This is purely a semantics problem. The verb “to collude” is not a standard legal term. The lawyers understand this, and know what Mueller is looking at the criminal act of conspiring with foreign entities, obviously Russian agents. So, if one simply substitutes conspiracy for collusion, then yes, we are likely getting close to charges of conspiracy with those close to Trump’s campaign.
I believe there are more criminal indictments to come. It is both ill advised, and premature to begin impeachment proceedings against President Trump.
There is more legal hairsplitting between a “target” of an investigation and a “subject” of one. Neither one is pretty as follows:
- A “target” is a person as to whom the prosecutor or the grand jury has substantial evidence linking him or her to the commission of a crime and who, in the judgment of the prosecutor, is a putative defendant.
- A “subject” of an investigation is a person whose conduct is within the scope of the grand jury’s investigation.
Donald Trump is the subject of the investigation and not the target of one. He may be getting closer every day to being a target.
The White House continues to slam the news media, FBI agents and the Department of Justice. Exactly how far President Trump is willing to go to defend himself, and close family members is still hard to say. It has been well established that Donald Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort attended a meeting with Russian agents in the Trump tower on June 9, 2016.
I believe Attorney General Jeff Sessions made an outstanding decision to recuse himself from the Mueller investigation. I believe Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein’s selection of Robert Mueller to head the Russian investigation was excellent. I am very impressed with FBI Director, Christopher Wray (Trump’s nominated director) and hope that he is able to rise above partisan attacks from Congress.
The investigation is getting complicated. Mueller has assembled what many consider, the most experienced career attorneys and FBI agents, to complete the investigation. White collar crimes, take a long time to litigate because there are teams of attorneys available for those charged with crimes.
The news media is doing a good job of getting the facts as they evolve. I continue to rely on Wikipedia’s summary, which has assembled one of the best summary of the investigation and its results. One has to distinguish between the real news reporting, which recently is the Manafort trial, and the commentary which surround it.
There is definitely more to come.
Normally, criminal investigations do not list every lawyer and FBI agent assigned to the case. However, congressional leaders, particularly Republicans in the House, have relentlessly subpoenaed thousands of documents in their attack on the Mueller investigation, to help the president and related campaign officials.