Robert Mueller’s special counsel has spent $3.2 million on Russian collusion investigation: Report

Costs have reportedly covered 17 staffers, travel and rent

By Nicole Karlis

Published December 5, 2017 5:08PM (EST)

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller (Getty/Saul Loeb)
Former FBI Director Robert Mueller (Getty/Saul Loeb)

Robert Mueller has spent $3.2 million since May on the probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, according to a report released by the Justice Department today. The Justice Department spent another $3.5 million, totaling $6.7 million on the investigation thus far.

According to the report, Mueller’s expenses have mostly covered the following:

$1.7 million on “personnel compensation and benefits”
$223,643 on travel
$362,550 on rent, communications & utilities
$26,442 on supplies and materials

The investigation’s fund has been a hot topic among Republicans, and Trump has publicly tweeted about his disapproval for the investigation publicly calling it “costly” on Twitter.

“It is now commonly agreed, after many months of COSTLY looking, that there was NO collusion between Russia and Trump. Was collusion with HC!”

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 6:33 AM - 27 Oct 2017

Now that Mueller’s expenses have been publicly released, it will be interesting to see if the president does in fact think $3.2 million is costly. Trump’s vacation golf trips to the Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, which he owns, have been far costlier. While Trump’s travel expenses aren’t public, Politico has estimated that one trip to his Mar-a-Lago estate costs taxpayers around $3 million, and CBS reports that he has visited 8 times thus far this year with a ninth trip planned for this weekend.

From that perspective, Mueller’s costs seem quite lean.

While the release of Mueller’s budget was reportedly not mandated, it could be possible that the Justice Department released the expenses publicly for the sake of transparency, or to quell speculation. Recently, reports have circulated that Mueller sent a subpoena to a Deutsche Bank seeking information regarding Trump’s business dealings.


Nicole Karlis

Nicole Karlis is a staff writer at Salon. Tweet her @nicolekarlis.

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