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  1. The development “is a sign that Mr. Mueller’s inquiry is ramping up and that it will likely continue for months,” the newspaper reported.
  2. In a statement, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders highlighted that former FBI Director James Comey previously assured the president that he was not under investigation.
  3. "We have no reason to believe that has changed," she said.
  4. Ty Cobb, special counsel to the president, said he was unaware of the recent development in the Justice Department probe.
  5. "Grand jury matters are typically secret," Cobb said in a statement. "The White House favors anything that accelerates the conclusion of his work fairly....The White House is committed to fully cooperating with Mr. Mueller."
  6. The decision to impanel a grand jury does not mean that charges have been brought against President Donald Trump or any of his associates. Thomas Zeno, a lawyer who served nearly three decades as a federal prosecutor, told the Journal that, "It shows (Mueller) is very serious. He wouldn't' do this if (the investigation) were winding down."
  7. It is "an investigative step that will make it easier for (Mueller) to subpoena records, get sworn witness testimony, and potentially issue indictments," Vox reported.
  8. Reuters reported Thursday that grand jury subpoenas had already been issued in connection with a June 2016 Trump Tower meeting between the president's son, Donald Trump Jr., and a Russian lawyer. Emails released by the younger Trump showed he expected to be given information perceived to be damaging to his father's political rival, Hillary Clinton. The younger Trump insisted that he believed he was to get political opposition research.
  9. No information was exchanged, according to the younger Trump.
  10. CNN reported that the Mueller investigation is including a probe of possible financial ties between Trump, his associates and Russia. Sources, who were not identified, told the news network that officials are also scrutinizing possible attempts by Trump and others to obstruct the FBI investigation.
  11. Comey said during congressional testimony in June that he felt the president tried to pressure him into dropping the FBI's investigation into former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn four months earlier. Flynn was forced to resign in February, 24 days into his appointment, after it was revealed that he lied to Vice President Mike Pence about conversations he had with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak.
  12. The allegation led to speculation that president might have obstructed justice by attempting to influence the FBI probe.
  13. Josh Suteve, a spokesman for the special counsel, told Reuters on Tuesday that former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Greg Andres had joined Mueller's investigative team. Andres is the 16th lawyer to join the team.
  14. Trump has repeatedly denied any accusations of wrong doing, characterizing the numerous investigation into Russian interference in the election and possible collusion by Trump or his associates as little more than a "witch hunt."
  15. Mueller, who headed the FBI from 2001 to 2013, was named special counsel in an announcement on May 17 from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
  16. "What I have determined is that based upon the unique circumstances, the public interest requires me to place this investigation under the authority of a person who exercises a degree of independence from the normal chain of command," Rosenstein said.
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