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Republicans Prepare to Badger Mueller at First Public Hearing

Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

With Robert Mueller’s public testimony to two House committees nearly two weeks away, President Trump’s most loyal allies in Congress are gearing up for a dramatic confrontation with the former special counsel. While Democrats just want Mueller to keep talking about Trump’s relationship with Russia and the evidence that he obstructed justice, Republicans are aiming to puncture his “reputation and cast doubt on the integrity of his work,” according to a new report in Politico.

Republicans preparing over the next two-plus weeks to question Mueller say they have their own points they hope to drive home to Americans as well. Several indicated they intend to press Mueller on when he first determined he lacked evidence to charge Americans with conspiring with Russia — insinuating, without evidence, that he allowed suspicions to linger long after he had shifted his focus to the obstruction of justice investigation.

They’re also planning to press Mueller on alleged bias within the FBI, and the text messages exchanged between former FBI agent Peter Strzok and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page.

Last week on Fox News, Congressman Matt Gaetz, a member of the House Judiciary Committee​ and one of Congress’s most sycophantic Trump supporters, previewed his line of questioning.

“The Mueller team was an HR Chernobyl,” Gaetz said before calling out Strzok and Page by name. “We have legitimate questions about how all these people ended up on the Mueller team that had a history of donating financially to Democrats.”

Trump’s allies outside of Congress also have a lot of ideas for what Republicans should ask Mueller. The Federalist’s Margot Cleveland wrote nearly 6,000 words on the subject, The Daily Caller laid out “27 Questions That Congress Should Ask Mueller,” and Diamond and Silk highlighted one they want asked: “When did you know that the Russia Witch Hunt was a Hoax and why did you continue to waste our tax dollars after knowing?”

But not all of the questions will be so substantive. If a recent comment to Politico is any indication, Congressman Louie Gohmert might get personal. “He’s done some irreparable damage to some things, and he’s got to answer for them,” Gohmert said of Mueller, adding that he didn’t think much of Mueller’s 400-page report. “It reinforced the anal opening that I believe Mueller to be.”

Republicans Prepare to Badger Mueller at Public Hearing