Adam Schiff calls Trump ‘angry man down the street’
WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump made it clear Wednesday morning that he was not pleased to hear that former special counsel Robert Mueller would be joined by his former deputy Aaron Zebley when he testified at two House committee hearings later that day.
“It was NEVER agreed that Robert Mueller could use one of his many Democrat Never Trumper lawyers to sit next to him and help him with his answers,” Trump tweeted. “This was specifically NOT agreed to, and I would NEVER have agreed to it. The Greatest Witch Hunt in U.S. history, by far!”
At the opening of Mueller’s appearance before the House Intelligence Committee, the ranking Republican on the committee, Rep, Devin Nunes of California said it was “highly unusual” for Zebley to be sworn in alongside Mueller.
Nunes said the point of the hearing was to question Mueller, not Zebley, and that Republicans on the committee “had concerns about his prior representation of the Hillary Clinton campaign aide.”
Zebley was a former federal prosecutor who worked with Mueller in private practice before joining the special counsel’s team in 2017. According to The Washington Post, during his stint in the private sector, Zebley represented Justin Cooper – who had worked as an aide to former President Bill Clinton and who helped set up the private email server Hillary Clinton used during her tenure as secretary of state,
That connection had also concerned Trump who said Zebley “represented the ‘basement server guy’ who got off free in the Crooked Hillary case.”
House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., indicated that he thought Nunes’ concerns were meant to appease the president.
“I realize, as you probably do Mr. Zebley, that there is an angry man down the street who is not happy about your being here today,” Schiff said, “But it is up to this committee and not anyone else, who will be allowed to be sworn in and testify. And you are welcome as a private citizen to testify and members may direct their questions to whoever they choose.”