The issue of the Russia investigation, as led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, has occupied the Trump administration for some time at this point. Mueller was appointed last year a short time after Trump fired the previous head of the investigation, FBI Director James Comey, and in the time since, he has faced harsh attacks from Republicans and allies with the president.
However, Nikki Haley, the current United States Ambassador to the United Nations, says that while she is skeptical of the investigation like many of her administration colleagues, it should be allowed to proceed unimpeded.
When asked whether the investigation should be shut down, she told journalist Rita Braver:
‘No, not at all — I mean, anything that comes like this, it should play its part. It should go through the process. But they need to do it quickly. For the good of the country this investigation needs to happen quickly.’
The president himself maintained a public face of allowing the investigation to proceed during its initial phases but in recent weeks and months, his public attitude towards the special counsel’s investigation has become more harsh.
For example, on April 20th of this year, the president tweeted a message reading:
‘James Comey illegally leaked classified documents to the press in order to generate a Special [Counsel]? Therefore, the Special [Counsel] was established based on an illegal act? Really, does everybody know what that means?’
In fact, Comey has not been found to have “illegally leaked classified documents” in sharing memos of his interactions with the president with the press, but the obvious implication of the president’s message here is that he believes the Mueller probe has no legal standing.
One of the most recent catalysts for the president’s anger with the Mueller probe was the round of raids on his personal lawyer Michael Cohen’s home, office, and hotel room. Those raids were carried out as a part of a criminal investigation separate from the Mueller probe, although there were reports at one point that investigators were acting in part on a tip from the special counsel.
The president has proven more than happy to use the whole ordeal to vent publicly rather than privately about the special counsel, offering a noncommittal answer when pressed about whether or not he’d fire him.
Blind fury with Mueller is not the only point on which Haley breaks with Trump, although overall, she remains in theory ideologically aligned with the administration.
She declined to defend his “communication style” when pressed by Braver, and she added that she does sometimes privately bring concerns to the president about certain expressions of that “style.”
On another note, she has faced and combated sexism — even since joining the Trump administration — while her boss has proven to be an ardent peddler of it.
On a practical level, she at one point recently clashed with the administration and said that she does not “get confused” after Trump’s new economic adviser Larry Kudlow tried to use that defense to explain why she’d asserted sanctions were coming against Russia after a chemical attack in Syria carried out by the Kremlin’s pet regime. The administration did not actually announce any new Russia sanctions in that context.
Despite the differences, Haley continues to serve in the Trump administration, and asserted when asked by CBS’s Braver that she’s not focusing on possibilities for the future like a presidential run.
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