The Trump Investigation

The investigation of the Trump-Russia probe isn’t going well.

The Background

In September 2016, lawyer Michael Sussmann met with his friend James Baker, who also happened to be special counsel for the FBI. He gave Baker a tip that led to an investigation into ties between the Trump Organization and Kremlin-linked Alfa Bank. That investigation turned up nothing.

The Case

Three years ago, former President Trump appointed Special Counsel John Durham to probe the probe into Trump/Russia ties. After years of investigation, Durham had his first courtroom test when he brought Sussmann to trial for lying to the FBI over that tip. Why would he do that? Sussmann was Hillary Clinton’s campaign lawyer, which allegedly gave him an “October surprise” motive.

The Verdict

The jury was not convinced, reaching a unanimous verdict of not guilty for Sussman on Tuesday.

What’s Next

This probe of the Trump/Russia Mueller investigation (which is now over) continues. Durham’s investigation has produced one conviction so far, with another set to go to trial in October. But Sussmann’s acquittal is a major blow, and many are wondering if this is a good use of time and resources.

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