The Mueller probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election and associated crimes may have to “go dark” during the mid-term elections or risk being shut down entirely, the Wall Street Journal reports.
“Though Mr. Mueller doesn’t face any specific legal deadline, the fall midterms amount to a political one,” the paper reported, citing unnamed prosecutors and politicians. “He will reach a point this summer when Justice Department habits dictate he would have to go dark so he doesn’t appear to be trying to sway voters’ decisions, which would be at odds with Justice Department guidelines for prosecutors.”
The idea is that news bombshells or further indictments could be seen as interfering in the campaign—like former FBI director James Comey did in 2016 when he broke news about a laptop with some of Hillary Clinton’s deleted emails just 11 days before polls opened.
“Any action by Mr. Mueller that implicates or exonerates Mr. Trump or his associates in working with Russia or obstructing justice could go a long way to determining whether Democrats take control of one or both houses of Congress,” the report said.
Then again, these sources were citing “norms,” and if we’ve learned anything we’ve learned during this Trump era it may be that we’re “post-norm.”
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