The headline is based on the time I watched Tropic Thunder on TBS a few years ago. When they got to the “never go full retard” line, the censor changed it to “full special”. I thought you’d appreciate it. Hey, I was proud of that one. Shut up.
Anyway, I did a GoDuckGo search on the difference between a special prosecutor and a special counsel. Now that I know (there isn’t really one), I’m sufficiently qualified to post about this new chapter in the story of the goddamingest of presidencies in the history of the Republic.
As you’ve no doubt heard, Trump’s Assistant Attorney General, Ron Rosenstein, has appointed Robert Mueller as a special counsel to investigate all things related to the 2016 Election, Russia’s interference in the same, and anything else that happens to come up.
Many on the Right are upset about this. Rosenstein is getting a lot of undeserved criticism for doing it. They should save it for later. Rosenstein had no choice. Sessions had recused himself and Rosenstein was the one who drafted the recommendation to fire Comey. Therefore, he was now a party to the whole thing, even though he had just joined the Administration and hadn’t participated in the campaign.
Thanks to Trump running his mouth and changing the story around about why Comey was fired combined with the fact that Democrats weren’t going to allow any FBI Director nominee get through Congress, the alternative was to let McCabe continue the investigation. Well, that wouldn’t have been a good idea, considering his history. Doing this at least allowed Rosenstein to pick who the Administration would be most comfortable assigning the investigation to and who the Democrats could screech the least about. Mueller was a good choice.
Leave Rosenstein alone. This is ultimately Trump’s fault and the decision to appoint a special counsel was probably made by Trump himself. He boxed himself in, in any event.
One thing I’m curious to know is whether or not we can all agree that it’s for the best that Comey was fired. Does anybody really believe that the there’s any conclusion he could have made in the investigation that would have satisfied even half of the public? I don’t see it. The guy’s credibility was shredded.
Mueller doesn’t have Comey’s baggage. Whatever happens at the end will have legitimacy, whether one party or the other likes it or not. More importantly, it will bring finality.
Last week, I observed that once Comey was fired, the appointment of a special counsel was necessary. That doesn’t mean I favored it. I was bowing to reality. It just so happened that over the past week, absolutely everything that Trump did or had revealed that he did previously made it more unavoidable and hastier than it might otherwise have been.
If I were Trump, I wouldn’t have wanted this to happen. But you get what you get. If you don’t control yourself, you don’t get to control who’s running a major investigation about you either.
I hate to make any predictions about what we can expect now. Once a special counsel/prosecutor/whatever gets turned loose, anything can happen. They may uncover an entirely new scandal that dwarfs the initial cause for investigation (Ken Starr and Monica) or they may continue an investigation long past its need only to snare a low-level player for a crime that the investigation itself brought about (Patrick Fitzgerald and Scooter).
So what I’m going to predict is all of this:
- There’s going to be no quick resolution to the question of whether or not Trump or the campaign colluded with Russia. I’ll say that we won’t have any word on that one way or the other for the remainder of 2017 and maybe not even a year from now.
- I don’t expect there to be any proof of collusion found, but it won’t matter because the Big Story will be about something else by the time it wraps up.
- Mueller will do a better job of controlling leaks from the investigation than Comey was.
- Mueller will not discover any of the original leakers or even seriously pursue them. Would be nice if Sessions would get on that though.
- Flynn will definitely be prosecuted for something. When you think about how centered he is on this whole shitstorm, it’s unimaginable that he’d come out unscathed. I can’t say for sure who else. Wouldn’t be surprised if they get an obstruction charge out of Manafort or somebody we’ve never heard of.
- Trump can now pick his own FBI Director and he’ll go with someone outrageous and partisan. Trump might as well go the other direction and get someone who will unleash some payback within the Bureau.
Mueller is going to have the same FBI counterintelligence agents working the investigation who already were. Comey had noted during his last testimony to Congress that if a special prosecutor were appointed, the FBI team would simply stop reporting to him and report to the special prosecutor instead.
This is why I’ve been arguing with some of you that Comey’s firing had no impact on the TrumpRussia investigation. But, again, nobody was going to accept the findings of the investigation under those circumstances, were they?
In other words, I think the whole thing is going to go the same way and for the same amount of time it was if Comey hadn’t been fired. With the exception of the leaking, of course. The only difference is that Comey’s taint won’t be all over the outcome (eww, right).
Anyway, don’t hold me to all that too closely. It’s time to buckle up because this ride is going to be wild.