FreedomWatch sues to remove Mueller

A conservative group filed suit on Monday seeking to remove special counsel Robert Mueller from the Justice Department’s investigation into Russian meddling.

Conservative lawyer Larry Klayman, the founder of the watchdog group FreedomWatch, filed a complaint in U.S. district court that seeks to force the Justice Department to investigate leaks from the special counsel, as well as “the obvious conflicts of interest among staff.”

The complaint against Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsRoy Moore sues Alabama over COVID-19 restrictions GOP set to release controversial Biden report Trump's policies on refugees are as simple as ABCs MORE and FBI director Christopher Wray states that “it is a criminal offense to leak grand jury information” and seeks Mueller’s removal.

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“Robert Mueller is not a ‘man of integrity’ as the Washington, D.C., Democrat and Republican political establishment like to spin,” Klayman said in a statement. “He is just another pol who is representing his establishment benefactors in both political parties who want to see the presidency of Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSteele Dossier sub-source was subject of FBI counterintelligence probe Pelosi slams Trump executive order on pre-existing conditions: It 'isn't worth the paper it's signed on' Trump 'no longer angry' at Romney because of Supreme Court stance MORE destroyed.”

There is deep anger at Mueller on the right and growing calls for him to recuse himself from the special counsel investigation into whether Trump campaign officials had improper contacts with Moscow during the 2016 election.

Klayman is hanging his legal effort on the notion that Mueller is too close to former FBI director James Comey and allegations that his team has leaked damaging stories about those he’s investigating to the press. The complaint also argues that Mueller has politicized the probe by hiring Democrats for his investigative team.

Conservatives have also argued that Mueller’s probe has extended beyond his mandate of investigating Russian meddling. 

More recently, conservative media and others on the right have drawn attention to Mueller’s time as FBI director, questioning why he didn’t alert regulators that a subsidiary of a foreign uranium mining company was under investigation before a controversial deal for the sale of the company to a Russia-owned firm was approved.

“He must be held accountable to the law and should not be able to do as he pleases to further his and his friends, like former FBI Director James Comey's, political agenda,” Klayman said. “We are hopeful that the court will order Justice to do its job and conduct an expeditious and impartial investigation and then order Mueller to step down as special counsel. There are others, perhaps who practice outside of the Washington, D.C., swamp, who could step in and do an honest and conflict-free investigation of so-called Russian collusion.”

The special counsel has indicted Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort for a litany of financial crimes. A low-level policy adviser, George Papadopoulos, has pleaded guilty to lying to investigators about his contacts with Russians.

Many others in Trump's inner circle have met with the special counsel or are expected to do so soon.

Mueller has a sterling reputation in law enforcement circles and continues to have the support of GOP leaders on Capitol Hill.

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanKenosha will be a good bellwether in 2020 At indoor rally, Pence says election runs through Wisconsin Juan Williams: Breaking down the debates MORE (R-Wis.) has noted that Mueller was appointed by a Republican and has said that nobody in Washington views him as a “biased partisan.” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump 'no longer angry' at Romney because of Supreme Court stance On The Money: Anxious Democrats push for vote on COVID-19 aid | Pelosi, Mnuchin ready to restart talks | Weekly jobless claims increase | Senate treads close to shutdown deadline The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump faces backlash after not committing to peaceful transition of power MORE (R-Ky.) has urged lawmakers to give Mueller time and space to see the investigation through to the end.