In a desperate and risky attempt to try and end the investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into possible collusion between the Trump team and Russia in the 2016 election, the president’s lawyers are now floating the idea of allowing Mueller to interview Trump before the end of 2017.
“If Mueller doesn’t request an interview by Thanksgiving, Trump’s lawyers might even force the issue by volunteering Trump’s time, the official said. The White House believes such an interview could help Mueller wrap up the probe faster and dispel the cloud of suspicion over Trump.”
However, such a move could carry giant consequences for the president. Specifically, talking to Mueller would open Trump to questions about possible obstruction of justice in the firing of former FBI Director James Comey and what Trump may have personally known about Russian efforts on his behalf.
A senior White House official commented:
“Whatever happens with regard to whether or not, or how, the special counsel might want to interview the president, there’s no reason to expect that would be combative.”
Given Trump’s propensity for lying, Mueller may prefer to have the president testify under oath–either on video or in person–before a grand jury, opening up the possibility that Trump would perjure himself, adding to his mounting legal troubles.
Asked for comment on the report from Politico, Trump attorney John Dowd responded via email by emphatically stating:
In the spring, shortly after Mueller was appointed to investigate the matter, Trump said he was eager to testify, telling reporters he was “100 percent” willing to go under oath and tell what he knows.
If indeed Trump does agree to an interview or is subpoenaed to testify, it seems likely that Mueller will have the upper hand in any future encounters. Trump has no way of knowing what facts Mueller may possess, and he will also not know what other witnesses have testified to. One slip up and Trump will indeed be toast.
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