H/T The Hill.

President Trump needs to tell Mueller screw you I have nothing to say to you.

Even Jason Turley knows this is a set up and a witch hunt.

The image of FBI agents carting away computers and records of Michael Cohen, President Trump’s personal lawyer, is just the latest cringeworthy moment from the life and times of the attorney. Few would be surprised by Cohen being criminally charged. However, Cohen’s greatest danger to Trump may be not as a defendant but as bait.

Consider the curious aspect of this referral: A year ago, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had no problem with expanding Robert Mueller’s mandate to allow him to investigate and order a “no-knock raid” on former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort. Those crimes were far removed from the original purpose of the special counsel investigation, and included business transactions linked to his work in Ukraine and conduct years before the election.

Media is reporting that Mueller went to Rosenstein with the evidence against Cohen for fraud and other offenses in Russia and Ukraine, including campaign finance violations in the very election that is the subject of the original mandate. Yet, now, Rosenstein reportedly wanted Cohen investigated by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. If so, why? The offenses are far closer to Trump and the campaign than those allowed against Manafort.

 

This is why the referral to the Southern District was a move that may be as cunning as it is hostile. The timing and the manner of the raid have all of the characteristics of a wolf pit, and Trump — not Cohen — could prove to be the prize. For centuries, farmers dug pits with sharp spikes at the base, and place branches over the hole. They placed a piece of meat on the branches to attract the wolf, so that it would fall into the pit.

As I have previously written, Mueller does not appear to have a compelling criminal case against Trump for collusion with the Russians. Indeed, Trump remains a “subject,” not a target, an unchanged status after more than a year of investigation and multiple cooperative witnesses. If Trump simply stays where he is, under cover, he could well run out this investigation without a charge. But that depends on him staying there.

Cohen, however, may be just the right carrion to draw this wolf into the open. Until the raid, Trump appeared, finally, to be following the advice of his lawyers in the White House and preparing for a negotiated interview with Mueller. One day after reportedly starting to prepare for that interview, the president was thrown into a rage over the raiding of his personal lawyer’s office.

Suddenly, Trump was back on camera denouncing Mueller, Rosenstein, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, fired FBI director James Comey and others, as well as discussing the possible firing of Mueller. Most competent lawyers agree that firing Mueller, like the disastrous firing of Comey, would present an existential threat to Trump’s presidency.

Like any good wolf trap, this set-up, first and foremost, protects the hunters. By referring the matter, Mueller and Rosenstein protected themselves from criticism of expanding the investigation. At the same time, they brought into the mix U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman, who Trump interviewed and nominated, as well as a neutral magistrate who signed the search warrant.

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