Gregg Jarrett: Trump won't fire Mueller because the president did nothing wrong

Firing Robert Mueller is a media invention. Always has been. 

But it was resurrected on Tuesday by Roger Stone.  The informal adviser to President Trump offered his opinion, eagerly solicited by reporters, that the president should sack the special counsel because his impartiality is hopelessly compromised by a myriad of conflicts of interests. 

Stone was correct, in part.  Mueller is deeply conflicted.  The day after being interviewed and rejected by President Trump to become the new FBI Director, Mueller turned around and accepted the job as special counsel.  In the span of 24 hours, Mueller went from asking to work for the president… to investigating him.  It was quite the somersault.  At the very least, it created the appearance of impropriety which disqualifies him.    

Yet, Mueller accepted the position anyway, even though he also knew the key witness in any potential obstruction of justice case would be his longtime friend, ally and partner, James Comey.  This constitutes yet another conspicuous conflict of interest, as I have explained in previous columns.    

But the mainstream media has seized on Stone’s recent statement to once again whip up a frenzy of conjecture that the president will fire Mueller.  It is not the first time.

The same can be said of any obstruction of justice case against Trump for his firing of James Comey. Why would the president try to interfere in an FBI investigation if he committed no wrong? It makes little sense to obstruct a non-crime.

For months there has been rampant speculation in print and television that Trump was on the precipice of firing the special counsel.  Perhaps this is because the press knows, but would never admit, that Mueller deserves it.  But mostly it is because the media would love to use Mueller’s termination as an excuse to demand Trump’s impeachment.

The president is smarter than that. Why should Trump fire someone who appears to have found no evidence that he “colluded” with Russians to influence the outcome of the presidential election?  Likely, it cannot be found because it never happened.  The FBI has spent more than a year investigating the matter, yet seems to have come up empty-handed. 

Did Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner have a conversation with a Russian lawyer during the campaign?  Yes.  They spoke principally about adoptions.  Even if the attorney provided information about Hillary Clinton, it is not prohibited under federal election laws.  A foreign national is entitled to volunteer personal services and information to American political campaigns.  It is not a crime to talk to a Russian, although the media seems oblivious to this concept. 

Did Jeff Sessions meet with the Russian Ambassador to the U.S. before the November election?  Yes.  So did countless other senators, including many Democrats.  There is nothing nefarious about that.  It is what foreign ambassadors are supposed to do.  It is the reason they are stationed here. 

Which brings us to Paul Manafort and Gen. Michael Flynn.

Manafort, who spent a scant two months as Trump’s campaign manager in 2016, has reportedly been told by Mueller’s team that he will be indicted.  There is no indication made public so far that it has anything to do with Russia’s interference in our election.  More likely, any charges would involve Manafort’s considerable business dealings overseas which pre-date his involvement in the Trump campaign. 

Flynn, who served briefly as Trump’s National Security Adviser before being fired, may also face charges.  But again, it appears to have no connection to election meddling or “collusion.”  Instead, Flynn’s financial transactions have come under scrutiny, as well as statements he may or may not have made to the government during the process of gaining security clearance. 

Will Mueller attempt to “flip” Manafort and/or Flynn to gain evidence against Trump?  Naturally.  It is what prosecutors often do.  But if Trump committed no wrongdoing, the two men may have nothing incriminating to provide.    

By most accounts, the White House has been cooperative with the Mueller probe, and Trump’s legal team has been forthcoming in offering whatever the special counsel’s office has requested.  And why not?  If there is nothing to hide, there is no reason to resist.   

Some senators are considering legislation to block Mueller’s potential firing.  Clearly, they've fallen for the media canard.  Sen. Lindsey Graham, who has a propensity for stating the obvious, said, “I just want everybody in America to know that (Mueller) is going to do his job without fear of reprisal.”

Trump has repeatedly insisted he never spoke with any Russians about the election and, if someone else in his campaign did, he knew nothing about it.  If true, then Graham and others have no reason to fear that Trump will fire a special counsel who cannot find what does not exist. 

The same can be said of any obstruction of justice case against Trump for his firing of James Comey.  Why would the president try to interfere in an FBI investigation if he committed no wrong?  It makes little sense to obstruct a non-crime. 

Instead, the president took action against Comey for all the reasons stated in the memorandum authored by Deputy Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein, who recommended he be axed.  Since then, even more evidence has surfaced that Comey may himself have obstructed the Hillary Clinton email case, testified falsely before Congress, stolen government documents, and leaked them to the media. 

Was the president frustrated when Comey refused to tell the public the truth that Trump was not personally under investigation for collaborating with Russia?   Of course.  Even Comey admitted as much in his testimony before Congress. 

But all of that obscures the larger point that, as chief executive, the president has the constitutional authority to fire anyone, including the FBI Director, for any reason or no reason at all, which Comey also conceded in his departure letter to colleagues at the bureau.  Moreover, in most obstruction cases, there must be some evidence of a threat, bribe or lie.  Comey has leveled no such allegations. 

The mainstream media, which exhibit no pretense in their unabashed scorn for Trump, will continue to peddle the fiction that the president is about to fire the special counsel any minute now.  They will be left disappointed. 

President Trump has no intention of doing so, even though Mueller’s conflicts of interest should have disqualified him from serving in the first place.

Gregg Jarrett is a Fox News legal analyst and former defense attorney.