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Ex-Prosecutor Throws Down With MSNBC’s Ari Melber on Mueller Report: ‘That’s a Cheap Shot!’

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Former head of the Office of the Independent Counsel Robert Ray had a contentious interview with MSNBC’s Ari Melber regarding President Donald Trump‘s intense criticism of the investigation that eventually cleared him with colluding with Russia.

Melber asked Ray if it was a mistake “to constantly malign Mueller and the probe as a witch hunt.”

“There is a human dynamic here that shouldn’t be overlooked and that’s as I have said on many occasions, I would not wish a special counsel or independent counsel investigation on anyone,” Ray replied. “Because it is a very difficult to position to be in. I think the president well recognizes by this point that the firing of the FBI director has the consequences of putting him in a middle of a 22-month investigation,” he continued, adding he thought it was appropriate for Trump to push back because “it is in a political environment.”

“Did you always welcome it when you were running your probe? If somebody told law enforcement folks that they were basically doing something illegal and people should not corroborate with you and people should not do that or they’re rats?” Melber asked.

“My job was to defend the integrity of the investigation whenever I saw the need to do so,” Ray replied.

“I know, I am just curious if you think if it is good or not,” Melber pressed.

“I’ll leave to others to decide. No one ever  said this was going to be easy. The take away from this weekend beginning on Friday is that it was in the country’s interests to have this investigation. It was painful. We now have the results at least in part of that investigation,” Ray said.

Melber continued to press Ray on whether he thought it appropriate for the president to call witnesses “rats,” and the MSNBC guest fired back by reading out the criticisms that other guests of Melber made of Attorney General William Barr.

“My viewers are too smart for the game you’re playing,” Melber replied.

The interview got even more heated after Melber said: “You have the losing end of this argument. I hate to do this on national television. You know you just missed two opportunities to address the president calling people ‘rats’ for cooperating with law enforcement like yourself. You can own that.”

“That’s not what you’re doing what you are doing. All you’re trying to do is perpetuate a story,” Ray said. “That’s a cheap shot. Sorry to tell you, that’s a cheap shot.”

Watch above, via MSNBC.

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Julio has previously written for Independent Journal Review. He is currently a Military/Veterans Contributor for Townhall.com and serving in the Marine Corps Reserves.