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Marina Medvin, a contributor to Forbes.com, wrote today about a constitutional challenge which has been brought against the authority of Special Counsel Robert Mueller. The challenge was brought by counsel for Andrew Miller, an aide to Roger Stone, who was subpoenaed by Mueller. It comes in three parts: 1) that according to the Constitution, short of a presidential appointment, Congress must create a law empowering the Attorney General to appoint a special counsel and no such law exists; 2) even if such a law does exist, Attorney General Sessions’ recusal is not sufficient to empower Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein to make such an appointment; and 3) the powers which Mueller has utilized are far beyond those appropriate for a Special Counsel and are equivalent to those of a “super U.S. attorney.”

Miller’s argument lost in the district court and he has taken it up on appeal. Mueller filed a brief in response (interested readers can find it here). It is unclear what would happen to Mueller’s investigative findings should his powers be invalidated. The searches and subpoenas he has executed so far, if not backed by constitutional authority, are sure to equate to violations of the 4th amendment rights of his subjects. That being said, the invalidation of his power seems an unlikely result. As Mueller pointed out himself, there is strong precedent for his power, dating back to 1870.

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