The FBI and the Justice Department were pursuing that investigation aggressively for months before Mueller entered the picture. It has been over a year, and they don’t have it. If they had it, former FBI director Jim Comey would not have thrice told Trump he was not a suspect. If they had it, it would have leaked by now — the way every unflattering morsel has been leaked. And if they had it, they wouldn’t be poring over eleven years of Manafort’s checkered history; they would be arresting him for espionage in connection with the 2016 election.
If there is strong suspicion that Manafort has committed fraud crimes unrelated to the 2016 campaign, then fine, investigate him. But investigate him as you would any other white-collar fraudster who (a) has counsel willing to honor your lawful demands to produce evidence and (b) has, at least ostensibly, been cooperative. Paul Manafort is not Osama bin Laden, so there’s no reason for Bob Mueller to make like the commander of Seal Team Six.
Why is this worth pointing out? Because someday, maybe, we’ll get around to asking: What would have happened if Hillary Clinton’s very real email scandal — with its mountainous evidence of felony mishandling of classified information and destruction of government records — had been investigated with the no-holds-barred vigor Mueller and his band of Hillary donors are applying to the surmise of Trump collusion in Russian espionage?