KIM JONG-UN: We should talk.
~12 hours later~
MUELLER: We should talk.
TRUMP: (prints out 10-page single-spaced list of demands & conditions)
— Zeddy (@Zeddary) March 9, 2018
Trump’s legal team may tell Mueller he can interview the president if, among other considerations, he agrees to be very, very nice.
— Schooley (@Rschooley) March 10, 2018
The mockery is universal! Jon Chait, in NYMag:
President Trump’s lawyers have long insisted that, despite his public promise to testify to Robert Mueller, their client should not do so because he is a compulsive liar (e.g., the New York Times one month ago: “His lawyers are concerned that the president, who has a history of making false statements and contradicting himself, could be charged with lying to investigators.”). His unstoppable lying is akin to a handicap.…
Perhaps reconsidering the merits of this defense, Trump’s legal brain trust is floating two new rationales for why he cannot submit to an open interview. “It would be a travesty to waste his (Mr. Trump’s) time and to set a precedent which would cripple a future president,” a Trump lawyer tells The Wall Street Journal.
Everybody surely appreciates Trump’s previously undetectable concern for the long-term well-being of the institution he has been trashing. But the second objection, the one about wasting time, seems fairly easy to respond to. While Trump may be terribly busy with his regimen of document study, he also spends four to eight hours per day watching television…
Trump's lawyers may tell Mueller that Trump will agree to an interview if Mueller sets a date for wrapping up the investigation and limits the scope of his questioning, WSJ reports https://t.co/wpAJpr9FuR
— Mark Berman (@markberman) March 9, 2018
…The president’s legal team is considering telling Mr. Mueller that Mr. Trump would agree to a sit-down interview based on multiple considerations, including that the special counsel commit to a date for concluding at least the Trump-related portion of the investigation. One idea is to suggest a deadline of 60 days from the date of the interview, the person said.
Another consideration for the legal team is reaching an agreement with Mr. Mueller on the scope of his questioning of the president, which they expect to focus largely on his decision to fire former national security adviser Mike Flynn and former FBI director James Comey, according to people familiar with the matter…
The president’s legal team is under pressure from Mr. Trump to bring about an end to the probe. Mr. Trump has been eager to see the investigation wrap up as quickly as possible, describing it as a distraction that is hurting the country. His lawyers have repeatedly laid out public timelines by which they expected the investigation to end. Those deadlines have come and gone…
Lawyers for Mr. Trump hold different views on whether he should testify and under what conditions. One member of the Trump legal team said last month that Mr. Trump’s testimony could set a bad precedent for future presidents, eroding their powers.
If Mr. Trump were to face detailed questions involving dates and times, his legal team may be reluctant to have him participate. As an example, general questions about what the president was thinking when he ordered the firing of Mr. Comey might be acceptable, as opposed to what action he took on a specific date and time.
Lawyers for Mr. Trump have studied federal court rulings that could be the basis for delaying or limiting the scope of an interview, or perhaps avoiding one altogether.
Sounds to me like (yet more) kabuki to placate Trump and his more vocal idiot supporters. As the old parable ends, In a year’s time, who knows? I might die; the king might die — or the horse could talk!