TEL AVIV (Reuters) - Donald Trump’s attorney, Rudy Giuliani, on Wednesday said U.S. special counsel Robert Mueller’s office was trying to frame the president in its investigation of Russia’s role in the 2016 U.S. election.
“They are a group of 13 highly partisan Democrats that make up the Mueller team, excluding him, (who) are trying very, very hard to frame him, to get him in trouble, when he hasn’t done anything wrong,” Giuliani said at a question-and-answer session at the Globes capital markets conference in Tel Aviv.
In fact, there are 17 staff members in Mueller’s special prosecutor’s office. Thirteen are registered Democrats; four are either unaffiliated or their affiliation is unknown, according to the Washington Post. Mueller himself is a registered Republican, as is Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general who appointed him.
Mueller is investigating whether Russia meddled in the 2016 election and whether Trump’s campaign colluded with Moscow. Criminal charges have been brought against Trump campaign aides, including former campaign chairman Paul Manafort. He is also looking into whether Trump tried to obstruct the investigation.
Both Russia and Trump deny collusion, and the president has denied obstruction. Mueller’s office has a policy of not commenting on its work.
“They can’t emotionally come to grips with the fact that this whole thing of Russian collusion didn’t happen, (and) they are trying to invent theories of obstruction of justice,” said Giuliani, a former New York mayor, referring to Mueller’s team.
On Sunday, Giuliani told the U.S. television network ABC it is an “open question” whether Trump would sit for an interview with Mueller, but the president’s lawyers were leaning against having him testify.
Reporting by Dan Williams and Jeffrey Heller, writing by Jeffrey Heller, editing by Larry King