Giuliani demands Mueller suspend Russia probe

Rudy Giuliani, one of President Trump's lawyers in the Russia investigation, says that special counsel Robert Mueller should suspend his probe in the wake of a Justice Department inspector general report on the FBI's actions in the 2016 election.

Posted: Jun 15, 2018 4:51 PM
Updated: Jun 15, 2018 4:53 PM

President Donald Trump's attorneys, armed with the Department of Justice inspector general's report excoriating former FBI Director James Comey, now believe they can challenge any effort by the special counsel to pursue a subpoena seeking the President's testimony on obstruction of justice, according to sources familiar with their thinking.

Trump's attorneys huddled for several hours with the President Thursday to plan their next moves as they prepare to meet with special counsel Robert Mueller's team in the near future. It soon became clear that the report is now a central part of their strategy to fight the Russia probe and to prove there is no need for the President to testify.

The "insubordinate" Comey behavior, as it was described in the report, gives Trump's lawyers ammunition, according to sources, to argue that Trump had no improper motive in firing Comey -- which they claim had nothing to do with Russia.

In a tweet Friday morning, Trump called the report "a total disaster" for Comey.

Trump's lawyers will argue that the report's criticism of Comey makes it clear the President fired him for the right reasons -- and the decision was not part of an effort to obstruct justice. "Obstruction is dead. There was no obstruction," said one source close to Trump, adding that his team believes there is now no need to interview the President.

However, the President himself told NBC's Lester Holt last year that when he decided to fire Comey, "I said to myself, I said, 'You know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story.'"

Trump's lawyers now believe that since the IG report gave those at the FBI "the benefit of the doubt" about their behavior -- finding no conspiracy -- then the President should receive the same treatment. "Why doesn't that apply to the President as well?" one source said.

In addition, while the IG report found no evidence of political bias, the President's attorneys believe they can argue the entire investigation is tainted and corrupt, given the text from FBI Agent Peter Strzok that said about Trump's election, "We'll stop it."

Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani weighed in on Fox News on Friday, saying, "They (Mueller) should end it... The IG report basically tells you that both prongs of the Mueller investigation are either corrupt or answered."

The President echoed Giuliani on Friday morning saying, "What you'll really see is bias against me and against tens of millions of my followers. That is really a disgrace." Earlier, the President had responded to the news of the Strzok text by tweeting, "Doesn't get any lower than that."

One source added that Trump's attorneys believe that the texts sent by Strzok -- who was an initial member of the FBI's Russia team -- prove there was "direct, explicit and substantial" evidence that high-level people at the FBI who began the Russia investigation had a clear bias against the President.

The IG report did not address whether Strzok's political views affected the Russia investigation.

Giuliani on Fox News Friday morning went so far as to suggest that both Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein should say "enough is enough" and should "turn to investigate the corrupt investigators and clean up the FBI."

The President's lawyers believe they can put together what one source called a "compelling story" to effectively put the entire Justice Department on trial if Mueller's investigation continues.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

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Reported Deaths: 13764
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1031991782
Lake556411007
Allen41662691
St. Joseph36974564
Hamilton36561417
Elkhart29390459
Tippecanoe22886225
Vanderburgh22549400
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Warrick7856156
Floyd7781180
Grant7232179
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Boone6939103
Morgan6746141
Dubois6214118
Marshall6208116
Cass6000109
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Henry5895109
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Union72810
Ohio57811
Unassigned0420

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1108146

Reported Deaths: 20122
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1286421460
Cuyahoga1157382208
Hamilton813551248
Montgomery525311041
Summit48395999
Lucas43343818
Butler38951604
Stark33318929
Lorain25658504
Warren24580303
Mahoning22355603
Lake21166387
Clermont20111253
Delaware18841135
Licking16660222
Fairfield16570204
Trumbull16537482
Medina15603271
Greene15272247
Clark14233306
Wood13287198
Portage13242214
Allen11910239
Richland11601211
Miami10843224
Wayne9130222
Columbiana9029230
Muskingum8906135
Pickaway8658122
Tuscarawas8643248
Marion8641138
Erie8056164
Ashtabula7147179
Hancock6996132
Ross6943161
Geauga6834150
Scioto6534105
Belmont6155174
Union584549
Lawrence5726102
Jefferson5675158
Huron5544122
Sandusky5439125
Darke5415129
Seneca5347126
Washington5318109
Athens523660
Auglaize501887
Mercer487385
Shelby476595
Knox4570112
Madison444065
Ashland435597
Putnam4336103
Defiance432298
Fulton432072
Crawford4036110
Brown402461
Logan387577
Preble3848104
Clinton379166
Ottawa373581
Highland359665
Williams348078
Champaign344258
Guernsey324853
Jackson318154
Perry297350
Morrow291840
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Hardin274965
Henry273367
Holmes2699101
Coshocton268960
Van Wert247264
Adams243156
Pike242835
Gallia240750
Wyandot234556
Hocking220162
Carroll197148
Paulding176542
Meigs148240
Monroe136344
Noble136039
Harrison114138
Morgan109624
Vinton85517
Unassigned03
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