In a tweet sent Saturday evening, President Trump may have undone limitations by his own White House placed on the FBI investigation allegations of sexual assault levied against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
The tweet in question, from Donald Trump's personal account, is attacking NBC reporting of the FBI probe, claiming that his office will allow the FBI to "interview whoever they deem appropriate."
NBC News incorrectly reported (as usual) that I was limiting the FBI investigation of Judge Kavanaugh, and witnesses, only to certain people. Actually, I want them to interview whoever they deem appropriate, at their discretion. Please correct your reporting!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 30, 2018
NBC news had reported on significant limitations on the scope of the FBI's investigation, including barring investigation of claims of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh brought forth by Julie Swetnick. The Wall Street Journal also reported on these same limitations.
The report had said that the White House counsel's office had given the FBI a lot of the people they were permitted to interview, which would make it difficult for the FBI to follow leads and bring in corroborating witnesses.
Don McGahn is the current White House counsel, and a friend of Kavanaugh. Donald Trump had previously announced the departure of McGahn from the position after the presumed confirmation of Kavanaugh.
It may seem odd that a presidential social media account could up-end limitations placed on the FBI by the counsel, but the Department of Justice made just this case in November of last year, telling a district court that his tweets are "official statements of the President of the United States."
It is also worth noting that McGahn has no legal authority to direct or limit the FBI's work, and that the President would hold sway over McGahn.
The new Trump tweet seems to contradict the presidents own statement from the 28th, saying that the FBI's investigation would be "limited in scope."
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