It was recently announced by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigative team that President Trump was no longer the target of a criminal probe regarding alleged collusion in the 2016 presidential election.
Despite the announcement, which was cheered by President Trump, the likelihood of an interview remains.
As the Hill reports, the Trump team is in the preliminary stages in preparing for that interview, should it ever materialize.
“President Trump has reportedly begun preparing for a potential interview with special counsel Robert Mueller, after months of negotiations involving the president’s legal team,” the Hill reports.
A White House official said that Trump’s preparation is “in its infancy,” CNN reported Friday, as lawyers have only given Trump basic ideas of what topics the special counsel may ask about.
Trump has not formally agreed to be interviewed by Mueller in his investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia, but he has said he “would like to.”
While Trump has publicly remained open to sitting down with Mueller’s team, advisers have cautioned him about risks surrounding an interview with the special counsel.
Mueller has so far charged 19 people as part of his probe into Russia’s election meddling, including several former Trump associates who have been indicted for lying to the FBI.
It was reported earlier this month that Mueller told Trump’s lawyers that the president is not a criminal target of the Russia probe, but emphasized that he is still a subject of the investigation.
According to the report, lawyers representing Trump and Mueller’s investigative team met together last month to discuss potential questions which would be asked of Trump during the interview. Trump’s lawyers have previously tried to offer an interview with the President for closing conditions of Mueller’s investigation.
President Trump is not the only person hoping the end of the investigation is near, as Judicial Watch previously reported, the investigation is costing taxpayers nearing a million dollars per month: “The Justice Department also sent Judicial Watch a copy of a previously published document showing expenditures by the Special Counsel’s Office from May 17, 2017, to September 30, 2017. The total was $3,213,695, nearly a million dollars per month.”
As the Hill also reports, former Trump advisor Roger Stone has recently said he thinks it would be a mistake for the president to agree to an interview with Mueller.
During a CNN interview, Stone warned of a potential “perjury trap” for the president, saying Mueller could probe “some process-related crime that doesn’t relate to Russia.”
“I obviously believe the special counsel has a political bias, as demonstrated by the FBI text messages and emails that have surfaced and the political nature of this investigation, so I think it is very dangerous for the president to do so,” Stone said.
His advice to Trump came just hours after a CNN report that Trump was in the preliminary stages of preparing for a possible interview with Mueller later this year.
The president has not formally agreed to sit down with the special counsel, but has said in the past that he “would like to.” His former attorney, John Dowd, resigned last month after advising Trump against such a move.