Report: Rod Rosenstein Crippled The Mueller Investigation
According to a recent New York Times report, former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was involved in limiting the scope of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation by secretly ending an FBI investigation into President Trump’s personal relationship with Russia.
- “The Justice Department secretly took steps in 2017 to narrow the investigation into Russian election interference and any links to the Trump campaign, according to former law enforcement officials,” The Times reported, which kept “investigators from completing an examination of President Trump’s decades-long personal and business ties to Russia.”
- The report noted that Mueller “secured three dozen indictments and convictions of some top Trump advisers, and he produced a report that outlined Russia’s wide-ranging operations to help get Mr. Trump elected and the president’s efforts to impede the inquiry.”
- However, “law enforcement officials never fully investigated Mr. Trump’s own relationship with Russia, even though some career F.B.I. counterintelligence investigators thought his ties posed such a national security threat that they took the extraordinary step of opening an inquiry into them.”
- Rosenstein reportedly curtailed the investigation within days, without notifying the FBI.
- Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe had given the greenlight for the investigation, but Rosenstein reportedly “concluded the F.B.I. lacked sufficient reason to conduct an investigation into the president’s links to a foreign adversary” and “suspected that the acting bureau director who approved the opening of the inquiry, Andrew G. McCabe, had conflicts of interest,” The Times reported.
- Because McCabe was not informed of the decision, the FBI was under the impression that Mueller would take over the investigation.
“We opened this case in May 2017 because we had information that indicated a national security threat might exist, specifically a counterintelligence threat involving the president and Russia,” Mr. McCabe said. “I expected that issue and issues related to it would be fully examined by the special counsel team. If a decision was made not to investigate those issues, I am surprised and disappointed. I was not aware of that.”
Rosenstein declined to comment on the matter, The Times reported.