Robert Mueller not only looks like he should morally recuse himself from the special counsel investigation, but he’s also legally disqualified from the special counsel with his close personal and professional friendship with fired and disgraced former FBI-director James Comey.
Comey and Mueller’s close relationship legally and morally disqualifies Mueller from the investigation.
28 USC Section 528 requires the disqualification of any ‘investigation or prosecution if such participation may result in a personal, financial, or political conflict of interest, or the appearance thereof. Such rules and regulations may provide that a willful violation of any provision thereof shall result in removal from office.’
28 CFR Section 45.2 provides in part that people are disqualified if they have personal relationship with ‘Any person or organization substantially involved in the conduct that is the subject of the investigation or prosecution.’
Clearly, both of these ethics rules apply to the Mueller-Comey relationship.
The Attorney General shall promulgate rules and regulations which require the disqualification of any officer or employee of the Department of Justice, including a United States attorney or a member of such attorney’s staff, from participation in a particular investigation or prosecution if such participation may result in a personal, financial, or political conflict of interest, or the appearance thereof. Such rules and regulations may provide that a willful violation of any provision thereof shall result in removal from office.
Disqualification arising from personal or political relationship.
(a) Unless authorized under paragraph (b) of this section, no employee shall participate in a criminal investigation or prosecution if he has a personal or political relationship with:
(1) Any person or organization substantially involved in the conduct that is the subject of the investigation or prosecution; or
(2) Any person or organization which he knows has a specific and substantial interest that would be directly affected by the outcome of the investigation or prosecution …
(c) For the purposes of this section:
(2) Personal relationship means a close and substantial connection of the type normally viewed as likely to induce partiality. … Whether relationships (including friendships) of an employee to other persons (outside his or her family) or organizations are “personal” must be judged on an individual basis with due regard given to the subjective opinion of the employee.
FOX News legal expert Gregg Jarrett suggested that Robert Mueller should disqualify himself from special counsel due to his relationship with James Comey.
Jarrett said, “If you look at the special counsel statute it says you cannot serve as special counsel if you have a personal relationship with someone who is central to the case. If this Washington Post story is true, it’s now Trump against Comey. Comey is now the star witness, the key witness against Trump. Well, guess what? Comey and Mueller are longtime close personal friends, partners, allies. They were joined at the hip at the DOJ and FBI. It’s a mentor-protege relationship. How is this fair to Donald Trump because Mueller is now going to decide whether to believe his good friend or the man who fired his good friend…”