Multiple sources close to Bannon told The Daily Beast on Monday that he is “advocating a much more aggressive legal approach short of firing Mueller,” as one source put it, and has been mulling options that would effectively curtail the special counsel’s investigation into 2016 Russian election-meddling and alleged Trump campaign connections to it.
He’s being tight-lipped about the strategy so far—and it is unclear how robust an effort he’ll actually try to mount—but options are available to him.
One potential avenue is legislation crafted by Rep. Ron DeSantis, a Florida Republican and member of the House Freedom Caucus, an influential bloc of conservative lawmakers. DeSantis offered an amendment to a House spending package in August that would have barred Mueller from pursuing criminal charges for any conduct occurring before March 2015. That would have severely complicated Mueller’s indictments of Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, which rely in large part on alleged criminal conduct prior to the 2016 presidential campaign, when the two lobbied on behalf of a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine.