The full story of Robert Mueller’s special counsel investigation of the Russian collusion myth has yet to be told, but important pieces of the tale are emerging. It is increasingly clear that Mueller exerted little to no control over what was going on. The narrative-driven image of Mueller as the steely-eyed force of justice who would take Trump down collapsed when the investigation found no Trump ties to Russia, and Mueller emerged publicly as a low energy, sometimes confused shadow of his former self. Instead, Mueller’s underlings ran the show, dragging out the pointless investigation even when they knew it was a dry hole, illicitly hobbling the Trump presidency while making sure they covered their tracks.
Last week, responding to a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, the Justice Department released heavily redacted documents showing that several dozen phones belonging to members of Mueller’s team were wiped or disabled before they could be examined by Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz during his office’s review of the special counsel’s investigation. In each case, the phones were somehow accidentally rendered useless. Two were “in airplane mode, no passcode provided, data unable to be recovered so had to be wiped.” Disgraced