"I am with Mueller. He shares my views. Duty Calls. Sometimes the moment chooses us." -Rod Rosenstein, one day before Mueller was appointed as special counsel
New emails obtained through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit reveal the details surrounding communications between Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Robert Mueller in the days leading up to the former FBI Director's appointment as special counsel in the Russia probe. Mueller would go on to assemble a team comprising "13 Angry Democrats" as Trump called them, due to their obvious animus towards the president.
According to the 145 pages of documents obtained by Judicial Watch, Rosenstein and Mueller were discussing just three days after President Trump fired former FBI Director James Comey, and ostenisbly for some time before that.
"The boss and his staff do not know about our discussions," Rosenstein wrote Mueller on May 12, 2017 as the two tried to nail down a time for their next conversation.
Four days later on May 16- the day before Mueller's appointment, Rosenstein told former Bush administration Deputy Attorney General and current Kirkland & Ellis Partne, Mark Filip "I am with Mueller. He shares my views. Duty Calls. Sometimes the moment chooses us."
And on May 17 Rosenstein appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to investigate Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
Also, during the same time period, between May 8 and May 17, Rosenstein met with then-acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe and other senior Justice Department FBI officials to discuss wearing a wire and invoking the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump. -Judicial Watch
Meanwhile, Rosenstein was in contact with 60 Minutes, The New York Times and the Washington Post during the same time period.
"In an email exchange dated May 2017, Rosenstein communicated with New York Times reporter Rebecca Ruiz to provide background for this article about himself. Ruiz emailed Rosenstein a draft of the article, and he responded with off-the-record comments and clarifications," according to Judicial Watch.
- In an email exchange on May 17, 2017, the day of Mueller’s appointment, Rosenstein exchanged emails with 60 Minutes producer Katherine Davis in which he answered off-the-record questions about Mueller’s scope of authority and chain of command:
Rosenstein: “Off the record: This special counsel is a DOJ employee. His status is similar to a US Attorney.”
Davis: “Good call on Mueller. Although I obviously thought you’d be great at leading the investigation too.”
- On May 17, 2017, in an email exchange with Washington Post journalist Sari Horwitz and the subject line “Special Counsel” Rosenstein and Horwitz exchanged:
Rosenstein: “At some point, I owe you a long story. But this is not the right time for me to talk to anybody.”
Horwitz: “Now, I see why you couldn’t talk today! Obviously, we’re writing a big story about this. Is there any chance I could talk to you on background about your decision?” -JW
"These astonishing emails further confirm the corruption behind Rosenstein’s appointment of Robert Mueller," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. "The emails also show a shockingly cozy relationship between Mr. Rosenstein and anti-Trump media reporters."