Special Counsel Robert Mueller intends to financially “ruin” President Donald Trump by investigating the Trump Organization’s business operations, said Rush Limbaugh on his eponymous Thursday radio show. He also rejected ubiquitous news media and political narratives framing Special Counsel Robert Mueller as a man of integrity.
Limbaugh described Washington-based political and bureaucratic interests as broadly desiring an ousting of Trump from the presidency:
They want Trump gone. They want everybody anything to do with Trump gone. They all do. Everybody at the State Department, everybody in this immediate FBI circle with Rosenstein, Murphy, and McKinnon, the Republican establishment community, Republican consultants, they want Trump gone. Mueller is the guy to do it. Mueller is carrying the water for the entire establishment in getting Trump gone. And they don’t care how they do it. And I think their objective is to ruin him.
Limbaugh accused Mueller of seeking to “nullify” Trump’s 1995 IRS claim of approximately $900 million in operational losses in order to pursue a reclamation of the money with added penalties and accrued interest:
And these requests, the subpoena for documents from the Trump Organization, I ask you again, what has that to do with the campaign and with collusion and with the Russians? They’ve already been looking into Trump business in Russia with the Miss, what is it, USA, whatever his pageant is.
Do you all remember during the early days of the campaign there was news that Trump, in a tax return something like 20 years ago, took a $900 million deduction that was granted and survived an audit by the IRS? Now, I forget the details. It had to do with losses that he had incurred in that year in building things. It was around 900 or $920 million deduction. I’ll never forget when it was reported because most people will never come close to ever having that in a lifetime, and to have a guy personally write that much off?
Anyway, I think Mueller wants that $920 million back. I think Mueller wants to prove that that was a faulty deduction. I think that they want to go back, they want to get Trump’s tax returns because they want to nullify that $900 million deduction, and then they want to collect 20 years of interest and penalties and wipe Trump out.
Limbaugh also challenged the pervasive framing of Mueller as an honorable man across the joint news media and political landscape:
We’ve been told as long as I have been aware of the name Robert Mueller, we are told that Mr. Mueller is a man of impeccable character, a man of refined tastes, a man of immense sophistication and qualification. The man was a judge, he ran the FBI, he is a fair person. He’s an all-round good guy. And in terms of people in Washington when it comes to the integrity, there are none with any more integrity than Robert Mueller.
Well, I’m sorry, but that doesn’t fit with what we see this man doing. And what I ask myself is, does Mueller ever get up and ask himself, “What the hell am I doing? I don’t have a crime here. I don’t have any evidence of a crime.” Does Mueller ever get up or does anybody on his team, do they get up in the morning and they ever ask themselves, are we really doing the right thing here in seeking to destroy an American citizen whose only audacious behavior is winning the presidency?
A man of honor and integrity, suggested Limbaugh, would not accept a limitless role to pursue the political destruction of President Donald Trump: “There aren’t any limits on this guy! There is no crime that he has been charged with investigating. He’s been given a free rein to go find a crime anywhere he wants!”
“We’re told this guy’s the best of the best,” said Limbaugh. “We’re told this guy, nobody could hold a candle to him in terms of honesty and integrity and character. Well, then how does somebody with all of those fine traits even participate in a sham like this?”
Mueller’s mandate to “investigate Russian interference with the 2016 presidential election and related matters” — issued by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein — lists no financial or temporal limitations. In addition to a nebulous scope, no specific crimes are listed within the mandate.
MoveOn.org established a “rapid response” project in the event of Trump’s firing of Mueller, soliciting contact information from persons interested in political agitation operations.
Senators Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Ben Sasse (R-NB) — Never Trump politicians who both present themselves as conservatives — have both cast Mueller as an honorable man.