Special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE has presented President TrumpDonald John TrumpAccuser says Trump should be afraid of the truth Woman behind pro-Trump Facebook page denies being influenced by Russians Shulkin says he has White House approval to root out ‘subversion’ at VA MORE‘s legal team with a list of questions as investigators seek an interview with the president.
The New York Times reported Saturday that the questions were a sort of starting point for Mueller, whose team is working to negotiate an interview with Trump as part of the investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election.
It was after his legal team received the questions that Trump launched into a series of tweets, in which he denied that his campaign coordinated with Moscow during the 2016 election and lambasted Mueller’s investigation as unnecessary.
In one Saturday night tweet, Trump asserted that Mueller’s investigation should never have been opened in the first place, because there was “no collusion” and “no crime.”
That tweet came hours after John Dowd, one of the president’s lawyers, called on Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod Jay RosensteinOvernight Cybersecurity: Lawyer charged in Mueller probe pleads guilty to lying | Sessions launches cyber task force | White House tallies economic impact of cyber crime Sessions creates cyber task force to study election interference Dopey Russian ads didn’t swing voters — federal coverups did MORE, who oversees the Russia investigation, to shutter the probe.
The statement from Dowd was unusual for an attorney who has repeatedly insisted that Trump and the White House cooperate with Mueller’s investigation in hopes that it would come to a natural end.
But according to the Times, Trump’s lawyers appear increasingly on edge, especially after Trump met earlier this month with attorney Emmet Flood. He reportedly discussed bringing Flood on to handle his interactions with Mueller’s team. He also discussed Flood as a possible replacement for White House counsel Don McGahn, the Times reported.
Dowd and another one of Trump’s lawyers, Jay Sekulow, were not aware of the meeting with Flood, and reportedly became concerned upon learning about it that they could be pushed aside.
Trump’s tweets on Saturday also followed the abrupt firing of former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabeAndrew George McCabeDopey Russian ads didn’t swing voters — federal coverups did Federal abuses on Obama’s watch represent a growing blight on his legacy In the case of the FISA memos, transparency is national security MORE just two days before he was set to retire. The president praised McCabe’s ouster, tweeting that it was a “great day for Democracy.”