The New York Times has published a series of questions that Special Counsel Robert Mueller allegedly wants to ask President Trump as part of his free-wheeling investigation into the Trump-Russia election collusion crime. (Remember that?)
While the source of the questions is unclear (there has been no public confirmation from Mueller’s team since the Times posted the list on Tuesday morning), the inquiries are odd, to say the least. Most sound like vague entreaties from a personal therapist: Mueller apparently wants to ask the president about his inner-most thoughts and feelings, such as how he reacted to various news reports, employment decisions and congressional hearings.
There are several questions about the president’s interviews with the media and the purpose of some of his tweets. Here’s a really weird one: “What was your opinion of Mr. Comey during the transition?” (Part of me that thinks the egotistical James Comey passed along that question himself.)
The president blasted the release of the questions, tweeting that it was “disgraceful” to leak the list and referring to the Mueller probe as a “Russian Witch Hunt!” Attorney Joe DiGenova, an informal legal advisor to the president, accused Mueller of an “outrageous, sophomoric, juvenile intrusion” on Trump’s constitutional power and called the line of questioning a “symptom of how ridiculous this appointment was.”
The public might also be losing patience with Robert Mueller. A Monmouth University poll released today shows slipping support for the nearly year-long probe: “While a majority of Americans (54 percent) support continuing the special counsel’s Russia probe, that support level is down slightly from 60 percent about two months ago. Currently, 43 percent say the investigation should end (compared with 37 percent who said the same in March).”
A Harvard-Harris poll released last week shows a majority (51 percent) of Americans think Mueller should wind down his investigation if he’s found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. (He has not.) Mueller is viewed favorably by only 39 percent of Americans; a solid majority do not want him fired. Yet.
The poll also has some bad news for Mueller’s successor: Nearly three-quarters of Americans want a special counsel to investigate abuses at the FBI.
As we approach the one-year anniversary of this investigation with no evidence of collusion, perhaps it’s time for Congress and the Justice Department to ask Mueller some questions.
Photo credit: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images; Win McNamee/Getty Images