Following recommendations by New York prosecutors on sentencing former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen Friday, Mueller submitted his own comments on Cohen's fate, including commentary on the details of Cohen's cooperation with Mueller's investigation into alleged Russian collusion with Trump's 2016 election team.
Trump's cryptic tweet, made less than an hour after the documents were submitted, seemed to reference the filing, saying simply, "Totally clears the President. Thank you!"
Totally clears the President. Thank you!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 7, 2018
Members of the US Congress assumed this was what Trump meant, but drew opposite conclusions from Mueller's words, because in Cohen's court case, an entity referred to as "Individual-1" has been speculated by many to refer to the president himself.
Dear @realDonaldTrump: I think you might not know that the person prosecutors identify as Individual-1, who committed multiple felonies, is you.— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) December 7, 2018
You may want to read the court filings today. https://t.co/w7gn0kazzw
Taking to Twitter, they offered their rebukes of the commander-in-chief's attempt to turn the investigation on its head.
You know what delays the #RussiaInvestigation more than anything? Liars, tamperers, and obstructors — and you have all of these misfits on the Trump Team and inside the White House. All of them being led & emboldened by Individual-1, @realDonaldTrump.— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) December 8, 2018
Many also brought up the fact that while pleading guilty in August, Cohen testified that Trump directed him to break campaign finance laws — a felony offense.
So it’s Friday night and, well, the Southern District of NY (Trump’s DOJ, appointed by Trump, not Mueller) has directly accused @realDonaldTrump of a felony.— Jim Himes (@jahimes) December 7, 2018
This is looking less and less and less like a witch hunt.
Others pointed out how Trump's own Department of Justice was the one proving such things, suggesting this meant the investigation couldn't be a "witch hunt," as Trump has often called it.
An official statement from individual 1, who prosecutors now say participated in multiple felonies: https://t.co/EEDdP1PMAb— Rep. Jim McGovern (@RepMcGovern) December 7, 2018
Others just took the opportunity to whale on the president for getting egg on his face.
Cohen could receive up to five years in prison, although Mueller has recommended that his sentence not exceed that, due to his moderate level of cooperation with the prosecution.