“Trump’s Defense Strategy: Bravado, Denial, and Mockery”
If there was ever a doubt about how Donald Trump would respond to the news that Robert Mueller, the special counsel, had impanelled a grand jury in Washington, D.C., to assist with his Russia investigation, Trump dispelled it in characteristic fashion during a campaign-style rally in Huntington, West Virginia, on Thursday night.
If Mueller stays in his job, the conclusion of his investigation could still be a long way off. The special counsel is still adding to his staff and, at least in some areas of his investigation, ramping up the process of gathering information. (Impanelling a grand jury is a way for prosecutors to get subpoenas issued.) Earlier this week, Greg Andres, a veteran criminal prosecutor who headed the Justice Department’s fraud division from 2010 to 2012, left a lucrative job in private practice and became the sixteenth lawyer on Mueller’s team. “It’s an indication that the investigation is going to extend well into 2018,” Robert Ray, who succeeded Kenneth Starr as the independent counsel during the Whitewater investigation, told Reuters. “Whether it extends beyond 2018 is an open question.”