Joe Lieberman is the rumored front runner to replace James Comey as the new FBI director, and Trump is dreaming that because he’s a former Democratic Senator, Democrats will jump on board. Lieberman is no Robert Mueller. Mueller has support from Democrats because he has the experience needed to do the job and as important, he does not have ties to Donald Trump.
Joe Lieberman works for Kasowitz, Benson, Torres and Friedman one of Trump’s go to law firms.
As of this writing, Lieberman’s bio is on the firm’s website. It highlights his “investigative” skills as “United States Senator and Attorney General of the State of Connecticut. He is described as a “seasoned leader” who is skilled in the art of facilitating mutally beneficial and strategic agreements. Senator Lieberman also assists corporate clients on tax, healthcare, security and intellectual property matters. In addition, he counsels clients on international expansion initiatives and business plans.
This is a screengrab of Lieberman’s bio.
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The firm has respresented Donald Trump on several matters. As reported by Newsweek, this is the law firm that threatened the New York Times with a legal action last October, when the NYT published some pages of Trump’s 1995 tax return. Later that month, Marc Kasowitz, a partner in the firm, wrote a threatening letter to the NYT demanding it retract an article about two women who claimed Trump touched them “inappropriately.”
The firm also sued an author on Trump’s behalf over suggestions that Trump is worth less than $1billion. When Trump wanted to keep his divorce records sealed, he Hired Kasowitz’s firm. The firm also did some work for Trump on the Trump University fraud case and sued Trump’s Hong Kong business partners over a Manhatten property. The Trump Organization’s general counsel, Alan Garten reportedly told the WSJ Kasowitz has “always been a guy you go to when you have complex, intricate legal problems.”
The fact that Lieberman works for one of the law firms that represents Donald Trump, alone disqualifies him because there is an obvious conflict of interest on any and all investigations regarding Donald Trump – like the Trump/Russia investigation.
Generally, Lieberman doesn’t pass the sniff test for the independence from Trump’s political influence that is crucial to do the job of FBI Director – even if Trump and others in his administration were not the subject of counter intelligence and/or criminal investigations.
Trump’s preference would be to shut down any investigation into his and his campaign’s relationship with Russia. His attempts to interfere with or discredit investigations by House and Senate committees are documented. He attempted to intimidate former FBI Director James Comey into dropping investigations against Michael Flynn and “the Russia thing”. When that failed, Trump fired Comey and tried to intimidate him again via Twitter, when word got out that Comey would testify to Congress.
By placing Lieberman as Director of the FBI, Trump is hoping to have eyes and ears on what would otherwise be a secret investigation by the Special Counsel. No doubt, Robert Mueller will have his own investigatory resources, but that doesn’t’ preclude involvement or cooperation with the FBI. If Lieberman is running the FBI, Trump has a pipeline to the Special Counsel’s investigation.
Even if we could ignore that big conflict of interest in the room that’s inevitable if one of the President’s lawyers were to run the FBI, Lieberman is sorely lacking the background and experience needed to do the job.
Lieberman’s bio on Kasowitz Benson Torres & Friedman website lists his qualifications to represent clients. What’s interesting is what the bio doesn’t say. Lieberman doesn’t have any notable experience as a criminal attorney listed in his bio, nor does the bio mention experience running an organization.
One can look to his experience as the Attorney-General of Connecticut, which is far from the sort of background in criminal law one would need to run the FBI.
Lieberman’s ties to Trump via Kasowitz et al, along with his lack of sufficient background in criminal law and running an organization suit Trump, as we see with so many other people he chose to be part of the Trump Administration. However, it is bad for America. We already have an incompetent and corrupt Administration, which is why we’re in this mess.
Image: CNN, screengrab