Former US Attorney General John Lauro spoke with CNBC about Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment of former Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort. Lauro made mention of the laundry list of charges Manafort faced, but mentioned specifically that he thought Mueller did the most to insulate himself from the possibility of Donald Trump firing him by adding the “item” about Manafort’s son-in-law.
John Lauro believes that inclusion pressures Paul Manafort to cooperate and also provides Mueller himself cover from Trump’s ire moving forward.
“No one is gonna touch him,” said Lauro of Robert Mueller. He added that Mueller can’t be fired by the president because:
“Trump would be impeached the next day if he tried to remove Mueller.”
The panel discussed the other “prisoner’s dilemma” orchestrated by the indictments of Paul Manafort and Rick Gates. The consensus was that the indictments were released simultaneously because doing so will pressure each of them to flip. After all, if one provides information the special counsel deems useful enough to be worthy of a deal, the other is screwed. The longer Manafort or Gates will wait to give Robert Mueller’s team substantive information, the further any potential returns will diminish.
Mr. Lauro said the itemized nature of the documents against Paul Manafort and Rick Gates are typical of a “speaking indictment” meant to signal to both men that the investigation has been thorough, the evidence is strong, and the charges are serious.
Though none of Manafort’s charges were specifically related to his capacity within Donald Trump’s campaign, it is clear that Manafort is the one Mueller wants. Lauro indicated that he thinks Mueller is the ultimate goal.