Former Trump lawyer John Dowd has one prediction for his former boss: vindication.
Dowd called Robert Mueller’s investigation a “waste of time” that will end with Trump getting cleared.
“I don’t think there’ll be a report,” Dowd told a new ABC podcast about the probe, The Investigation. “I will be shocked if anything regarding the president is made public, other than ‘We’re done.’”
Trump lawyer predicts vindication for Trump
Dowd was with Trump for months as the special counsel’s investigation unfolded. He left Trump’s legal team in March over differences in opinion about whether and how to cooperate with Mueller, but clearly shares his boss’s opinions of Mueller and the “Witch Hunt” investigation. Mueller’s probe, Dowd said, is “one of the greatest frauds this country’s ever seen.”
Dowd said that Trump was cooperative with the probe, that he has seen what Mueller has and that there is nothing to implicate the president. He predicted that Mueller won’t release a report.
“I know exactly what [Mueller] has,” Dowd said. “I know exactly what every witness said, what every document said. I know exactly what he asked. And I know what the conclusion or the result is,” he said. “There’s no basis. There’s no exposure. It’s been a terrible waste of time.”
Mueller’s investigation has indicted several Russians and Trump associates on crimes unrelated to collusion. Some Justice Department officials have come to Mueller’s defense, including Trump ally acting attorney general Matthew Whitaker, who told Congress in testimony last week, “I do believe [Mueller] is honest.”
But Whitaker also faced a storm of criticism over his past critiques of Mueller’s probe, and Democrats have made unwavering loyalty to Mueller a litmus test of American patriotism, so there is a lot of pressure on Justice Department officials to signal loyalty to the special counsel.
Advises Mueller to “Knock it off”
Dowd was Trump’s top lawyer as negotiations unfolded on whether Trump should sit down with Mueller for a face-to-face interview, something that Dowd strenuously objected to, and with good reason. Mueller, Dowd said, has been pursuing a reckless prosecution littered with “perjury traps” – legal lingo for a strategy to trick a witness into lying to make them vulnerable, then flip them with a plea bargain.
Dowd said that Mueller’s approach is “petty”, a sentiment shared by many critics of the investigation, who feel that the show of force against Roger Stone for lying to Congress was troubling, to say the least. Mueller, Dowd said, is pursuing “What I call nickel-dime process crimes. I ran a strike force. I ran big corruption cases. I didn’t go around, picking scabs and just making any case I could make. If there was a petty case, I shifted it to someone else. I didn’t do it. And that’s where I disagree with Bob.”
Dowd said that he didn’t want Trump to sit down with Mueller because he was concerned Trump would get overloaded with information, forget something and fall into a perjury trap – not because Trump would lie on purpose.
“In my questioning him or talking to him, you know, first question, easy. Second question, easy. Third question, he wasn’t sure. And he doesn’t like being unsure. So he’ll guess,” Dowd said. “There’s your trap, right there. It’s not whether he lies or not… It’s not a matter of integrity. It’s overload.”
Dowd said that Mueller’s probe should have ended last year and advised Mueller to “knock it off, get it done,” adding, “your job is to find out if there’s collusion or there was obstruction,” he said. “And the answer’s ‘no,’ so let’s get on with it.”