Special counsel Robert Mueller's questions for a potential interview with President Trump have leaked to the press. The New York Times published the list of four dozen questions, some of which focus on the president's ties to Russia, his business dealings, his motive in firing FBI Director James Comey, and his tweets.
"What was the purpose of your May 12, 2017 tweet?" one question reads. On that day, Trump tweeted that James Comey had "better hope" there are no tapes of his conversations with him before he starts leaking to the press.
"What was your opinion of Mr. Comey during the transition?" another Mueller question asks.
Former federal prosecutors reacted to the leaked questions on CNN.
Jim Schultz, a former Trump White House lawyer, saw a "downside" to making the questions public, because it will be hard for Mueller to narrow the scope of the investigation. Still, "it's in the interest for both" to put this investigation behind them rather than get into a lengthy legal battle.
Former federal prosecutor Laura Coates said the questions themselves don't surprise her, but she is surprised they gave so much information to Trump ahead of a potential interview because it may prevent him from being sincere in his answers.
President Trump condemned the leak on Twitter Tuesday. Yet, some are wondering whether his team is secretly glad they leaked, considering they may exonerate him from wrongdoing.
So disgraceful that the questions concerning the Russian Witch Hunt were “leaked” to the media. No questions on Collusion. Oh, I see...you have a made up, phony crime, Collusion, that never existed, and an investigation begun with illegally leaked classified information. Nice!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 1, 2018
"Witch Hunt!" he reiterated in a follow up tweet.