Does Robert Mueller have a secret sex life? A Republican activist named Jack Burkman, who previously touted the conspiracy theory that Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich was assassinated by members of the Deep State, has apparently been investigating the past life of Trump’s chief investigator. His aim was to ferret out misdeeds by the G-man whose true interest was supposed to be the G-spot. The amateurish plot against Mueller fizzled out fairly quickly, but it has caught the interest of the FBI.
It seems to have centred on a former female paralegal who knew Mueller at the Pillsbury, Madison and Sutro law firm in 1974, though not very well, by her own accounting. A Burkman associate called to offer her $20,000 in return for agreeing to sign a statement alleging that Mueller had engaged in sexual misconduct. The paralegal apparently declined this effort at collusion. Once Mueller got wind of the scheme, however, he quickly alerted the FBI. According to the Atlantic, ‘In an emailed statement, Burkman denied knowing the woman who originally alerted journalists to the alleged scheme and called the FBI referral “a joke, mueller wants to deflect attention from his sex assault troubles by attacking me.” He added in a separate email that “on Thursday 1200 NOON ROSSYLN HOLIDAY INN we will present a very credible witness who will allege that Mr. Mueller committed against her a sexual assault.” Mueller’s spokesman reiterated that the claims are false.’
‘This isn’t something I take any delight in,’ Burkman stated on Facebook. ‘It’s something I wish I didn’t have to do.’ A right-wing Twitter personality named Jacob Wohl has also been pushing the storyline. He tweeted today, ‘I’ve counted more than 25 news outlets who have reported allegations against me, claiming that I offered to pay women to make accusations against Mueller I’ve looked into this “Lorraine Parsons”! Looks like she doesnt even exist! IT’S A FAKE NEWS CON JOB!’
So far, Trump hasn’t weighed in on the affair, but he’s been preoccupied with other matters, ranging from claiming that he will strip ‘birthright citizenship’ from babies and toddlers to travelling to Pittsburgh to mourn the deaths of worshippers at the Tree of Life synagogue. Much as after his Access Hollywood tape, Trump is being shunned by Republican pooh-bahs, at least right now. Not only Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer declined to accompany him to Pittsburgh, but also Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan, both of whom claimed that they had scheduling conflicts. Nor did anyone in Pennsylvania want to appear publicly with the president. The journalist Howard Fineman wrote on Twitter, ‘Just checked with sources in #Pittsburgh: the mayor, county executive and governor will NOT accompany or meet with @realDonaldTrump as he and Melania visit the city as families bury their dead after the #TreeofLife massacre. The WH tried to force officials hand with false leaks.’
Ryan also repudiated Trump’s claim to Axios that he can issue an ukase to void the 14th Amendment. He observed, ‘Well you obviously cannot do that. You cannot end birthright citizenship with an executive order.’ At the same time, Rep. Steve Stivers, the head of the National Republican Congressional Committee condemned Rep. Steve King for playing footsie with white nationalists: ‘Congressman Steve King’s recent comments, actions, and retweets are completely inappropriate. We must stand up against white supremacy and hate in all forms, and I strongly condemn this behaviour.’ For his part, King denounced Stivers as something of a weenie, delivering the ultimate Trumpist epithet. He called him an ‘establishment NeverTrump’ Republican.
My, my, my. As the GOP faces the midterms and the probable loss of the House, the latent divisions that have been papered over by Trump’s recent victories — most notably, installing Brett Kavanaugh onto the Supreme Court — are starting to reemerge. Trump’s toxicity is corroding his own party’s political fortunes. Now that Democrats have regained momentum in the final week before the midterms, Trump’s bombast may be the best thing they have going for them.