- President Donald Trump is looking to bolster the legal team representing him in the Russia investigation, which could see some of his current lawyers replaced with new ones.
- That’s according a New York Times report published Monday night that cited people close to the president who said lawyers Ty Cobb and John Dowd could be on Trump’s cut list.
- The development follows news that a new lawyer the president may add to his team had previously asserted that the FBI and Justice Department are trying to “frame” him in the Russia investigation, suggesting Trump is interested in attorneys who will echo his increasingly aggressive tone on the matter.
Fresh off a weekend of increasingly aggressive public tirades against the special counsel Robert Mueller and the Russia probe, President Donald Trump is reportedly looking to reshuffle his legal team in search of a “magic bullet” who will cater to his mercurial approach to the investigation.
According to a New York Times report published on Monday night, two of the lawyers representing Trump, John Dowd and Ty Cobb, are said to be on Trump’s cut list, while a new attorney, Joseph diGenova, is joining the team.
Trump rejected assertions that he’s looking for new attorneys, praising Cobb, Dowd, and his other lawyer, Jay Sekulow, in a tweet earlier this month.
Rumours of a shakeup on Trump’s legal team are notable for several reasons:
- The Trump administration’s moves on the periphery of the Russia investigation suffered a weekend of brutal media coverage, after the firing of deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe on Friday.
- That action prompted Dowd on Saturday to insist that the Russia investigation be shut down. Trump reportedly told Dowd to make that statement, The Times said.
- Trump echoed Dowd on Sunday, calling out Mueller by name for the first time in a blistering remark on Twitter.
Taken together, a shuffle on the legal team suggests Trump might be looking for new defenders who will echo his aggressive tone on Mueller and the Russia investigation at large like diGenova, who has accused federal law-enforcement officials of trying to “frame” Trump with a “false Russian conspiracy.”
On the other end, Trump is said to be looking at a lawyer who has the expertise he might need if the Russia probe ends unfavorably for him. To that end, Trump recently interviewed Emmett Flood, an attorney who represented President Bill Clinton in his impeachment proceedings, The Times said.
Cobb and Dowd, the attorneys reportedly in Trump’s crosshairs, have generally pushed the president to be compliant with the special counsel, while quietly worrying that, ultimately, they won’t be able to control their client.