CNN host Erin Burnett has a charge in search of a crime.
During a segment with former Attorney General Michael Mukasey on Monday night, Burnett repeatedly pressed him to say Trump’s rumored campaign talks with the Russians were illegal, going so far as to speculate the accusations amounted to “treason.”
Mukasey, who swatted down Burnett’s conspiracy theories by citing the law, was left in a position where he could only be stunned by her words.
The CNN host seemed to be desperately trying to pin anything on Trump.
Burnett read into a statement by current Attorney General Jeff Sessions after he said the DOJ has to remain independent, but that “not every contact is improper,” and that he has not examine the alleged contacts “in detail.”
“That’s what any person would say in his position,” Mukasey responded with a chuckle.
“Should he recuse himself and get a special prosecutor?” she asked.
“No!” Mukasey said. “Special prosecutor of what? Where’s the crime? We haven’t even named the crime, let alone suggested that charges are going to be brought.”
Mukasey swatted down Burnett’s apparent hope that any proof of conversations would be “a criminal act.”
“No, it wouldn’t,” he said.
“Even if they had regular contact talking about working together?” Burnett asked.
“The only statute I know that that conceivably violates is the Logan Act and that hasn’t been prosecuted since 1793,” he said.
“But I’m talking about collusion or ‘it would be great if you could find things on Hillary Clinton,’ those sorts of conversations,” Burnett said. “That would be treason, right?”
“What?” Mukasey said, astonished.
“No?” she said.
“No!” Mukasey said.
Burnett then subtly shifted to ask him if he was “fine with it” — moving from his interpretation of the law to his opinion.
“It’s not a question of being fine with it because I’m not fine with it. There’s a difference between treason and what I’m fine with or not. And saying you ought to get stuff on Hillary Clinton, believe it or not, is not a crime, even if you’re saying it to the Russians.”