Third Member Being Kicked Off the Mueller Investigation Team?
Fox News host Laura Ingraham reported that Jeannie Rhee, one of Robert Mueller’s team members in the special counsel investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections, previously worked for the Democratic Party.
Jeannie Rhee did, in fact, represent National Security advisor Ben Rhodes under President Barack Obama. In addition, Rhee is a Hillary Clinton supporter, having donated to Clinton’s campaign and worked for the Clinton Foundation, which further validates her support for the Democratic Party.
Ingraham’s report is a big deal because it reflects that the special investigation team has members that are pro-Democrat. In addition, this news could result in Rhee leaving the team since there have been two former members that left the team for being Democrat supporters.
Let’s take a more in-depth look at Jeannie Rhee’s past, what this means for the special investigation team, and why being pro-Democrat matters.
Who Is Jeannie Rhee?
Jeannie Rhee completed her bachelor’s degree from Yale University in 1994. Then she went on to complete her Juris Doctor from Yale Law School in 1997. Rhee ended up using her law degree to practice law once her studies were completed. This included working as an Assistant US Attorney for the United States Attorney’s Office for The District of Columbia, and for the Department of Justice. (Source: “Jeannie Rhee,” Bloomberg, last accessed December 12, 2017.)
After working in the public segment of the law field, Rhee became a partner at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr. This law firms just happens to be the same law firm at which Robert Mueller himself was once a partner.
Rhee’s specialty is in cybersecurity and investigating data breach events. She has a vast amount of experience in conducting federal grand jury investigations, mail and wire fraud, money laundering, bribery, and conspiracy. This is why she was asked to join the special investigation team regarding Russian interference in the 2016 elections.
Why Jeannie Rhee May Be Leaving the Mueller Investigation Team
Even though Rhee has a lot of experience in bribery and conspiracy cases, she may end up leaving the special investigation team unwillingly. This is not as a result of something she did while on the team, but rather what she did in her past.
Rhee represented Ben Rhodes, who was President Obama’s Deputy National Security Advisor and was being investigated for the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attacks. (Source: “Special Counsel Member Jeannie Rhee Once Represented Obama Aide Ben Rhodes,” Breitbart, December 6, 2017.)
There is nothing wrong with taking on a case and representing a political client. The issue is that Rhee was supporting the Democratic Party and Mueller’s investigation team involves members and supporters of the Republican Party. This creates a bias from her point of view when making major decisions in regards to the 2016 interference case.
Also, Rhee is a Clinton supporter because she opened up her wallet and contributed to Clinton’s campaign. In April of 2015, Rhee wrote a check for $2,700, given to Hillary Clinton’s campaign. This was then followed by a second check written for $2,700 in August of 2016. Rhee has also represented the Clinton Foundation in their legal matters in the past. (Source: “Donor Lookup,” OpenSecrets.org, last accessed December 8, 2017.)
Being pro-Hillary Clinton is much more concerning than being a Democratic supporter. The reason why, in this case, is because Hillary Clinton is the one that lost out to Donald Trump in the presidential race (Rhee wanted her to win). It shows that there could be a bias in Rhee’s opinion as a result of not seeing Clinton in office.
Why Being Pro-Democratic Matters
Typically, it does not matter which party an individual supports. However, in this situation, it is concerning because the entire investigation involves Republican members and supporters.
Also, it could result in Rhee uncovering information that puts the Democratic Party in a negative light and keeping it confidential. Or there could be charges laid against a Democratic representative that may never be seen.
The No. 1 reason for all this being an issue is because the investigation should be fair and all information should be used regardless of which party it involves. Since Rhee had a previous bias towards the Democratic Party, it creates a real issue for her being part of the special investigation team under Mueller.
Will Rhee Leave the Mueller Team?
Robert Mueller has already had to remove one of his members from his special investigation team. It was found in an internal investigation that Peter Strzok was texting another member of the team messages that could be considered pro-Clinton and anti-Trump. The internal investigation resulted in Strzok leaving the special investigation team. The messages by Strzok were sent to Lisa Page, who was the second person to be let go by the Mueller team. (Source: “FBI agent removed from Mueller investigation over anti-Trump messages,” CNN, December 4, 2017.)
Since two members of the Mueller team have seen the door for seemingly being pro-Clinton, there is a high possibility that Rhee is the third person to leave the team.
Why Would Laura Ingraham Bring This Information Up?
Laura Ingraham works for a media network and wants as much news—and as many viewers—as possible. Since she works for Fox, the goal is to always to put President Trump and the Republican Party in a positive light.
If Rhee is the third member to leave the team, it will give less credibility to Mueller and his special investigation team. Also, if the Mueller team uncovers anything, it will appear that the team is simply going after the Republican Party since the Democrats lost the election.
Therefore, no matter what charges are laid in the investigation, the Republican Party will take it as a personal attack since there has been wrongdoing within the team itself.
Conclusion: Rhee Worked for the Democrats
Yes, Jeannie Rhee worked as a lawyer for a top Obama advisor and the Clinton Foundation, which was reported by Laura Ingraham. Rhee has also supported Clinton by giving her thousands of dollars. Based on the fact check, everything that Ingraham reported was true.
Now, the next piece of news that may come from the Mueller special investigation team is that Rhee is no longer part of the team. Of course, there would have to be an internal investigation before anything is set in stone. Currently, everyone is in wait-and-see mode from the outside looking in.