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Rudy Giuliani is on the Case and Already Blowing It


Rudy Giuliani will join President Donald Trump‘s constantly expanding and retracting legal team.

New York City’s much-loathed former mayor confirmed the inauspicious hiring decision to The Washington Post‘s Robert Costa and Josh Dawsey late afternoon Thursday.

As noted by Mediaite‘s Tamar Auber, “[T]he resignation of John Dowd and the legal woes of Michael Cohen have left a hole in Trump’s personal lawyer team that few seem willing to fill.”

Cue the man New York Post writers neared climax over every time they referred to him as “Hizzoner.”

Giuliani said, “I’m doing it because I hope we can negotiate an end to this for the good of the country and because I have high regard for the president and for Bob Mueller.”

The initial announcement was quickly followed by a press blitz performed on the usual networks.

In comments to CNN’s Dana Bash, Giuliani said his role was “limited” and reiterated the idea that he was somehow hired to put the kibosh on Robert Mueller‘s Russiagate investigation and soon, saying it “needs a little push.”

How so? Giuliani noted his personal relationship with Mueller and said he hoped it would provide a quick resolution to the Damocletian investigation hanging over the entirety of the Trump presidency. When pressed by Bash for a timeline, Giuliani said, “Maybe a couple weeks.”

Except that’s not how federal investigations work–and certainly not this federal investigation. Mueller’s mandate here is exceptionally broad and the special counsel himself has given very little indication as to the overall investigation’s progress or potential length.

Every once in awhile the media has been prone to speculate–is Mueller moving too slow and intentionally dragging things out? Maybe he’s going a little too fast? Perhaps the investigation (and Trump’s presidency) is nearing its final stages? What if it’s just getting started? All rampant speculation. But reckless and irresponsible legacy media will media.

In any event, in the first few moments as an identified member of Trump’s legal team, Giuliani has advanced the following ideas: (1) that he was hired specifically to pump Mueller’s brakes; (2) that his personal relationship will Mueller should get the job done; and (3) where others have failed, Giuliani can succeed in a mere matter of weeks. Sigh.

First of all, federal investigations are not typically concluded by way of negotiations–maybe that’s how Giuliani operated in the ’80s when he was the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, but it’s almost certainly not the case here–and the idea that Giuliani could sit down with Mueller to bring the ongoing Russiagate drama to a close strains credulity.

Additionally, the idea that Giuliani’s personal relationship with Mueller can be exploited to put an end to Mueller’s investigation into President Trump is an interesting argument. But it’s absolutely not legal. In fact, it’s probably not an argument that Giuliani should–or will–actually make.

To be clear: personal relationships between prosecutors and defense attorneys often exert an outsized influence on the (mis)carriage of justice in this country–that’s a sad fact about our legal system. But it’s ridiculous for Giuilani to hang his hat on here. And if this argument is advanced, Mueller isn’t likely to respond favorably at all.

Finally, the idea that Giuliani can wrap this up in any brief or predictable amount of time only bears comment because of its obvious incongruity with reality.

Giuliani earlier previewed the sort of legal expertise he would bring to Team Trump. Asked to comment on the FBI’s raid of Michael Cohen’s offices, Giuliani said:

Is this surprising? Yes. Is it extraordinary? No. This is the way prosecutors get information — sometimes to convict and prosecute, sometimes to exculpate.

Look for more of the same incisive reasoning to follow.

[Photo via Drew Angerer/Getty Images]

Follow Colin Kalmbacher on Twitter: @colinkalmbacher

This is an opinion piece. The views expressed in this article are those of just the author.

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