Evening Edition - July 23

5 minute read

July 23, 2019

With Robert Mueller’s testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees scheduled for Wednesday, I thought about bringing you another one of our “20 questions just for fun” commentaries, but so many friends in media have offered great questions (Gregg Jarrett says he’s got 37) that I thought we’d go another way. There are some new developments that Republicans need to bring up during the hearings. Perhaps they can word their questions so they somehow fall within the “four corners” of the report; perhaps not. Either way, the questions need to be on the record, whether Mueller answers them or not. Some of them involve the lead attorney on his special counsel team, Andrew Weissmann.

Mueller’s appointment of Andrew Weissmann as his right-hand man --- even tasking him with hiring the rest of the investigative team --- has always been suspect. Weissmann, we knew, was so “with her” that he even attended Hillary’s election night “victory” fiasco. The people he brought on board in 2017 to go after President Trump were Hillary supporters and donors as well.

One of them, Jeannie Rhee, was Ben Rhodes’ personal attorney and had also represented the Clinton Foundation and even Hillary herself –- in her email case! Really, how in anyone’s wildest imagination did a Hillary attorney end up on the special counsel team investigating Trump? If anything screamed “witch hunt,” it was this, but neither Mueller nor Weissmann cared about appearances. When you consider Mueller’s various conflicts of interest --- see yesterday’s commentary about Mueller and Comey --- and the people he hired, it’s beyond belief that this investigative team actually existed, yet it did, for almost two years, long after Mueller knew there was no evidence of “collusion.” We all got to see Lady Justice’s blindfold ripped from her eyes, and the people out to get Trump were actually happy about that.

It’s not just that Weissmann was pro-Hillary. He was what we all think of when we hear the term “sleazebag lawyer.” Whenever somebody tells you a lawyer joke, he’s the sort of lawyer you picture. His background, which we’ve examined in detail, was replete with atrocious tactics; he’s notorious for hiding exculpatory evidence. In her recent book LICENSED TO LIE, former DOJ official Sidney Powell, now representing Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, has written about Weissmann’s ruination of the accounting firm Arthur Andersen and its thousands of employees before the conviction was overturned 9-zip by the Supreme Court, which cited prosecutorial misconduct. Of course, by then the company had gone under.

In another case, thanks to Weissmann’s tactics, four former Merrill Lynch executives spent a year in prison until their convictions were overturned by the Fifth Circuit Court.

Sure enough, we’ve seen since then that the leopard doesn’t change his stripes, er, spots, as exculpatory evidence was hidden in the cases of Trump associates Carter Page (his FISA application), George Papadopoulos, Mike Flynn and even Paul Manafort. The FBI had already started down that path in its FISA applications, but it’s easy to imagine Andrew Weissmann taking it to the tenth power. It’s his specialty.

Well, that catches us up to today. On the eve of Mueller’s House testimony, investigative reporter John Solomon of THE HILL has uncovered something new about Mueller’s “pit bull” Weissmann. The story was confirmed to him by multiple sources with direct knowledge as well as contemporaneous defense memos that he personally read.

In early June of 2017, just two weeks into the special counsel probe –- while he presumably was still interviewing candidates for the team and moving boxes into his new office digs –- Weissmann quietly contacted a Ukrainian oligarch (translation: billionaire) named Dmitry Firtash, who had been criminally charged in the U.S. in 2014. He told Firtash that Mueller might make those charges go away if Firtash could give them “some dirt on Donald Trump in the Russia case.”

According to Solomon, Weissmann laid out for Firtash just what he was looking for, sharing with him a detailed theory about Trump’s so-called collusion (hint: he hypothesized that it involved Manafort) in hope that the oligarch would give him something that would support it. This isn’t something prosecutors would typically do, according to legal experts Solomon consulted, because it can lead to witnesses crafting their testimony.

Firtash was fighting extradition to the U.S. from Austria on charges, which he denies, that he engaged in bribery and corruption in India involving an American aerospace deal. Much as he surely would’ve liked to see those charges dropped, the oligarch didn’t take the deal, as he simply didn’t have any information about a Trump/Russia conspiracy. I guess he could have made something up to please Weissmann, but he apparently had more integrity than our own top intel people.

According to Solomon, this brash move on Weissmann’s part was driven by his knowledge that the Russia case was already unraveling, thanks to the Steele “dossier” turning out to be, as Solomon puts it, “an uncorroborated mess.” The case against Firtash was apparently falling apart as well.

For those not familiar with legal negotiations, such an aggressive push for a deal so early in the process would seem quite premature and even desperate. In fact, Firtash’s defense team thought the claim that the special counsel could have the charges dismissed was an exaggeration, as such a move would have had to be approved by the attorney general.

Interestingly, as Firtash’s case drags on and his fight against extradition continues, his legal team has brought the Weissmann deal to the attention of an Austrian court, “as potential defense evidence that the DOJ’s prosecution is flawed by bogus investigations and political motivations.” Wow, our Department of Justice is getting quite an international reputation for sleaziness. The Firtash case reads like such a mess that it looks as though he might not face trial in the U.S. after all.

Muelller surely knew about Weissmann’s outrageous overture to this Ukrainian oligarch in the beginning days of their investigation. This is the kind of thing they were doing early on to try to find something, anything on President Trump to tie him to Russia. We know Mueller won’t have anything to say about it during Wednesday’s hearing, but it sure would be fun to ask the questions, anyway. Hope somebody brings it up.

https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/454185-how-mueller-deputy-andrew-weissmanns-offer-to-an-oligarch-could-boomerang

 

 

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Comments 1-19 of 19

  • Gil Bellamy

    07/29/2019 03:56 PM

    There has been a problem with some degenerate men leaving cell phones on video in public portapottys and in female changing rooms to photograph women and girls using the facilities. That problem has now been solved by the liberal-progressives. Oregon has a new law that allows any person to use any restroom or locker room of their choice. No one is allowed to question that person's status as transgender. Problem solved -- Oh wait . . . .

  • Bernadette Dillon

    07/25/2019 10:33 AM

    Robert Mueller did not look or act like the pit bull I saw previously. It was very obvious how he answered the questions he supported the Democrats attacks on Trump. However he literally sucked the wind out of their sales when his mouth was open and his facial expression showed he was completely dumbfounded by the questions from Republicans when he was asked about the Steele dossier and the Fusion company that the Clinton foundation funded all of it. That told America everything they needed to know that this whole waste of taxpayers money was not done based on real information. Mueller never even investigated the Steele Dossier's or the Fusion organization because if he had this whole investigation would have ended years ago. Why because it would have resulted in the Clinton's being arrested for what they did prior to the election and would have really really hurt the Democratic party. Mueller would have told Pelosi don't pursue this or we the Democratic party will loose all faith with Americans. Yesterday his mouth open and his inability to answer any questions with regards to Fusion or Steele told America everything they needed to know.

  • William E. Lacure

    07/24/2019 11:30 AM

    I read this and others like it and wonder if the real truth will ever come out?? Then I wonder if anything will ever stick on Hillary or Slick Willy. just like every mention of Epstein is coupled to the video of him & Trump, but not a word about the many many trips Willy made with the sleeze to the Island of Petofiallia.

  • Paul Potter

    07/24/2019 10:32 AM

    I'm now 72 as a former employer anyone who was hired knew what he or she was expected to do at their job and when the failed to preform they were sat dow and talked to. If no improvement was noted they were written up and their personal file was noted,
    But further failure was not acceptable and they were let go. What's going on with this Congress? They have for the last 2+ years have ignored their jobs instead have instituted their own agenda. Then they have the gall to ask for a raise. They should be fired by now and some replacements installed who know what the job is and how to do it. The only one who seems to be working for us is President Trump...

  • Gail

    07/24/2019 07:49 AM

    When, when oh when will the American people ever see prosecution and conviction of these liberal deep state criminals!!!!!!!

  • Christine Hankins

    07/24/2019 12:56 AM

    Take racial/ethnicity questions off 2020census forms. Add citizenship question. No need to sort folks by race or family origin. Do need to count Americans!

  • Anne Turner

    07/24/2019 12:18 AM

    I doubt Mueller will answer any questions about his team. He will use the excuse that DOJ wants him to stick to the report. I expect to see a lot of winking, metaphorically speaking. I believe he will leave the impression that Trump tries to do something unsavory, just enough for the media to grab hold. The POTUS will probably shoot himself in the foot again with a tweet.

    Hear is what I think the president should say: we have gone round and round about these charges. I did nothing wrong. I am through talking about it. Congress, if you want to bring impeachment proceedings , go ahead. I have a lot of things to do as President and I am going to do them as long as I can. I truly want to look out for this country and it’s people of all colors and persuasions, whom I love. Nothing is going to change the negative tactics. You simply cannot get past your candidate losing. So continue to have at it, and But will be using MY energy to do my Presidential duties.

  • Henry Sherwood

    07/23/2019 10:58 PM

    As I was a career LEO:
    Sleezy is , Sleezy Does !!!
    I feel sorry for the career FBI and Justice Dept. employees that care about RIGHT and/or WRONG.

  • Carmine Fea

    07/23/2019 09:32 PM

    Why haven't Weissmann, Mueller, and Comey been held accountable for their illegal acts? We, the people, demand investigation and accountability. Their illegal acts and other wrongdoing are a disgrace, wrong for America, and degrade America around the world. They are part of the swamp we want drained to "keep America great".

  • Edna Berniece (Murphy) Evans

    07/23/2019 09:09 PM

    When we were first aware that Donald Trump was going to go for President. My husband's Aunt Pauline Kelley sent me a three page article written about Trump. It proved to me that this man
    was a wonderful leader of MANY, MANY MEN and could handle the work of President just fine.

    Berniece Evans
    Arkansas

  • Diane Rowlands

    07/23/2019 08:52 PM

    What a waste of the taxpayers money!

  • Mark Mittelstaedt

    07/23/2019 08:28 PM

    The deeper guys like Solomon dig, the worse this gets. People are gonna be really bummed out if there isn't jail time for some of the people like Comey, Brennan, Clapper, Hildebeest, etc.

  • Fiorella Weaver

    07/23/2019 08:16 PM

    I have a lot of "fun" questions I would like to ask.... I sure hope the Republicans don't cut and run!

  • Peggy S Nelson

    07/23/2019 07:30 PM

    As always a good read

  • Amelia Little

    07/23/2019 07:20 PM

    What does it take to get a lawyer disbarred? Seems like that should have happened to weismann (among others) long, long ago. It doesn't say much for our judicial system to allow such a person to continue on to ruin lives and companies--on garbage that gets rulings overturned. Too late for his victims, of course.

  • Emily Yeatts

    07/23/2019 07:15 PM

    Thanks but I have long given up hope of anything ever being done to mueller comey Brennan clapper or any sleaze Democrat I think in the end they will eventually win against the president because of pelosi Schumer nailer and schiff this should have never been started and yet struck and his girl are Scott free mueller and Weismann free I don’t know about Jeff sessions it’s sad our country is going to hell in a hand basket and no one cares

  • Allen Swatsworth

    07/23/2019 06:59 PM

    Governor Huckabee, Thanks for this new information. You are so right when you say “sleazebag lawyer” we all think of the face of this lawyer. John Solomon provides an great detail about how Weissmann is so unscrupulous and will go to any ends to get what he want, whether legally or shady. Why has he NOT been disbarred.

  • Todd Matosic

    07/23/2019 06:46 PM

    Can someone please do a welfare check on Justice Ginsburg...she hasn’t been seen in a very long time...

  • Stephen Russell

    07/23/2019 06:11 PM

    Questions to ask:
    Who ordered raids on Manafort & Stone?
    Did Comey or Wray order?
    Which judge OKd FISA.
    Who told FBI not to inspect Hillarys pvt server?
    Who blocked any probes into FBI abuses.
    Who rigged this Probe?
    How does rank & file FBI feel about Probe into Pres Trump?
    Or DOJ employees?
    Can we recoup costs for probe.