The Russian investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller has picked its next target in the search for proof that Russia intervened with the 2016 election — Steve Bannon. Bannon was subpoenaed last week and is expected to sit before a grand jury in the near future. Legal experts say Bannon’s subpoena is another shot at finding additional tangible evidence in the investigation.
According to the New York Times, who originally broke the news of Bannon’s subpoena, this will be the first time Mueller has used the grand jury to gain information in his team’s investigation.
Bannon, who was the former White House chief strategist before leaving his position in August of last year, was reportedly subpoenaed after his alleged quotes in Michael Wolff’s new tell-all book “Fire and Fury” were revealed. The book’s claims of a dysfunctional administration apparently caught Mueller’s attention.
In the book, Bannon was quoted as having said that Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with Russian lawyers in Trump Tower was “treasonous.”
The Hill has reported that having Bannon before a grand jury marks the first time one of Trump’s inner circle has been subpoenaed. Bannon spoke behind closed doors to the House Intelligence Committee Tuesday regarding President Trump and the administration’s possible ties to Russia during the presidential election.
Bannon has had a rough couple of weeks after he resigned from Breitbart. Trump threaten to sue him, and he lost the support of conservatives around the nation.
Trump continued to lambast Bannon publicly on Twitter, in which he referred to Bannon as “Sloppy Steve” and claimed he “cried when he got fired and begged for his job.”
The Times has put forth the notion that Mueller could finally delve into the inner workings of what happened during the election when former FBI Director James Comey was abruptly fired. The firing of Micheal Flynn could also be brought up before the grand jury.
No date for the grand jury interview has been set, but Meuller will surely expedite the process now that Bannon and Trump are on the outs.