Is the Mueller probe coming apart?
Another member of the team investigating Russian election meddling has a history that raises questions about bias.
Lawyer Jeannie Rhee is a former partner at the law firm WilmerHale, where Robert Mueller worked prior to assuming the office of Special Counsel. Two other attorneys left WilmerHale to work with Mueller in his current capacity.
Rhee, who specialized in government investigations and white-collar criminal probes, represented Obama Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes during the House Select Committee on Benghazi’s investigation into the 2012 Benghazi attack, Fox News reports.
Rhee also represented the Clinton Foundation in 2015, when conservative activist group Freedom Watch filed a racketeering lawsuit against the suspect foundation. Additionally, Rhee represented Hillary Clinton in a lawsuit that sought access to her private emails.
Rhee’s husband, Christopher Sclafani, is a lawyer who has worked with prominent Democrats, including serving as a special assistant to then-Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder and as counsel to Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL).
Campaign donations records show that Rhee highly favors Democratic political candidates. She donated a total of $5,400 to Clinton in 2015 and 2016, and $4,800 to Barack Obama in both 2008 and 2011. Rhee has donated smaller amounts to the Democratic National Committee and Democrats in Congressional races.
For a time, Rhee served as an assistant U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia under FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, whose wife received donations from Clinton allies while running for Virginia State Senate.
In her role with the Special Counsel team, Rhee focuses on claims that President Trump committed obstruction of justice by firing James Comey as FBI director.
The revelation follows news that Mueller removed FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok from the Russia probe over anti-Trump text messages he sent to his mistress and colleague, attorney Lisa Page.
Andrew Weissmann, another member of the team who previously worked at WilmerHale, was also accused of bias for sending then-outgoing acting Attorney General Sally Yates a praise-filled email after she refused to defend President Trump’s travel ban.
“I am so proud,” Weissmann wrote. “And in awe. Thank you so much. All my deepest respects.”
The perception of bias has prompted many to argue Robert Mueller should resign as Special Counsel.
Whether Mueller steps down or not, the integrity of his investigation has perhaps been irreparably damaged.