Where the investigations related to President Donald Trump stand and what may lie ahead for him:
WHAT’S THIS ALL ABOUT?
Special counsel Robert Mueller is looking into whether the Trump campaign co-ordinated with Russia and whether the president obstructed the investigation. Trump also plays a central role in a separate case in New York, where prosecutors have implicated him in a crime. They say Trump directed his personal lawyer Michael Cohen to make illegal hush-money payments to two women as a way to quash potential sex scandals during the campaign. New York prosecutors also are looking into Trump’s inaugural fund.
Congressional investigations also are swirling around the president. Democrats have launched a sweeping probe of Trump, an aggressive investigation that threatens to shadow the president through the 2020 election season.
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WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW RIGHT NOW?
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has set a high bar for impeaching President Donald Trump, saying in an interview published Monday that Trump is “just not worth it” even as some on her left clamour to start proceedings.
In the interview with The Washington Post, Pelosi said, “I’m not for impeachment.”
“Unless there’s something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I don’t think we should go down that path, because it divides the country,” she said.
While she has made similar comments before, Pelosi made clear to her caucus and to voters that Democrats will not move forward quickly with trying to remove Trump from office.
Former acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker will meet behind closed doors with leaders of the House Judiciary Committee to clarify testimony he gave last month, according to a committee aide who requested anonymity to discuss the closed meeting.
Whitaker will meet Wednesday with House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and the committee’s top Republican, Georgia’s Doug Collins.
Nadler said after Whitaker’s public testimony in February that his answers were “unsatisfactory, incomplete or contradicted by other evidence.”
SO … DID THE TRUMP CAMPAIGN COLLUDE WITH RUSSIA?
There is no smoking gun when it comes to the question of Russia collusion. But the evidence so far shows that a broad range of Trump associates had Russia-related contacts during the 2016 presidential campaign and transition period, and several lied about the communications.
There is evidence that some people in Trump’s orbit were discussing a possible email dump from WikiLeaks before it occurred. American intelligence agencies and Mueller have said Russia was the source of hacked material released by the anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks during the campaign that was damaging to Democrat Hillary Clinton’s presidential effort.
OTHER QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER:
—WHAT ABOUT OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE? That is another unresolved question that Mueller is pursuing. Investigators have examined key episodes such as Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey and Trump’s fury over Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recusal.
—WHAT DOES TRUMP HAVE TO SAY ABOUT ALL THIS? Trump has repeatedly slammed the Mueller investigation as a “witch hunt” and insisted there was “NO COLLUSION” with Russia. He also says Cohen lied to get a lighter sentence in New York.
—WHEN WILL IT ALL WRAP UP? It’s unclear. Then-acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker said in January that the probe is “close to being completed,” the first official sign that Mueller’s investigation may be wrapping up. But he gave no specific timetable.
The Associated Press