Former White House Special Counsel Kathy Ruemmeler explained that Trump and Giuliani are wrong. There is no attorney/client privilege between the president and the White House lawyer. Trump is freaked out because Don McGahn had to answer Mueller’s questions.
Reummler said on MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports, “I think Rudy is wrong. I understand why the president is wanting to take credit for the fact that his White House counsel has apparently provided a lot of information to the special counsel, but it really wasn’t a choice. Wasn’t a matter of strategy. Don McGahn is the White House counsel was a fact witness in a criminal investigation, and he has an obligation to answer questions that are put to him. It’s as simple as that. The D.C. Circuit court of appeals in 1998 decided this question pretty definitively and said if you are a government lawyer working on behalf of the American people, and you are advising the president or other government officials, there is not a traditional attorney/client privilege in the way we think about if you would go out and hire a lawyer as a private citizen and you are able to talk to your lawyer with an expectation of confidentiality. So that ship has sailed. And, you know, did the idea that somehow President Trump allowed his White House counsel to provide information, I think is, frankly, silly. There wasn’t a choice here.”
Trump and Giuliani don’t know what McGahn told Mueller
Trump and Giuliani and trying to spin McGahn talking to Mueller for 30 hours because they have no idea what the White House counsel told the Mueller investigation. Trump didn’t “allow” McGahn to testify. He had to testify under the law. Don McGahn is not Trump’s lawyer, so what he saw or heard, he had to tell the Special Counsel.
Trump and Guliani are freaking out and trying to spin McGahn’s legal obligation into investigative cooperation. They don’t know what McGahn told Mueller, and that fact is causing a great deal of fear in the president and his lawyers.
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