Fox News legal analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano may have some explaining to do after his December 2018 statement that there was “ample evidence” to indict President Trump — and that he might already been indicted in secret.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller ended a lengthy investigation Friday by concluding that there was no evidence of organized collusion between Donald Trump and the Russians during the 2016 campaign. That leaves the Department of Justice with no reason to indict the president, as Napolitano suggested in might do.
“There’s ample evidence — this doesn’t require too much analysis — to indict the president,” Napolitano told Fox News anchor Shepard Smith in December. “The question is, do they want to do it? The DOJ has three opinions on this. Two say you can’t indict a sitting president, one says you can, but all three address the problem of what do you do when the statute of limitations is about to expire. All three agree in that circumstance you indict in secret, keep the indictment sealed and release it the day they get out of office.”
“So he may already be an indicted coconspirator?” Smith asked.
“That I don’t know about, but it could be, because we don’t know what’s been sealed,” Napolitano replied.
Representatives for the judge at Fox News did not immediately respond to request for comment from TheWrap.
Napolitano’s remarks caused a stir at the time and were re-aired on “Morning Joe” on Fox News’ rival network, MSNBC.
“Fox News analyst Andrew Napolitano is laying out quite a scenario after the president was implicated in the case against his former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen,” said “Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski. “Napolitano suggests the president … could already be indicted for directing Cohen to break election law by paying of two women to keep his alleged affair secret.”
The news was also picked up by MSNBC for dissemination to their broader audience.
The Napolitano prediction was particularly noteworthy given that many other Fox News personalities often defend Trump. Sean Hannity has regularly blasted the Mueller probe as a “witch hunt” — echoing the president’s own talking points on the matter.
“I have a message tonight for the special counsel, Robert Mueller,” he said as recently as January. “Your witch hunt is now over. Time to close the doors.”