White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders is being accused of obstructing justice for publicly disparaging former FBI Director James Comey.
During an appearance last night on MSNBC‘s Hardball with Chris Matthews, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) argued that Sanders may have placed herself in legal jeopardy by suggesting that the Department of Justice “look at” any possible crimes Comey may have committed when he provided the New York Times with his infamous memo.
Sanders’ aspersions cast Comey as somewhat of an erratic and rampant lawbreaker whose words cannot be trusted.
As the show’s host nodded along, Whitehouse outlined a somewhat elaborate scenario where Sanders’ comments take the form of attempted smear campaign meant to impugn a witness in a purported criminal investigation. The senator said:
The three torpedoes that Sarah Huckabee’s Sanders shot at James Comey, which open up an entirely new avenue in the case for Mueller. There’s a statute, 1504 in the obstruction of justice statutes, that talks about attempts to influence grand jurors. So the question for Sarah Huckabee Sanders is, “Who asked you to do that? Who told you to do that?”
The Rhode Island Democrat continued, “And once you know who it is, you look to their motivation. And if their motivation was to poison the reputation of Jim Comey with grand jurors, you’ve got another count in the indictment.”
Special counsel Robert Mueller‘s massive legal team is currently investigating “any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation [into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.]”
Whitehouse made his comments immediately after it was revealed that Mueller may be seeking to indict former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort. It was unclear, however, which indictment–whether existing, potential or entirely fanciful–Senator Whitehouse was referencing when he made the accusations against Sanders.
[image via screengrab]