Donald Trump, his children, and his inner circle appear to be very confident that they will not be implicated in the report which may soon be issued by special counsel Robert Mueller.
However, according to a report published this morning by POLITICO, some of them might already have been indicted and don’t even know about it yet. And these indictments might include Jared Kushner, Steve Bannon and Hope Hicks as well as members of Trump’s immediate family.
The president’s eldest two children, Ivanka and Donald Jr., have appeared almost cocky recently as they have publicly stated that they are not at all concerned about Mueller’s findings. They seem almost oblivious to the many federal, state and local investigations into the Trump Organization and the Trump Foundation, of which they have been board members for many years. There are also serious investigations into their father’s campaign and inauguration committee that are extraneous to the Mueller probe.
There reportedly are charges being prepared by state and local prosecutors which could not be eliminated through a presidential pardon. In addition, there are many sealed indictments which have already been filed in Washington, D.C. These could easily involve Trump’s children as well as other individuals in the president’s inner circle.
“If anyone in Trump world is breathing easy right now, I’d say they are very foolish,” said Shanlon Wu, a defense lawyer who represented former Trump deputy campaign chairman Rick Gates, who cut a plea deal and is cooperating with Mueller.
“Even if Mueller’s report were to appear and didn’t implicate the president,” Wu added, “all these other criminal investigations will continue. That’s not going to be the magic bullet that solves everything. I’d be very concerned if I was a lawyer or a potential target in that world right now.”
Insiders at the White House have said that they are worried that some of the president’s inner circle might be indicted for lying in front of congressional committees. This is one of the criminal charges against longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone, and it may send him to prison.
“These guys took the whole Congress thing way too lightly,” said a Republican official who is in contact with Trump aides in the White House. “They didn’t understand that members actually listen, take notes and record this sh*t. I think they all took it way too nonchalantly and didn’t think it matters — and boy, does it.”
The House Intelligence Committee, which has interviewed many Trump confidants, recently voted to send to Mueller the transcripts of sworn testimony of more than 50 committee witnesses.
A former Trump campaign adviser, Michael Caputo, who’s been questioned by both Mueller and congressional committees is of the opinion that anyone connected to the president should be worried. He said:
“I think everyone will be happy when the Mueller investigation concludes, but the Democrats in the House and Senate aren’t going to give us a pause anytime soon. We’ve all strapped in and I wouldn’t advise anyone to unbuckle.”
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.