Then in April, the most amazing thing happened. One of the indicted companies informed Mueller that it had retained US counsel and would see him in court. You could hear the collective sphincters of the special counsel’s office snap shut as far away as Kenosha, WI.

Now the little publicity stunt, the bone tossed to the NeverTrump crowd, suddenly became a liability. Just how big a liability became obvious yesterday and today.

Because the Russian oligarch has enough money to hire real lawyers who fight for a living, Mueller faced real opposition rather than people with no resources to defend themselves. You can be excused for looking at the manhandling Mueller’s people took from Manafort’s legal team and concluding they aren’t used to doing much besides bullying indigent defendants into a plea bargain.