[Ed. – This is T.S. “C’mon man!” Ellis III, the judge who demanded to see the August 2017 scope memo from Rod Rosenstein to Robert Mueller, clarifying the scope of Mueller’s special counsel charter. Ellis has rendered his decision on Paul Manafort’s petition to have the old, non-Russia-related crimes removed from the current prosecution. Ellis ruled that Mueller can proceed with those crimes in the prosecution — because they do fit the scope memo’s terms. But he also wrote a terrific passage in the ruling highlighting the inherent danger of special counsel charters, precisely because they can legally unite what ought to be severable, in the interest of limited government.]
While ruling against Manafort in court on June 26, 2018, U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III made the declaration in a footnote in his decision:
15 Given the investigation’s focus on President Trump’s campaign, even a blind person can see that the true target of the Special Counsel’s investigation is President Trump, not defendant, and that defendant’s prosecution is part of that larger plan. Specifically, the charges against defendant are intended to induce defendant to cooperate with the Special Counsel by providing evidence against the President or other members of the campaign.