Republican strategist and former Trump administration advisor Steve Bannon is no stranger to the White House, President Trump, or the ongoing Russian probe. During his time serving in the administration, Bannon undoubtedly bumped shoulders with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigators.
As Washington Examiner reports, Bannon predicts that Mueller may soon suspend his probe due to disparaging findings from the recently released Inspector General report:
In an interview with the National Interest published Monday, the former Breitbart News executive chairman claimed that recent developments concerning government misconduct — such as those involving FBI agents Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and “that whole crowd” — have jeopardized the “underpinnings of the whole Russia investigation.”
“That’s going to put the whole Mueller thing on hold,” Bannon said, per the report. “For right now… I think you’re going to see in the coming week, you’re going to see a number of very sophisticated — and these are not Trump supporters — lawyers in town, in Washington, writing analysis… They have to fully vet the underpinnings of the entire Mueller investigation.”
“This shows you there’s been obstruction already,” Bannon added. “The IG report is one small sliver.”
Strzok, who worked on the Russian investigation, was shown to have a tremendous bias in the IG report and expressed several times that he did not want Trump to win the presidency. In one message, Strzok told Page that Trump wouldn’t win because the FBI would act to “stop it.”
It was revealed last year that Strzok and Page had an affair and exchanged text messages critical of Trump. Strzok was removed from the Mueller investigation upon the discovery of the texts, and Page resigned from her post last month.
Newly revealed insight into their text messages from the Justice Department inspector general report on the FBI’s management of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server shows that Page expressed concerns that Trump would be elected president. In response, Strzok sought to assuage her fears, saying, “We’ll stop it.”
Last week, Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani called on the Justice Department to suspend the investigation within 24 hours. Although he later said he was joking, Guiliani said he is no “sucker” and wants the investigation shut down sooner rather than later.
“I didn’t think it would,” Giuliani said when asked about his empty demand the investigation be suspended, as Politico reports. “But I still think it should be.”
“That’s what I’m supposed to do,” Giuliani added. “What am I supposed to say? That they should investigate him forever? Sorry, I’m not a sucker.”
Guiliani then hit right at the heart of the Mueller investigation and the credibility-hit the FBI has taken over the last few months.
“They should end it,” the attorney added, as the Hill reports. “I mean, the IG report basically tells you that both prongs of the Mueller investigation are either corrupt or answered.”
“This report is a complete and absolute explanation of why Comey had to be fired, so how could it be obstruction of justice?”
Here’s more from Politico:
Giuliani’s demand for the Mueller investigation to be terminated came on Thursday night in response to a report the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General that criticized former FBI Director James Comey’s decisions overseeing the Hillary Clinton email investigation. Appearing on Fox News with Sean Hannity, Giuliani said Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein should “redeem themselves” the next day by shutting down the Mueller inquiry.
Mueller has not shown any indication he plans on suspending or otherwise ending his investigation and the Justice Department has already allocated funding for it through the end of the 2019 fiscal year.