Former FBI boss Mueller’s probe blow to political rights

By Terry Evans
May 6, 2019

Former FBI boss Robert Mueller’s report on his conclusions from his inquiry into the sham claims of collusion between President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign and the Russian government was released April 18. It amounts to yet one more political effort to smear Trump, while Mueller is forced to admit there is no serious evidence of a link between Moscow and the president.

In the course of their efforts to criminalize political differences between the bosses’ two parties, liberals have celebrated methods used over decades by the capitalist rulers to target working-class fighters. Like all “special counsels,” Mueller’s operation was an unrestricted probe with vast powers to haul in and interrogate anyone they chose, to dig around for dirt, press for plea bargain confessions and enforce convictions. It undermined basic legal protections laid out in the Bill of Rights.

Despite two years and a squad of politically motivated FBI snoops, Mueller couldn’t find any credible evidence of collusion. But he spends hundreds of pages packing the report with lurid stories and innuendos against Trump — who, like all capitalist politicians from both parties, is no model of morality. He says the investigation now shifts to Congress, and works hard to give hints to keep multiple probes going. Mueller says while he can’t charge the president with anything, he “does not exonerate him” — as if it were Trump’s job to prove his innocence.

Some of the 19 odd Democratic presidential candidates, like Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris, and other party leaders are calling for Trump’s impeachment, while others like Nancy Pelosi are urging caution. All agree on gearing up for months of new fishing expeditions.

The real target of all the liberals are the millions of “deplorable” working people who voted for Trump or couldn’t bring themselves to vote for either of the two capitalist candidates in 2016. They’re convinced that workers who don’t vote the “right” way should have their voting rights restricted.

The Socialist Workers Party says workers don’t have a stake in this battle between Trump and the Democrats. The SWP ran its own candidate — Alyson Kennedy — campaigning for an independent working-class course against the carnage being imposed on workers and farmers by today’s crisis of capitalism.

At the same time, the party strives to expose and combat every move by the so-called liberal resistance that seeks to restrict the rights of the oppressed and exploited, from its glorification of the FBI to its attacks on workers’ rights.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler issued a subpoena April 22 demanding that Congress see an unredacted version of Mueller’s report. This includes sections withheld to protect the privacy rights of those forced to testify before Mueller’s grand juries, where you have no right to counsel.

Grand juries are fishing expeditions used by the wealthy rulers as an inquisition to frame up those who step out of line. Over many years the FBI has targeted the SWP and other fighters for labor unions, for Black rights and independence for Puerto Rico, and opponents of Washington’s wars.

Witch hunt law used on political foes

The first grand jury indictment Mueller secured was charging former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort under the Foreign Agents Registration Act. The 1938 law was adopted on the eve of the Second World War, along with other anti-labor laws, to provide legal cover for the rulers’ attacks on working-class militants, including the leadership of the Socialist Workers Party.

The FBI began investigating SWP members in the late 1930s under the Foreign Agents law before charging 18 leaders of the party and of the Teamsters union with “conspiracy to overthrow the government” under another witch hunt law. The SWP and the Teamsters were targeted because they organized opposition in the working class to the U.S. rulers’ entry into the war.

Gregory Craig was the first prominent Democrat to be charged in relation to “foreign lobbying” as a result of Mueller’s probe April 18. A five-year statute of limitations ran out on Craig’s alleged 2012 “crime” under the Foreign Agents Registration Act. But that didn’t stop prosecutors. Instead, they indicted him for making false statements about work he did for the Ukrainian government under another law. This law allows prosecutors who don’t have any evidence of a crime to set up those they’re pursuing by hauling them in, pressing them about an offense they can’t charge them for, and then charging them if they make a statement prosecutors claim is “false.”

A similar operation was used to railroad businesswoman Martha Stewart to prison in 2004.

Working people have every reason to oppose the use of these kinds of laws and frame-ups, regardless of the fact that they are being applied today against capitalist politicians in the Republican and Democratic parties. Such rulings, along with the FBI, the special counsel and grand juries are tools of a capitalist ruling class that is increasingly afraid of coming working-class struggles against the miserable conditions inflicted on our class.