Tags: Russia Probe | alan dershowitz | robert mueller | special counsel

Dershowitz: Mueller Should Remain as Special Counsel

Image: Dershowitz: Mueller Should Remain as Special Counsel
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By    |   Wednesday, 24 January 2018 01:15 PM

Even with news reports growing daily about the FBI, Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz said he would not suggest removing Robert Mueller as special counsel for the probe investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election.

"Robert Mueller is a decent man accused of overxealouness by people on the other side, but I don't think he is a partisan," Dershowitz told Fox News' "America's Newsroom" co-host Bill Hemmer. "I don't think he cares whether his investigation hurts the Republicans or Democrats."

Further, Dershowitz said he thinks Mueller, a former FBI director, is a "very, very tough prosecutor. If I'm an innocent person, I would like him to be the special prosecutor. If I'm guilty, I would be worried."

He does think though, that "every civil libertarian, whether a liberal or conservative, should be concerned about this in the FBI," where the reports of missing text messages between FBI agent Peter Strzok and attorney Lisa Page, and claims of secret meetings concerning President Donald Trump are concerned.

"For years they've been worried about abuses since the days of J. Edgar Hoover and suddenly many are saying we'll give them a pass if they are going after Donald Trump," said Dershowitz. "That's not the right approach. We have to have complete transparency and know what our intelligence agent seals are doing and make sure they are not exceeding their authority or violating the trust of the American people. "

Meanwhile, he said he does not believe Trump has any other choice than to sit with Mueller's team.

"First of all, he can be subpoenaed," said Dershowitz. "Mueller has the authority to issue a subpoena and compel him to meet with his lawyer and without any restrictions on subject matter."

Nobody, even Trump, is above the law when it comes to a grand jury subpoena, he continued.

"The president's lawyers would prefer to have written questions and written answers," said Dershowitz. "I don't think Mueller will accept that. I think in the end there will be no choice but to sit down and have an interview limited in time, limited in scope with his lawyers present and hopefully he will answer the questions yes and no without elaborating too much. That's the hope that his lawyers have."

Trump's lawyers will also want to be able to control the situation and not allow Mueller to ask him to "go far afield" or to make statements with gaps that could hurt him.

"Remember, the president doesn't know what he doesn't know," said Dershowitz. "He doesn't know whether there are emails or anything else that might contradict something he says ... he has to be very careful how he answers these questions."

He said he does think the investigation is more about obstruction of justice rather than Russian interference.

"If the president were to be charged with obstruction for exercising his constitutional authority, firing [James] Comey and telling Comey not to investigate Flynn, those are all within the president's constitutional authority," said Dershowitz. "The other place it may be going is toward collusion. That is not a crime. I would think the special prosecutor should limit himself to matters that are criminal and thus far I have not heard evidence to suggest that any crimes were committed in or near the Oval Office."

He said he's also concerned that the investigation will end "not with a bang but a whimper, with some low-hanging fruit, people being indicted for things that aren't directly related to the thrust of the investigation."

But if Mueller goes after Trump for obstruction of justice, that could "create a constitutional crisis," Dershowitz concluded.

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Even with news reports growing daily about the FBI, Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz said he would not suggest removing Robert Mueller as special counsel for the probe investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election.
alan dershowitz, robert mueller, special counsel
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2018-15-24
Wednesday, 24 January 2018 01:15 PM
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