During a segment on Fox & Friends Wednesday — President Trump’s favorite morning news show — host Brian Kilmeade argued that Special Counsel Robert Mueller was not “demographically pursuing justice“ in the Russia investigation because his federal grand jury included too many black jurors. The comment was in response to a leak published in New York Post, during which an anonymous source claimed grand jury panel looked like a “Black Lives Matter rally.”
“[The source from the New York Post interview] described the jury as a–people that would appear at a Bernie Sanders rally,” Kilmeade stated, quoting the Post’s source. “So it’s not even emblematic of something that might be, perhaps, demographically pursuing justice.”
Kilmeade’s sentiment’s echoed the Post’s unnamed source, who appeared very sympathetic to Trump.
The grand jury room looks like a Bernie Sanders rally. Maybe they found these jurors in central casting, or at a Black Lives Matter rally in Berkeley, [California]…. There was only one white male in the room, and he was a prosecutor.
The witness also claimed that 11 of the 20 jurors on Mueller’s panel were Black, and that two had been wearing “peace T-shirts.”
“That room isn’t a room where POTUS gets a fair shake,” they said, insinuating that more white jurors were necessary for the process to be deemed fair and credible.
Both the New York Post and Fox News, the home of Fox & Friends, are owned by News Corp media mogul Rupert Murdoch, a conservative publisher and Trump ally.
Both Kilmeade’s comments on Wednesday and the incendiary Post interview are the latest in a long line of attempts by conservatives to undermine the ongoing Mueller investigation, which centers on Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, and recently handed down several charges against former Trump campaign officials Paul Manafort and Rick Gates. Former foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos and Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn have also pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about their communications with Russian officials.
Trump himself has spent much of the past year insisting that the Mueller probe is a partisan witch-hunt meant to delegitimize his victory. Many of Trump’s strongest supporters have joined his effort to discredit the special counsel’s office.
In November, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) introduced a resolution calling for Mueller to recuse himself, effectively bringing the Russia investigation to a halt. Gaetz argued that Mueller was biased due to his prior involvement with the largely debunked Uranium One scandal.
One month later, congressional Republicans also called for an investigation into the Russia probe itself, arguing that the personal political beliefs of two former staffers proved the investigation had been tainted from the start. Their claim hinged on a series of private text messages from 2016 between senior FBI agent Peter Strzok and senior FBI lawyer Lisa Page, in which the two discussed their mutual dislike of then-candidate Trump. Both Strzok and Page were dismissed from the case earlier in the year after the messages first came to light.