According to MSNBC host Rachel Maddow, just eight minutes after former special counsel Robert Mueller finished his testimony in the House Intelligence Committee, the president’s lawyers filed documents to block his taxes from being released in New York.
Maddow explained that among the things Mueller talked about, President Donald Trump being compromised by Russia was one major topic.
“Knowingly accepting foreign assistance in a presidential campaign is a crime according to special counsel Robert Mueller,” Maddow explained Wednesday. “It’s a crime in certain circumstances and unpatriotic and wrong and unethical. Coming from a person who said repeatedly he was blocked by policy from bringing an indictment even if he wanted to. Maybe that rings hollow for him to say. That might have been a crime. Maybe it’s just interesting. Just dismaying to hear the actions of the president described as unpatriotic and unethical and wrong. Maybe that’s just a bummer. Maybe that’s a terrible thing to hear about your country and its leader. Except, special counsel Mueller made clear today, under questioning, that there was more to it than that.”
She played a clip of House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) asking about countries having information about your lies and being able to blackmail you.
“If you behaved in an unethical, unpatriotic, wrong, potentially criminal manner when it comes to another country, that’s not just gross and not just a dismaying thing that somebody might say about you,” Maddow continued. “If you have done that, you are compromised by a foreign power. They can use what they know about you. They can expose your wrong-doing and extort you. You are compromised. If somebody associated with a presidential campaign is compromised, you are at risk. Even if it’s not the campaign. Especially if it is.”
She went on to cite every example Mueller gave about people in the Trump campaign and the Trump White House, including the president, who was ultimately found to be compromised by a foreign power.
But even with Maddow’s “studious refusal” to believe the best of possible outcomes for the hearing, “you still could have knocked me over with a feather as late as last night if you told me that today we would get from Robert Mueller over the course of these seven hours such a blunt accounting from him. A blunt unequivocal accounting of who in the president’s campaign was compromised by Russia and how, specifically how they were compromised by Russia, including the president.”
“I cannot speak to that,” Mueller said when asked about if he looked into whether the president was compromised.
“What we didn’t get from him today, that it now seems fairly imperative to chase down — given the unrelentingly dire descriptions he gave about the president’s conduct and the conduct of the president’s campaign and its ongoing implications for the country. It seems like they gave us two big directions that feel imperative to try to figure out next and the paths we next follow to try to get to the bottom of this still open scandal,” she continued.”
It’s for this reason that Maddow thinks the most important “next step” is to speak to the people on Mueller’s team who did the work. But that’s only if Congress wants more substantive and detailed information about what all was done.
That’s when Maddow revealed that just moments after Mueller finished, Trump’s lawyers were in court trying to protect Americans from seeing if he was financially compromised.
“I should tell you that literally eight minutes after the close of the Mueller hearings today, eight minutes after the second hearing, the president filed an emergency writ in federal court to try to block his taxes from being released in New York state,” she reported. “An emergency writ. Eight minutes after the hearing wrapped up. Nervous much? The other thing that nobody expected from Robert Mueller was his blunt accusation and assessment of what the president did with regard to Russia releasing the stolen material they hacked from the Democrats to try to benefit his campaign.”
Watch the full opener below:
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