Mueller’s Fruit of the Poisonous Tree - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Mueller’s Fruit of the Poisonous Tree

Evidence of Robert Mueller’s hopelessly compromised investigation continues to accumulate. Now we learn that five months of texts between two members of his team plotting Trump’s demise have disappeared, a time period that covers many of the crucial moments of the probe. Imagine the rich harvest of texts Peter Strzok and his mistress Lisa Page must have exchanged over the Flynn entrapment. Those texts have vanished, according to the FBI and Justice Department. To a media that has spent months insisting on the reliability and impartiality of those agencies, this story is terribly inconvenient.

Once again, Trump’s criticisms are vindicated. Go back and look at even his most inflammatory tweets about Obamagate and they all hold up. His campaign was wire-tapped; FBI agents were plotting against him; Obama’s FBI director was leaking to the press; the FBI was collaborating with Hillary’s opposition researchers; the FBI/Justice Department exoneration of Hillary was rigged.

The great villain in the media’s tale of collusion turns out to be the victim. But the ruling class is too shameless to stop hounding him. They will continue to try and extract fruit from Mueller’s poisonous tree. Who cares, they say, if he is a friend of Comey’s? Who cares if most of his staff donated to Hillary and the Democrats? Who cares if members of his team called Trump an “utter idiot,” “douche,” and took out an “insurance policy” against him? Who cares if the government obtained FISA warrants based on a political smear Hillary financed?

In a courtroom, the fruit of a poisonous tree is tossed out. In politics, the tree is shaken until rotten fruit, usually a minor process crime or a crime wholly unrelated to the investigation, falls from it. Imagine all the crimes a second special counsel would find if he investigated the investigators. One of the texts between Strzok and Page that didn’t vanish makes reference to a “secret society,” according to those who have seen it. Congressman John Ratcliffe of Texas told Fox News, “We learned today about information that in the immediate aftermath of [Trump’s] election, that there may have been a secret society of folks within the Department of Justice and the FBI — to include Page and Strzok — that would be working against him.”

Recall the media furor over Trump’s tweets about the FBI’s tarnished reputation. Those tweets now look, if anything, understated. The “secret society” explains what under any other circumstances would have been inconceivable: the FBI working with one presidential campaign against another. The FBI even subsidized that campaign’s opposition research, making payments of some kind to Hillary’s researcher, Christopher Steele. The incestuousness of it all is still coming into focus. The wife of one top Justice Department official worked for Hillary’s opposition research firm Fusion GPS, and more revelations about it are sure to follow.

The media still obsesses over Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with Russians, from which nothing came. But it sees no significance in Hillary hiring an opposition research firm that counted Russian officials as clients and sources. How much of Steele’s work is the product of disinformation from those officials is still not known.

In the latest batch of released Strzok-Page texts, the cynicism of this Russian investigation becomes even clearer. Strzok indicates that he doesn’t think Mueller will find anything — he senses “there’s no big there there” — but joins his probe anyways because he has “unfinished business” with Trump.

What emerges from all this evidence of astonishing bias is a probe that didn’t seek to discover a crime but create one. The goal was to scare Trump officials into committing minor process crimes and Michael Flynn tripped up under that pressure. Now the hope of the investigators is that they can set a perjury trap for Trump. On Tuesday, as the media ignored the Strzok story, it made great noise about Comey sharing memos with Mueller about his meetings with Trump. The same journalists who pooh-poohed the FBI’s anti-Trump plotting perked up at news of Mueller interviewing his close friend.

This is not the slow unfolding of justice but scenes from a show trial, one in which the only serious crimes are committed by abusive prosecutors and investigators, so intoxicated by their own political self-righteousness that they can brag to their paramours about the “fix” on Trump.

George Neumayr
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George Neumayr, a senior editor at The American Spectator, is author most recently of The Biden Deception: Moderate, Opportunist, or the Democrats' Crypto-Socialist?
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