Eric Schneiderman

New York Attorney General Leads Resistance

New York Times: “How far Mr. Schneiderman is willing to go in taking on Mr. Trump could define his political career, particularly in a blue state where disapproval of the president is high. The attorney general’s office potential for troublemaking and generating national headlines was redefined in the early 2000s by Eliot Spitzer. Mr. Schneiderman is a less combative man who was often the target of Mr. Trump’s Twitter wrath amid a three-year civil investigation into Trump University. In the end, Mr. Schneiderman’s office extracted a $25 million settlement in the case.”

“Nonetheless, Mr. Schneiderman is seen by some as a possible backstop should the president exercise his pardon power to help those who might become ensnared in the investigation of possible Russian involvement in the 2016 presidential election being led by Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel. Federal pardons do not apply to violations of state law.”

Mueller Teams Up with New York Attorney General

“Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team is working with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on its investigation into Paul Manafort and his financial transactions,” Politico reports.

“The cooperation is the latest indication that the federal probe into President Trump’s former campaign chairman is intensifying. It also could potentially provide Mueller with additional leverage to get Manafort to cooperate in the larger investigation into Trump’s campaign, as Trump does not have pardon power over state crimes.”

Jonathan Chait: “Trump can pardon anybody facing charges from Mueller, but not from Schneiderman. It is probably significant that Mueller is letting this fact be known to Trump’s inner circle. Trump’s biggest source of leverage over Mueller just disappeared.”

Schneiderman Steps Up Scrutiny of Trump

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman (D), “to date one of the most vocal antagonists of President Donald Trump, is preparing to escalate his office’s litigation against the president’s administration,” the Wall Street Journal reports.

Schneiderman “has hired one of the top public-corruption prosecutors under former Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara to focus specifically on issues involving the Trump administration. Howard Master, who prosecuted the Manhattan U.S. attorney’s case against longtime New York state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver , is expected to work on both continuing and new White House-related matters for the attorney general, as well as on high-level public-corruption cases.”