Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump‘s personal attorney, on Sunday dinged an investigation into Russian influence in the 2016 presidential election as illegitimate.
Asked in an interview with CNN’s “State of the Union” if he believed special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe was legitimate, Giuliani responded, “Not anymore.”
“I did when I came in, but now I see Spygate,” Giuliani told host Dana Bush, referencing a term used by Trump to described revelations that an informant made contact with his campaign as part of an FBI investigation into Russian meddling in the election. Trump has lambasted the Mueller and Justice Department, calling the ongoing investigation as an effort to undermine the validity of his election.
Saying there’s no evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia, Giuliani argued of Mueller that “the basis on which he was appointed is illegitimate.”
“I know 50 years of investigatory experience tells me they don’t have a darn thing because they would’ve used it already and they wouldn’t be off on collusion, they wouldn’t be off on Manafort, they wouldn’t be off on Cohen,” Giuliani, a former federal prosecutor and former mayor of New York City, argued.
“You’ve got a good case, man, you go right to it,” he said.
Giuliani also described Trump as “adamant” about conducting an interview with Mueller’s team.
“If he wasn’t thinking about it and it wasn’t an active possibility, we’d be finished with that and we’d have moved on to getting the investigation finished and over with,” Giuliani said. “He is adamant in wanting to do it….But we’re more convinced as we see it that this is a rigged investigation.”
He added that there are two likely topics of discussion in a potential interview between the commander in chief and the special counsel, collusion and obstruction of justice. Giuliani said he’s confident about the former topic, but less so about discussing the latter.
“The collusion part we’re pretty comfortable with because there has been none,” he said.
“The obstruction part I’m not as comfortable with. I’m not. The president’s fine with it. He’s innocent,” Giuliani said. The former New York mayor called obstruction of justice “a matter of interpretation,” particularly around the firing of FBI Director James Comey.
Giuliani also made it clear the president would not fire Mueller. “What we have to do is go to court and seek protection from the court,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.”