President Donald Trump, in an interview with “Fox and Friends,” called the friendship between James Comey and Robert Mueller “very bothersome.”
That’s the understatement of the year.
The two don’t only share a warm relationship. They also share the common interest of investigating Trump and Trump-tied officials, supposedly in a non-biased, independent, above-the-political-fray type of way.
Comey, fired by Trump a few weeks back from his top FBI spot, just testified before the Senate that he was “concerned” over some of the president’s private statements — so much so that he felt the need to document the conversations in memos. Much has been made of these memos in the press — as if they’re proof positive that Trump was a liar and that, in turn, he must be lying about his interactions with Russians during the campaign season and that, in turn, he must have colluded with Russia to shake the election out of Hillary Clinton’s hands.
But the memos, of course, are simply Comey’s writings — and Comey, of course, was fired by Trump.
And on that Russia-Trump collusion thing? No proof — zilch, zero, nada, nothing.
So now here comes Robert Mueller, supposedly looking at Trump and Trump teammates for obstruction of justice — obstruction into the same Russia collusion investigation that’s gone nowhere — and lo and behold, this special counsel appointee is not only a former FBI director, same-same as Comey, but also a good friend of Comey’s. They worked together at the Justice Department years ago.
They go way back, as they say.
Asked by Fox whether this friendship raised a red flag, Trump said it was “very bothersome.”
Many are calling for Mueller to step down from his role. Not a bad idea. He does seem to be walking a line between perceived and real bias. One example? Mueller has tapped for his team several attorneys who’ve donated big bucks to the Democrats — to Clinton, John Kerry, Barack Obama and the like.
Could be no big deal.
Could be a very big deal.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich may indeed have nailed it, when he tweeted that Mueller is the tip “of the deep state spear aimed at destroying or at a minimum undermining and crippling the Trump presidency.”
That’s a dark scenario. But at the very least, even the most casual of political watchers, regardless of party affiliation, have to admit the Comey-Mueller friendship, along with all the other “bothersome” and concerning ties and affiliations and twists and turns in this Russian-Trump collusion-obstruction investigation, is an asterisk that can’t — and shouldn’t — be ignored.
First appeared at The Washington Times: