( CNN) President Donald Trump's Supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh declared in 2016 that he wanted to “put the final nail” in the coffin of Morrison v. Olson ,~ ATAGEND a Supreme Court decision that upheld a court-appointed special prosecutor's power to investigate high-level executive branch criminality. Recently CNN also unearthed a 1998 videoof Kavanaugh saying, “It reaches no sense at all to have an independent advise looking at the conduct of the President.”( “Special prosecutor” and “independent counsel” can be used more or less interchangeably, although there are slight changes .)

The nail-in-the-coffin remark made significant media attention, but what does it really mean? A closer look at the 1988 Morrison decision — particularly at the dissent Kavanaugh appears to be echoing — presents why Kavanaugh's statement is so worrisome. If he is confirmed and uses a long enough nail, overruling Morrison could lead to ending the Mueller probe, too.

Many legal thinkers on the right have never accepted the Morrison decision, appearing instead to Justice Antonin Scalia's dissent in the case, which claimed the special lawyer provisions were unconstitutional. But Scalia's opinion was riddled with mistakes. He argued that prosecutors who analyse presidential criminality should give the president and top aides and officials “sympathetic” treatment. You read that right: Scalia actually was also expressed that chairpeople deserve a prosecutorial “forum that is attuned to the interests and policies of the Presidency.” It's supposed to be a “natural advantage” that chairmen earn by win elections, according to Scalia.

Video raises questions about Kavanaugh's views