Those looking at former FBI Director Robert Mueller's high-profile investigation into the NFL and what it might suggest for his probe into Russia are comparing apples and oranges, Politico reported.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell hired Mueller in 2014 to determine if the league had mishandled its response to the infamous domestic violence incident involving Ray Rice, who punched and knocked out his then-fiancee in an elevator.
So, the crux of Muller's investigation was whether anyone in the NFL had the full video of Rice's punch — which went viral quickly and incensed the world — and was sitting on it when Goodell levied his punishment.
"It was like someone committed a crime, and they wanted to follow all the facts about what color shoes they were wearing, and really get to the bottom of that," Terry O'Neill, president of the National Organization for Women, told Politico.
"The questions were narrow enough in scope that Mueller answered the questions, all right. The problem is that he was asking all the wrong questions."
But that's what the NFL hired Mueller to do. The NFL did not hire Mueller to investigate whether the league looked the other way from a culture of violence in order to protect its stars like Rice, then a running back for the Baltimore Ravens, Politico reported.
Mueller's investigation into Russia, its meddling in the election, and what if any ties it had to President Donald Trump's campaign is a federal probe, not a corporate one.
"He's an FBI bureaucrat through and through, in a good way," one former law enforcement official told Politico. "He's going to say, 'Here's what the law is, here's what these idiots did, and did they break any statutes.' If the answer is no, then that's going to be the end of it."
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