Friend says Trump is considering 'terminating' Mueller

Report Donald Trump is considering just firing special counsel Robert Mueller

The sound of sharpening knives echoed everwhere Monday. Congressman Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House of Representatives, said he has "confidence" in Mueller.

Chris Ruddy, a Trump friend and the CEO of the conservative website Newsmax, raised the possibility of the president considering terminating Mueller, a potentially explosive option.

"I think that Mueller shouldn't have taken the position", Ruddy said, "if he was under consideration and had a private conversation with the president and was privy maybe to some of his thoughts about that investigation or other matters before the bureau".

No such allegations against Trump or anyone on his staff have been made, Ruddy said.

Spicer did not outright discount the notion of removing the special counsel, but he noted Ruddy was not a spokesman for Trump.

Three members of the legal team known to have been hired so far by Mueller have given political donations nearly exclusively to Democrats, according to a CNN analysis of Federal Election Commission records.

Trump has repeatedly denied colluding with Russian Federation during the presidential campaign, and Comey and others have testified that there is no evidence to the contrary.

But as the scandal continues to close in on Trump and the 2018 midterm elections approach, it's likely the number of Republicans defending Mueller and abandoning the president will only increase.

The effort to muddy the waters surrounding the investigation is coming amid growing White House concern that the probe could detract from the president's agenda for months or years to come. The Times reported Trump has been bothered by conservative news reports that Mueller was close to fired Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey. It put the question to five lawyers who shared their assessments, anonymously. Firing Mueller, however, would be an cataclysmic event that could change the political dynamics. "That was the beginning of the end of Mr. Nixon", said law Prof. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) pointed out on Twitter that, if Trump fired Mueller, Congress could get to choose the next special counsel - and it might end up being Mueller. Policy-makers created new limits on the investigator's power and placed it under the accountability of the government.

Under Justice Department rules, Trump would seemingly have to order Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein to rescind department regulations protecting a special counsel from being fired for no good reason, and then to fire Mueller. "While the president has every right to" fire Mr. Mueller, "he has no intention to do so", the White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters late Tuesday after a day of speculation over Mr. Mueller's fate.

"Either of those actions was unthinkable to us back in 1999 ..." That is why Gingrich claims Mueller is treating Trump unfairly, and how Trump may justify firing him.

Besides, he added, it should be Congress that carries out an investigation since it is given the role of oversight in the constitution. The Post said both men refused the President's request. In fact, Trump has already argued that all these controversies are hampering his ability to fix relations with Russian Federation.

On the other hand, 2017 is a different time from 1973.

Such an action, though, would be politically perilous. "The termination of Mueller would amount to an admission of guilt and obstruction of justice". Perhaps Trump could argue that Mueller's appointment was compromised because it was triggered by Comey's leak of one of his memos about Trump.

Such moments sometimes reflect the deep division among Trump's White House advisers about the best course for the president to take in the face of political or legal adversity. But is there such a thing as an "infinite dare"?



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