During special counsel Robert Mueller’s testimony to the House Judiciary Committee early Wednesday morning, committee member Rep. Louie Gohmert acerbically grilled him over the alleged conflicts of interests and corruption linked to his investigation into alleged Russian collusion.
Moreover, he accused Mueller of having “perpetuated injustice.”
“You note in the report that an element of any of those obstructions you referenced requires a corrupt state of mind,” he said near the end of the back-and-forth exchange.
“And if someone knows they did not conspire with anybody from Russia to affect the election, and they see the big Justice Department with people who hate that person coming after them, and then a special counsel appointed who hires dozens or more people who hate that person, and he knows he’s innocent, he’s not corruptly acting in order to see justice is done.”
“What he’s doing is not obstructing justice,” he added, referencing President Donald Trump. “He is pursuing justice, and the fact that you ran it out two years means YOU perpetuated injustice!”
Listen to the whole exchange below, or fast-forward to 4:20 for the juicy part:
The grilling covered everything from the speech he delivered during a press conference in late May to his longtime friendship with disgraced former FBI Director James Comey, his stunning decision to recruit an FBI official who was later outed as an anti-Trump zealot and his even more stunning decision to not exonerate the president of obstruction of justice.
The Texas Republican’s grilling began with him questioning Mueller about the speech he delivered during a press conference in late May.
“Who wrote the nine-minute comments you read at your May 29th press conference?” he asked.
“I’m not going to get into that,” Mueller replied.
“OK, so that’s what I thought, you didn’t write it,” Gohmert said, to which Mueller responded by smirking.
Texas Republican @replouiegohmert asks Mueller who wrote his remarks on his investigation from May 29 and Mueller says “I’m not going to get into that.” Gohmert pops back, “That’s what I thought. You didn’t write it.”
— John R Parkinson (@jparkABC) July 24, 2019
The Texas congressman continued by questioning Mueller over his longtime friendship with disgraced former FBI Director James Comey.
“A 2013 puff piece in The Washingtonian about Comey said basically when Comey called, you dropped everything you were doing. Gave examples — you having dinner with your wife and daughter, Comey calls, you drop everything and go,” he said. “Article quoted Comey as saying, ‘If a train were coming down the track, at least Bob Mueller will be standing on the tracks with me.”
“You and James Comey have been good friends for many years, correct?” he then asked, to which Mueller tried to obfuscate at first by saying that they were business associates.
“You were good friends,” Gohmert pressed. “You can work together and not be friends. But you were friends?”
“We were friends,” Mueller finally conceded.
“Before you were appointed as special counsel, had you talked to James Comey in the preceding six months,” Gohmert then asked.
“No,” Mueller replied.
“When you were appointed as special counsel, was President Trump’s firing of Comey something you anticipated investigating — potentially obstruction of justice?” the lawmaker pressed.
“I’m not going to get into that,” the special counsel replied.
“Actually, it goes to your credibility — maybe you’ve been away from the courtroom for awhile, credibility is always relevant. It’s always material, and that goes for YOU TOO,” Gohmert fired back.
Thank you, @replouiegohmert for always speaking for the People!! Well done!!
— ✝️TRUMP MOMENTS✝️ (@TRUMPMOMENTS411) July 24, 2019
Thank you @replouiegohmert Enjoyed your questioning as always. This Mueller seems confused and all over the place.
— cmad (@cmad39912159) July 24, 2019
@replouiegohmert THANK YOU!
We need to remember that even a career , Republican, FBI director is not above scrutiny…his bias and lack of credibility was exposed in this exchange. ?@TWITMO_INMATE @sh_irredeemable @Texas_yeeyee @letsberealppl2 @SaraGonzalesTX @willhoerter https://t.co/uUKqmvluUR
— I’mAnAmerican????? (@jse_amor) July 24, 2019
@replouiegohmert You dear Sir, get a silver star, or at the very least the Trump Straws, for shining light, on the #injustice of the #MuellerTestimony, and at #Mueller himself. Our forefathers, salute you, and thank you. pic.twitter.com/L64cHlnCHB
— White_Wolf ⭐⭐⭐ (@whitewolf2226) July 24, 2019
The Texas lawmaker then questioned Mueller about his decision to recruit since-disgraced former FBI special agent Peter Strzok (who was removed after it was learned he’d exchanged anti-Trump text messages with his paramour, disgraced former FBI attorney Lisa Page) to serve on his investigation team.
Gohmert: “When did you first learn of Peter Strozk’s animus toward Donald Trump?”
Mueller: “In the summer of 2017.”
Gohmert: “You didn’t know before he was hired for your team?”
Mueller: “I did not know that. And when we did find out, I acted swiftly to get him reassigned elsewhere.”
Gohmert: “Well, there’s some discussion about how swift that was.”
The lawmaker continued by asking the special counsel whether he ever investigated the still-unexplained deletion of Strzok and Page’s text messages.
Mueller said no. As an excuse, he said that an investigation by the DOJ’s Inspector General had been ongoing at the time.
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