By the numbers: Two on Mueller, three on the economy UPDATE on Mueller

Mueller:
First,
Last Wednesday I posted that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had spent $3.2 million in his first four months investigating Russian meddling in last year election and any links between President Trump and Russia.

But that’s not the real number: the Department of Justice spent $6.7 million, saying it’s not “legally required to figure out this total”(emphasis added),

according to a report released Tuesday.

Of the total, only $3.2 million was spent directly by Mueller on salaries, travel, rent and equipment through September.

The other $3.5 million was spent on DOJ operations and would have been spent on its own pre-existing Russia investigations if Mueller hadn’t been tapped to take over in mid-May. DOJ said it wasn’t legally required to figure out this total, and past special counsels didn’t tabulate it.

Second,
Peter StrzokAndrew Weissmann, and now Jeannie Rhee,

. . . this week, details of Rhee’s client relationships emerged, revealing that she representedObama Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes during the House Select Committee on Benghazi’s investigation of the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack.
. . .

Also this week, it was reported that Rhee represented the Clinton Foundation in 2015 against a racketeering lawsuit brought by conservative legal activist group Freedom Watch in 2015. Rhee also represented former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in a lawsuit seeking access to her private emails.

You read that right: The Clinton Foundation was her client, and Rhee represented Hillary in a lawsuit involving the missing emails. As if that were not enough, her husband served as special assistant to then-Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder.

You can’t make this up.

Hey, when you’re hiring Dem buddies from WilmerHale, they don’t come cheap. No wonder Mueller’s spending big bucks.

Conflict of interest, your name is Mueller.

UPDATE
MUELLER’S “RIGHT HAND MAN” IS THE GUUY WHO TOOK A HAMMER TO HILLARY’S BLACKBERRIES:
Debra Heine finds yet another Dem defender on Mueller’s team,

Aaron Zebley served previously as Mueller’s chief of staff at the FBI and as a senior counselor in the National Security Division at the Department of Justice.

. . . in 2015 when he was a lawyer, he represented Justin Cooper, the IT staffer who personally set up Hillary Clinton’s unsecure server in her Chappaqua home

Zebley went the whole nine yards, and, are you sitting down?

is also the aide who destroyed Clinton’s old BlackBerries with a hammer.

CORRECTION WITH APOLOGY: ZEBLEY WAS THE LAWYER FOR COOPER, THE AIDE WHO HAMMERED THE BLACKBERRIES.

Deb points out that he is often referred to in the media as Mueller’s “right-hand man.”

John Le Carré could not make this up.


The economy: Three headlines, 1 news (emphasis added)

WaPo neutral: The U.S. economy added 228,000 jobs in November, showing strong growth amid historically low unemployment

WSJ stats: U.S. employers hired workers at a strong rate in November and the unemployment rate held at a 17-year low, signs the economy is on its firmest footing in at least a decade.

NYT nostalgic: The U.S. economy added 228,000 jobs in November, a sign that hiring remains strong eight years into the current recovery.


Fausta Rodríguez Wertz writes on U. S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog