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Is this the last countdown? : NPR



Special Adviser Robert Mueller Leaves for a Closing Meeting with Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 21

, 2017 at the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

Alex Wong / Getty pictures


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Special Adviser Robert Mueller leaves the Capitol Building in Washington D.C. after a closed meeting with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 21, 2017.

Alex Wong / Getty Images

This week in the investigation in Russia: The countdown is on – right? How long does Bruce Ohr still have in the Ministry of Justice? How much should Big Tech deal with the threat of Congress?

The ticking clock

Next Friday, September 7, 60 days will be marked until Election Day. After the argument that the special adviser of the Ministry of Justice, Robert Mueller, does not want to influence the term of office, he has still one week time to take a step, before he must be very quiet.

What remains on Muller's to-do list? That depends on what his investigators found out and how much more they could know about the case in Russia than in public.

Donald Trump's longtime political advisor Roger Stone has told anyone who listens to what he's waiting for Accused – falsely, says Stone, because he says he did not break a law – but there's no way to know what they think should.

Could WikiLeaks boss Julian Assange spread the embarrassing material of Russian military intelligence and manipulate a lot of insanity in the 2016 election, the next candidate for Müller's honorary role?

What about Donald Trump Jr.? The son of the president asked for support from the Russian government for the Trump campaign in response to the offer she had made in June 2016 as an intermediary.

A Russian delegation visited the Trump Tower to meet with Trump Jr. and others, campaigners, to give a hint on what the Russians called possible Democrat misconduct. But because the tip required more investigation and did not directly imply Hillary Clinton, Trump Jr. says he did not persecute him.

Then there is the president himself. He says that all this is a "witch hunt" and that Müller is "embarrassed and discredited". Trump has the possibility of meddling in a Ministry of Justice The pocket of the Democrats

So if the Justice Department does something first – something that disgusts the President next week – It could get hot soon. Trump is upset by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, angry at Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and very angry at Müller.

If something happens that puts this situation in focus, maybe this is the time.

However, Mueller may not be bound to any of this.

The "You Must Do Nothing Political Within 60 Days After a Election" Rule is not carved in the marble at the Department of Justice in Washington, DC Trump's name is not on the ballot this fall. You can not tell how much the "time-over" plot is real and how much wishful thinking the White House has to support its PR strategy aimed at portraying Muller as a villain.

And When Mueller lands on the bottom of the ocean from 7th September to 7th November, nothing, as far as the public understands today, prevents him from reappearing on 8th November when he returns has more to do.

Borrowed Time

Judicial officer Bruce Ohr, center, arrives at a closed hearing of the Committees on Homicial Justice and Home Inspectorate on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, August 28, 2018.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP


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Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

On Tuesday, August 28, 2018, the Justice Department official, Bruce Ohr, arrives at a closed hearing of the House Justice and Housing Committees on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

"How the hell is Bruce Ohr still employed in the Justice Department? Shameful! Witch hunt!"

These were the words of the President of the United States on Wednesday after visiting the Justice Department's Ear to Capitol Hill for an interview behind closed doors with the House Justice and Supervision Committees

Ohr is an expert on organized crime in Russia and he was a main contact in 2016 between the federal police and former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, who authored the notorious Russia dossier.

The Republicans have the brunt of their attacks on the Steele case and the dossier and all those involved, including Ohr and his wife Nellie, who hired Fusion GPS, the political intelligence firm in Washington, to create Steele's dossier, worked.

Steele and the dossier were not the genes of the Russia investigation, but Republicans often say they are. The telltale claims and the fact that the material is partially unconfirmed make it the weakest stone in the investigation. The parts that the FBI has verified remain secret.

So, if the Republicans see clearly Ohr's political wrongdoing – his connections to Steele and Fusion GPS – it's not clear if he could have done any misdeeds significant enough for the leadership by the Justice Department to get him his job to taste.

The department has become quiet about the case of Ohr, to the extent even inclined to answer questions about what his current job is.

Could he be the next FBI or DOJ official who sees the door in Trumps and Republicans as overdue bills? The president and his supporters say he should and must be. At least Trump has suggested that he could do the security clearance from Ohr.

For Democrats and other critics, this is all part of a political purge called a Saturday Night Massacre in slow motion.

One fear expressed by these critics that, if it comes to ear, the Republicans will not stay with him – they will find other political goals to their war because of "bias" within the federal laws am To keep life. 19659042] DOJ tries again in silence. But after he finishes having Or-harassed an official to end the process or put pressure on him, he'll move on to the next one. This will happen over and over again. https://t.co/175SnU123Z

– Susan Hennessey (@Susan_Hennessey) August 29, 2018

Techlash

Big Tech's friends leave in Washington. On Sept. 5, the US Senate Intelligence Committee has scheduled another hearing with the heads of Facebook and Twitter to discuss what they are doing to prevent another round of social media agitation. 19659012] Larry Page, CEO of Google's parent company Alphabet, has also been invited, but has not committed to appear – and Chairman of the Board Richard Burr, RN.C., has not accepted the offer of another Google employee. So the search giant could finally be represented by an empty chair.

Expected to be Facebook boss Sheryl Sandberg and Twitter boss Jack Dorsey, who must ask themselves what they have improved since the last company success. Round under the Klieg lights. They say that they do a lot and Facebook has especially started a great goodwill campaign, right down to ads in D.C.'s subway system.

Will that be good enough? Sneak Preview: No. And especially Dorsey is going to have a hard day republicans reinforcing their arguments – led by Trump – about online censorship of the Conservatives . Dorsey will not only wire brush with Sandberg from the US Senate Intelligence Committee, but later the day before the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

What does all this mean? Big Tech is unlikely to pose a threat of new restrictions or laws that would provide better protection against a 2016-like Influence Campaign. For now. However, it does not want its political ECG trend line to continue to decline.


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