During an interview with CBS This Morning, Thursday morning, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) claimed special counsel Robert Mueller has probably concluded there is no obstruction of justice case against Trump.
The senator believes Mueller would not allow the former FBI Director James Comey to give a public testimony if there were one.
“Unless Mueller is a complete idiot, which he is not, he’s concluded there’s no obstruction of justice case because if he had concluded otherwise, Comey wouldn’t be testifying,” Graham said.
“You wouldn’t let his chief and only witness go through this process if you believe you really had a case to prosecute. And Mr. Mueller is a good prosecutor.”
Now of course there is some opposition to Graham’s statement.
Ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Cali.) strongly disagreed with the senator’s statement.
“I would have to strongly disagree with my colleague Lindsey Graham. The fact that Bob Mueller is not worried about his testifying — I think that does not suggest anything about how Bob Mueller views the case,” Schiff also said on CBS This Morning.
“Indeed, I would be astonished if he had a view this early in the investigation. Rather, I think it shows confidence that Jim Comey will be consistent in his testimony before the Senate and in any later proceeding. But I wouldn’t read any conclusion into that, one way or another.”
Lindsey Graham rebutted calling Schiff’s evaluation is ‘crazy’.
“Nobody in their right mind who believed they had a case, would take their star witness and allow them to go before the nation and 20 senators,” Graham argued. “You just don’t do it that way. So he’s concluded, rightly, there’s no obstruction of justice here. To think otherwise really is silly.”
Comey is currently testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
The committee released his prepared remarks. In them, Comey confirms that he told Trump he was not under FBI investigation multiple times. Just as Trump has said.
Comey said he told the president on January 6 and on March 30 that he was not under investigation.
They also show that Trump had never pressured Comey to drop the FBI’s investigation of whether there was any collusion between his campaign and Russia.
In fact, according to Comey, Trump had said it would be “good” to find out of there were some “satellite” associates of his who did something wrong.
Comey also clarifies conversations “associates” of his had with the media. He clarified details and provided more context.
In a May 11thNew York Times report, Trump had told Comey he “needed his loyalty.”
That headline read: “In a Private Dinner, Trump Demanded Loyalty. Comey Demurred.”
However, Comey said Trump never asked him to pledge his loyalty, and Comey never refused, contrary to what the Times reported.
According to the account, Trump had said, “I need loyalty. I expect loyalty.” Comey did not respond.
Later in the conversation, he said Trump again said, “I need loyalty,” and he responded, “You will always get honesty from me.” Trump said “That’s what I want, honest loyalty,” to which Comey said, “You will get that from me.”
Comey did say he wasn’t sure what the president meant and he did not ask.
As the Times also noted in the report, “Throughout his career, Mr. Trump has made loyalty from the people who work for him a key priority, often discharging employees he considers insufficiently reliable.”
Comey also provided more context to a reported conversation he had with Trump on February 14, in which the president reportedly asked him to drop the FBI investigation on his former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, whom he had dismissed the day before.
The Washington Post ran an article on May 16 that was headlined, “Notes made by FBI Director Comey say Trump pressured him to end Flynn probe.” However, Comey’s account makes it far from clear that he was ever “pressured.”
Comey said the president said, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.” Comey said the president then turned to the subject of leaks.
Comey did not say whether he responded to the president’s comment, which he characterized as a “request.”
A White House statement at the time said, “the president has never asked Mr. Comey or anyone else to end an investigation, including any investigation involving General Flynn.”
Comey clarified that he understood the president’s comment as a request for any investigation on Flynn be dropped, but not “the broader investigation into Russia or possible links to his campaign.”
He also addressed why he didn’t tell anyone outside of senior FBI leadership about the President’s comment. He did not pass the info on to others in the FBI because he didn’t want to “infect” the investigation team. He also did not intend to abide by the request.
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) June 8, 2017