Special counsel Robert Mueller is probing Trump adviser Roger Stone’s activities and negotiating with President Trump’s legal team over a request to interview him.
For seven weeks, special counsel Robert Mueller has been silent. In the run-up to Election Day, there were no indictments from the special counsel’s office, in keeping with Justice Department guidelines that prosecutors should avoid taking steps that could be perceived as intending to influence the outcome of the vote, the Washington Post reports. With the elections now over, Mueller faces key decision points in his 18-month-old investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 campaign. The probe already has led to charges against 32 people, including 26 Russians. Four aides to President Trump have pleaded guilty, most recently his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort. Among the most pressing matters now before the special counsel: a probe into Trump adviser Roger Stone’s activities and negotiations with Trump’s legal team over a request to interview him.
For months, Mueller has been seeking to question Trump to examine whether the president has sought to obstruct the probe. There also the looming likelihood that Trump could soon dismiss Attorney General Jeff Sessions — a shake-up that could spell the end of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s oversight of the investigation. Jacob Frenkel, a former state and federal prosecutor, noted that by keeping a low profile, Mueller avoided the criticism that then-FBI Director James Comey faced when he made announcements about an investigation into Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s email practices in the final weeks of the 2016 race. Frenkel does not expect Mueller’s silence to continue for long. “For me, the question is, ‘How many indictments and who?’” Frenkel said. “It is not an ‘if.’”