And Right on Cue, Another Promise That Mueller Will Deliver Soon

But not before the midterms, of course! Heavens no. Don't be ridiculous.

Chris Strohm, Greg Farrell, and Shannon Pettypiece at Bloomberg report: "Special Counsel Robert Mueller is expected to issue findings on core aspects of his Russia probe soon after the November midterm elections as he faces intensifying pressure to produce more indictments or shut down his investigation, according to two U.S. officials. ...The question of timing is critical. Mueller's work won't be concluded ahead of the Nov. 6 midterm elections, when Democrats hope to take control of the House and end Trump's one-party hold on Washington."

But SOON! Keep hope alive! Et cetera!

Two things:

One. I wrote exactly one week ago:
I have repeatedly expressed my grave concerns for nearly a year now that the objective of Mueller's investigation is not to deliver meaningful accountability to a treasonous president and his accomplices, but instead to create the illusion that our institutions still work, long enough to give Republicans time to consolidate power behind this presidency, ensuring that the findings will never matter, anyway.

...There is no urgency in response to this crisis. Too much time has passed for defenses of his allegedly methodical approach to matter.

We're two years into Donald Trump's presidency and less than a month out from midterms, and the Republican Party has consolidated power behind Trump, including a staunchly conservative majority on the Supreme Court.

If Mueller's investigation wasn't explicitly designed to keep us complacent and trusting that our democratic institutions will save us even as the GOP obliterates them, it's effectively working that way all the same.

Suffice it to say, I don't find it reassuring that we're being asked to put our faith in an investigation that hasn't even come close to curtailing the abuses of this administration — and in an election that is indubitably compromised by gerrymandering and voter suppression, and will probably be compromised by election interference both foreign and domestic.

...Like I keep saying: I am going to vote. I hope it still matters.
That having long been my position, you can imagine how I received the news that Mueller is so close to issuing his report, but not until after the midterms.

Sure, sure, you might want to hit the streets immediately after the midterms if it looks like they were rigged, but keep your ass firmly in your seat, because Mueller's coming!

Two. I wrote almost exactly two months ago:
I do not believe we are going to have free and fair elections in November.

Let me be abundantly clear, before I go any further: That does not mean I believe there is no reason to vote. To the absolute contrary, there is urgent need to vote. And there is urgent need to pay attention to how our votes may be compromised ahead of the election, if there is any possibility of making sure that they aren't.

Late last month, I noted that the Republican Party's vast and longterm voter suppression scheme — including but not limited to gerrymandering, voter purges, felon restrictions, Election Day disenfranchisement, and various erosions of voting rights — is a reason this election, like many before it, won't be fair, regardless of Russian interference.

(Side note: Russian interference and/or the interference of other nefarious actors. As I have noted, the very public failure to hold Russia accountable for election meddling not only means that Russia feels empowered to interfere in the midterms, but certainly so does every other state with the capacity and desire to do so. I fully expect that Russia will not be the only foreign state attempting to interfere and/or successfully interfering in the midterm election.)

And yet: Despite a comprehensive voter suppression campaign by the Republican Party, despite Republicans' previous concealment of suspected election interference, despite their refusal to designate election systems as critical infrastructure upon evidence of attempted Russian hacking before the last election, despite almost certain intervention by the Russians and others, despite the sitting president's support of domestic election meddling and his implicit threat to disregard the midterm election result if it does not go in his favor, virtually everyone is behaving as though we are going to have a free and fair election in November.

We are not. That is manifestly apparent. And still there has not emerged a better plan than pretending like everything is normal when it clearly isn't.
We are on the verge of another compromised election during which the Republican Party will further — and possibly permanently — consolidate its power behind Donald Trump, but the Special Counsel ostensibly tasked with investigating whether Team Trump colluded with a foreign adversary to fix the previous election won't release his findings until after the midterm elections, and we've collectively inexplicably decided that the best course of action is to trust in that Special Counsel and hope that this election won't also be rigged by the people in power who rigged the last one, and trust that if everything goes wrong (again) we will be able to retroactively fix our irreparably corrupted democracy, despite the fact that we clearly haven't been able to do that after the last time around.

I will vote. And I will hope that my vote counts. And I will wish as I cast it that way more of my fellow countrypeople had been far more honest about the stakes and what we needed to do to protect and defend our democracy long before Election Day.

It should be clear by now that relying on Bob Mueller to save us has never been enough.

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