A very strange and disturbing story came out this week. The FBI reportedly conducted a predawn raid on the home of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort on July 26, less than 24 hours after Manafort spoke to members of the House Intelligence Committee. Manafort, who has been by all accounts cooperating fully with investigations in Congress and in the FBI, was apparently woken up at 3:00 in the morning by agents knocking at his bedroom door. Which brings to mind the question: Why would Robert Mueller’s agents treat a cooperating witness in this fashion?
This week, in an email to the Wall Street Journal, a lawyer for President Trump, John Dowd, said the raid was evidence of a “gross abuse of the judicial process” on Mueller’s part. He also went on to suggest that the raid was “employed for its shock value to try to intimidate Mr. Manafort.”
“These methods are normally found and employed in Russia not America,” Dowd told the reporter.
The revelation of the no-knock raid has put a noticeable shift in the way Trump’s lawyers have been talking about the Mueller investigation. For a while, it seemed like the Trump people were doing everything possible to present a conciliatory attitude towards the special counsel – an attitude of complete faith and cooperation. Trump himself made comments to the press about his feelings towards Mueller, specifying that he never, at any time, considered firing him. And Trump’s attorneys even suggested that the president has shared a private message or two with Mueller, a bit of news that surprised some.
But with the news of the raid, things may have shifted. Dowd, after telling USA Today earlier in the week that he has shown “appreciation” for Mueller’s professionalism in investigating the Russian meddling allegations, now appears to regard the special counsel as a renegade actor, pursing the investigation with unnecessarily abusive tactics.
“These failures by Special Counsel to exhaust less intrusive methods is a fatal flaw in the warrant process and would call for a Motion to Suppress the fruits of the search,” Dowd said, according to a report from Fox News.
We don’t believe for a second that Mueller is interested – in the slightest – in conducting a fair, thorough investigation. The pressure of the entire Washington establishment is on his back, and he knows he needs to come up with something or risk being labeled a pariah for the rest of his professional career. So he’s going to dig and dig and dig – using any and all methods at his disposal – until he can charge SOMEBODY with SOMETHING, even if that something is entirely irrelevant to Russia. The Democrats are out for blood, and they aren’t going to be amused if their chosen hound comes back empty-handed.