.
The list of questions grew out of those negotiations.
Concerned about putting trump in legal jeopardy, his lead lawyer, John Dowd, was trying to convince Mr. Mueller he did not need to interview Mr. Trump, according to people briefed on the matter
Mr. Mueller was apparently unsatisfied. He told Mr. Dowd in early March that he needed to question the president directly to determine whether he had criminal intent when he fired Mr. Comey, the people said.
But Dowd held firm, and investigators for Mueller agreed days later to share during a meeting with Dowd the questions they wanted to ask Trump.

When Mueller’s team relayed the questions, their tone & detailed nature cemented Dowd’s view that Trump should not sit for an interview
Despite Dowd’s misgivings, Trump remained firm in his insistence that he meet with Mueller. About a week and a half after receiving the questions, Dowd resigned, concluding that his client was ignoring his advice.
Trump’s new lawyer in the investigation, Rudy Giuliani, met with Mueller last week and said he was trying to determine whether the special counsel and his staff were going to be “truly objective.”
Mueller’s endgame remains a mystery, even if he determines Trump broke the law. A longstanding DOJ legal finding says presidents cannot be charged with a crime while they are in office.
Mueller told Dowd in March that though Trump's conduct is under scrutiny, he is not a target of the investigation, meaning Mueller does not expect to charge him.
The prospect of pardons is also among Mr. Mueller’s inquiries, and whether Mr. Trump offered them to a pair of former top aides to influence their decisions about whether to cooperate with the special counsel investigation.
Dowd broached the idea with lawyers for both of the advisers, Flynn and Manafort, according to people with knowledge of the discussions.
“After General Flynn resigned, what calls or efforts were made by people associated with you to reach out to General Flynn or to discuss Flynn seeking immunity or possible pardon?” Mr. Mueller planned to ask.
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