Opinion and order here: https://www.politico.com/f/?id=00000163-6599-d92c-a17f-eddde22f0001 So much for that straw to grasp at, at least in the D.D.C. case... Quote from the intro of the opinion and order that sets this forth pretty clearly: "The motion to dismiss will be denied for a number of reasons. First, the indictment falls squarely within that portion of the authority granted to the Special Counsel that Manafort finds unobjectionable: the order to investigate “any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign.” Appt. Order ¶ (b)(i). Manafort was, at one time, not merely “associated with,” but the chairman of, the Presidential campaign, and his work on behalf of the Russia-backed Ukrainian political party and connections to other Russian figures are matters of public record. It was logical and appropriate for investigators tasked with the investigation of “any links” between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign to direct their attention to him. Thus, the Departmental regulations that Manafort claims were violated by paragraph (b)(ii) of the Appointment Order are not implicated here, and the motion, which supplies no other basis to dismiss the indictment, should be denied for that reason. But even if one posits that the scrutiny of Manafort’s alleged activities on behalf of Ukraine did not flow from the investigation of “links” to Russia that was assigned to the Special Counsel, and that instead, it was a “matter that arose” from that investigation, the indictment should not be dismissed. The second reason Manafort’s motion fails is that the Department of Justice promulgated the Special Counsel Regulations for its own internal management, and they do not create any substantive rights for the benefit of individuals under investigation. This means that Manafort cannot predicate a motion to dismiss on the regulations. Also, even if a judge were to conclude that the regulations could give rise to rights that can be enforced in a courtroom, the Acting Attorney General did not violate those regulations when he exercised his statutory authority to authorize the Special Counsel to investigate not only “links and/or coordination,” but also, “any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation.” The Acting Attorney General had the authority under the applicable statutes and regulations to define the Special Counsel’s charter broadly. Therefore, paragraph (b)(ii) of the Appointment Order – which does not appear to bear on this indictment in any event – is not invalid on its face. Finally, the case did not arise in a vacuum, and the Special Counsel did not create his own job description. He was appointed to take over an existing investigation, and it appears from the chronology and the written record that the matters contained in the Superseding Indictment were already a part of the ongoing inquiry that was lawfully transferred to the Special Counsel by the Department of Justice in May of 2017. More important, the Acting Attorney General has confirmed in writing that he assigned the Special Counsel the specific responsibility to investigate the very allegations that comprise the Superseding Indictment. This is exactly what the Department of Justice regulations contemplate: a specific factual statement of the matters to be investigated. So to the extent the regulations bear on this case at all, they were not violated; the management of the investigation into the allegations against Manafort has been consistent with the objectives and requirements of the set of regulations as a whole, as well as the terms of the individual regulation upon which the defendant relies."