MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show on Tuesday read the tea leaves in the latest Robert Mueller court filings to conclude that if President Donald Trump fired the special counsel, it would not end the investigation.
"Recapping what we just learned from this breaking news story from The Washington Post, the president's lawyers have been informed by Robert Mueller the president is a subject of Mueller's investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 election," host Rachel Maddow reported. "That's important news that's just broken, the president is a subject of Mueller's investigation."
Maddow also identified another gem hidden deep in the filing.
"Here is the thing I want you to know, something else from this filing that looks to me like it's something really important, it's from deep in the filing, page 42," Maddow flagged. "They tell us that the charges brought against Paul Manafort weren't just brought by special counsel Robert Mueller's office alone, the charges against Manafort were signed off on by main justice. The National Security Division signed off on some of the charges and the Tax Division signed off on some charges."
"That's interesting," Maddow concluded. "Robert Mueller is not acting alone in bringing these charges in the Russia investigation, he's getting sign-off from two other divisions at the Justice Department for bringing these criminal charges."
"And then Mueller's team also basically makes the case that if -- somehow magically -- Robert Mueller was disappeared and the special counsel's office was no longer allowed to be involved in the investigations, nevertheless, these investigations would persist," she continued. "This seems very important to me."
"If that's true, what this means is that the special counsel's office is effectively asserting here, that if Robert Mueller goes away and gets raptured, and if the whole special counsel's office gets wrapped up and thrown away, these prosecutions will continue," Maddow concluded. "You make the special counsel's office go away, those senior prosecutors still have authority."
"You 'poof' Robert Mueller somehow, this investigation will continue," she added. "I don't know if that means they are expecting to be tested on this, or warning they shouldn't be, but there is a clear statement nobody can fire this investigation out of existence."