Twenty-Five: The Trump Family Member and Other Attorney-Client Delusions

On January 9, I did a post noting that at least 25 of the known witnesses or subjects of the January 6 investigation into Trump were attorneys.

In a filing yesterday, DOJ said the same thing: At least 25 witnesses, including one member of Trump’s family, withheld testimony or documents based on an attorney-client claim.

During the course of the Government’s investigation, at least 25 witnesses withheld information, communications, and documents based on assertions of the attorney-client privilege under circumstances where the privilege holder appears to be the defendant or his 2020 presidential campaign. These included co-conspirators, former campaign employees, the campaign itself, outside attorneys, a non-attorney intermediary, and even a family member of the defendant.

To be clear, we’re measuring two different things: for example, while the two Pats — Cipollone and Philbin — as well as Mike Pence’s counsel, Greg Jacob, withheld testimony in their first grand jury appearances, that was based at least partly on an Executive Privilege claim, one prosecutors ultimately overcame, not exclusively on their role as White House lawyers.

And I know I missed a bunch of people who invoked attorney-client privilege. For example, Bernie Kerik — who I didn’t count in my list — withheld documents until forced to share them in the Ruby Freeman lawsuit, based on a claim that his work as a researcher was attorney work product. The Georgia indictment alerted me that I had missed accused Trump co-conspirator Robert Cheeley — and there are probably attorneys in all the other swing states I missed too. I didn’t count the campaign itself. I sure as hell didn’t count any family member (I wonder if the big gap in the January 6 indictment where Ivanka should be is there based off a claim she was acting at the direction of Eric Herschmann, though Herschmann seems to have offered far more cooperation than Ivanka did).

However you count it, though, it’s a breathtaking number, one rarely taken into account by the TV lawyers wailing because it took so long to charge Trump.

And charge Trump alone.

That’s something I kept thinking about as I read this filing: Thus far, not even Trump’s alleged co-conspirators — all of whom might make an attorney-client claim (even Mike Roman might be that non-lawyer intermediary, though I think it more likely Boris Ephsteyn is CC6) have been charged.

The government’s argument itself makes a lot of sense. For example, it enumerates that Trump or his attorneys have claimed they’ll rely on an advice of counsel defense at least seven times.

1 Fox News, Aug. 1, 2023, at minute 3:03, available at

2 CNN, Aug. 1, 2023, at minute 2:20, available at

3 NPR All Things Considered, Aug. 2, 2023, available at

4 Meet the Press (NBC), Aug. 6, 2023, available at

5 Face the Nation (CBS), Aug. 6, 2023, at minute 24:11, available at

6 CNN, Aug. 6, 2023, at minute 7:58, available at

7 Donald Trump interview with Tucker Carlson, Aug. 23, 2023, at minute 34:35, available at

The government lays out precedent stating that Trump would have to waive privilege over and share communications that support his advice-of-counsel defense, but also communications over which he and the lawyer are currently shielding behind a privilege claim that would undermine it.

In invoking the advice-of-counsel defense, the defendant waives attorney-client privilege on all communications concerning the defense. See White, 887 F.2d at 270; United States v. Crowder, 325 F. Supp. 3d 131, 137 (D.D.C. 2018). Accordingly, once the defense is invoked, the defendant must disclose to the Government (1) all “communications or evidence” the defendant intends to rely on to establish the defense and (2) any “otherwise-privileged communications” the defendant does “not intend to use at trial, but that are relevant to proving or undermining” it. Crowder, 325 F. Supp. 3d at 138 (emphasis in original). See United States v. Stewart Rhodes, 22- cr-15 (D.D.C.), ECF No. 318 at 2 (quoting Crowder); Dallman, 740 F. Supp. 2d at 814 (waiver is for “information defendant submitted to the attorney on which the attorney’s advice is based, the attorney’s advice relied on by the defendant, and any information that would undermine the defense”); United States v. Hatfield, 2010 WL 183522, at *13 (E.D.N.Y. Jan. 8, 2010) (“This disclosure should include not only those documents which support [defendants’] defense, but also all documents (including attorney-client and attorney work product documents) that might impeach or undermine such a defense.”); United States v. Scali, 2018 WL 461441, at *8 (S.D.N.Y. Jan. 18, 2018) (quoting Hatfield).

Given that Trump would have to identify exhibits on which he would rely for an advice of counsel defense by December 18, the government argues, he should have to also identify the specifics of any advice of counsel defense by that date as well.

Given the potential number of attorneys and breadth of advice involved, the defendant’s notice should describe with particularity the following: (1) the identity of each attorney who provided advice; (2) the specific advice given, including whether the advice was oral or written; (3) the date on which the advice was given; and (4) the information the defendant communicated or caused to be communicated to the attorney concerning the subject matter of the advice, including the date and manner of the communication.

It makes this argument while also noting something that doesn’t, per se, support its case: that DOJ has already told Trump what these 25 people — and it invokes John Eastman, the person most often mentioned in Trump’s public claims of a advice of counsel defense, by caption — have identified in privilege logs.

In addition to having publicly advanced the defense, the defendant knows what information the Government has—and does not have—that might support or undermine the defense. The Government produced in discovery the privilege logs for each witness who withheld material on the basis of a claim of privilege on behalf of the defendant or his campaign, and in some cases the defendant’s campaign was directly involved in discussions regarding privilege during the course of the investigation. In other instances, the Government produced court orders requiring the production of material claimed to be privileged. Compelling the defendant to provide notice, and thereby discovery, would be reciprocal of what the Government already has produced. For example, defense counsel publicly identified one attorney on whose advice the defense intends to rely at trial, and the Government has produced in discovery substantial evidence regarding that attorney and his advice, including relevant search warrant returns.8 Any material relevant to that attorney’s advice that remains shielded by the attorney-client privilege should be produced to the Government at the earliest date to avoid disruption of the trial schedule.

8 That same attorney asserted an attorney-client privilege with the defendant and his campaign to shield material from disclosure to Congress. See Eastman v. Thompson, Case No. 8:22-cv-00099 (C.D. Cal.), ECF No. 260 at 15 (“The evidence clearly supports an attorney-client relationship between President Trump, his campaign, and [plaintiff] during January 4-7, 2021.”). [my emphasis]

Whatever else this motion is — and on its face it makes a lot of sense — it would also provide a means for DOJ to sort through some of the privilege logs it is looking at, and at least in the case of Eastman (if Trump indeed invoked his counsel as a defense) to breach those privilege claims and even obtain communications it does not yet have. Particularly given Clarence Thomas’ recusal on Eastman’s recently rejected cert petition, Eastman might have unidentified communications of particular interest.

Advance notice would also force Trump to rule out relying on the advice of others, like Rudy or Sidney Powell, as a defense, something that might make charges against them more viable.

I don’t imagine that DOJ would add any of Trump’s co-conspirators to his indictment so long as Trump’s trial happened before the election. They could always charge others separately, but so long as Trump had a chance of returning to the presidency, the only reason to do so would be if there were a legitimate hope of flipping the person or if it would make Trump’s alleged crimes more damaging politically. Trump has pardoned his way out of problems in the past and DOJ has to assume he would again, given the opportunity.

But in addition to making a solid case that Judge Chutkan should make Trump declare his intentions in December, this filing also admits that attorney-client privilege claims continue to blind DOJ to some of the universe of related communications pertaining to January 6.

63 replies
  1. Attygmgm says:

    Thank you for this post. I have appreciated the way the special counsel has litigated the privilege claims, both Executive and Attorney-Client. And how the judiciary has responded, parsing and narrowing those assertions of privilege, and applying the crime-fraud exceptions. Fair game for Trump et al. to try to spread privilege as far as possible, as dastardly as it sometimes appears, so it is critical that courts carefully weighing those claims, and shield only what is fairly asserted within the law.

  2. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Trump’s lawyers, of course, would have to testify as to what information Trump gave them and what their advice was, based on that information, which would lead to how closely Trump adhered to that advice. But the defense largely goes to Trump’s state of mind. How does he establish that he relied in good faith on the advice of his counsel without testifying?

    The defense would also free any lawyer whom he consulted on the subject to testify in rebuttal. Given how frequently Trump lawyer-shops for advice he wants to hide behind, he would be faced with multiple, often govt lawyers who gave him consistent advice that ran in one direction, with one or a few cherry picked lawyers, who gave him contrary advice, which he took and ran with. I don’t imagine that would be persuasive to a jury in establishing Trump’s good faith.

    • Ginevra diBenci says:

      earl, your comments hadn’t posted when I was writing mine. Trump’s lawyer-shopping seems to me, too, to be the most salient issue if he is indeed going with the advice of counsel defense.

      Essentially, I think we’re both saying that if you are POTUS and put out the call, you will find a lawyer to do your bidding, however malevolent and however much it compromises that lawyer’s career. And on the prosecution side are all those lawyers who tried to inform Trump of the actual legality (or lack thereof) of his desired actions.

    • Charles Wolf says:

      “How does he establish that he relied in good faith on the advice of his counsel without testifying?”

      It seems to me he can’t. He would need to testify at trial, and that would not work for him at all. Maybe he can use Eric as a character witness.

      • Rugger_9 says:

        I do not think Defendant-1 can dodge taking the stand either, because there is also minimal documentary evidence that would otherwise preclude the need to bring him in for answers. For example, how many of these 25 A-C claims actually have a legal agreement defining the terms of employment? The government ones may have it ex officio but the private attorneys need something like that to establish a relationship.

        While other witnesses can provide the information, it’s still subject to he-said-she-said claims.

      • ExRacerX says:

        “Maybe he can use Eric as a character witness.”

        I can’t imagine a character witness of bad character who also happens to be directly related to/reliant on the defendant would help tfg’s case…

        • theartistvvv says:

          I suspect you are responding to yet another post where “/s”, denoting “sarcasm”, would have been helpful to the reader.

      • Fran of the North says:

        Eric is definitely a character, and presumably a witness too. However, when those two words are combined, not so much.

    • Fraud Guy says:

      So not only did he shop to find an attorney to give him some semblance of what he wanted to hear, but DOJ gets to shop amongst the attorneys he chose to ignore for the most damning advice against his plan.

    • flounder says:

      As Trump relying on advice of counsel defense means having to establish on his own that he disregarded White House and DOJ Lawyers (at least until he could find one outside chain of command on elections willing to join his conspiracy) and found kooks and extremists, this does a number on his “Acting as POTUS” Defenses because Rudy is Trump’s “personal lawyer” and basically they were saying costs would be paid through campaign.

  3. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The client has to act in good faith, tell the lawyer the material facts, and act consistently with that advice. The lawyer also needs to be qualified and competent generally and in the subject matter of the dispute, and their advice needs to be correct. That puts Powell and Giuliani for example, in jeopardy. Giuliani, in particular, is vulnerable, owing to his alleged heavy drinking. Evidence related to that is fair game, as it would rebut both his competence and the client’s good faith reliance on him when giving it.

    • Ebenezer Scrooge says:

      Does the advice of the lawyer have to be “correct”, or merely reasonable? There is a lot of gray zone in many laws. Indeed, if the advice were correct, the advice-of-counsel defense would not be necessary–the defendant would have been acting within the law.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        I should have said ostensibly or apparently correct to a reasonable person. The other extreme, where reliance is not reasonable, is if the advice is patently incorrect. Examples are telling a client he could lie under oath without consequence, or ignore a complaint or subpoena without contesting it.

      • Harry Eagar says:

        There is a Clark Clifford anecdote about that.
        A businessman came to Clifford with a torturous problem. Clifford advised him, Don’t do anything, and sent him a bill for $75,000 (big dough in the mid-’50s).

        The outraged client sent back a letter whining that he had this terrible problem, that he had consulted Clifford and Clifford had done nothing for him. Why, he asked, should I do as you say?

        Clifford wrote back, ‘because that is my advice” and billed him another $25,000.

        It turned out to be good advice and he businessman paid.

        (Reported as a veracious story in a NYTimes profile during the Watergate kerfuffle.)

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Sometimes, doing nothing is the smart move and hard advice to give to a client itching to do something. But the story is a non sequitur in the context of this thread.

          As you say, a hundred grand was a lot of money in the 1950s. If the guy paid, it wasn’t a social chat among friends. It was legal advice exchanged between movers and shakers, provided under a mutual expectation that it was a fee for service. That’s not a common arrangement for lawyers and clients.

    • Super Nintendo Chalmers says:

      IANAL. I’d include Eastman too because his expertise as a Constitutional scholar is questionable since Eastman seemed to believe in 2020 that OAKLAND born Kamala Harris was ineligible to serve as VPOTUS or POTUS (see Newsweek article from 2020).

      • scroogemcduck says:

        I just read that. Hoo boy is it problematic. No wonder Newsweek had to add a lengthy “Sorry and we are not a bunch of Nazis – honest!” disclaimer to it.

    • Dave_MB says:

      The problem they’re going to run into is they needed counterfeit electors to put their plan into action. Two states worded their electors as alternate electors in the event that Trump won his lawsuits. The other ones stated they were the duly appointed electors by their respective states. When they clearly weren’t.

  4. Ginevra diBenci says:

    Relying on an advice-of-John Eastman’s-counsel defense makes a certain amount of sense. Trump can argue that Eastman was a “respected constitutional scholar” to a jury comprised of not-EW-readers with some credibility. But the California judge’s crime-fraud finding will surely come in too; more respected scholars than Eastman have succumbed to temptations academia can’t offer.

    I wonder if Trump’s team has ditched Rudy as being among the “counsel” whose urgings innocent babe-in-the-woods Trump took as solid legal advice. “Crazy” Sidney Powell will likely follow. Then they will face the ranks of lawyers who repeatedly attempted to advise the then-president in ways that ran counter to his selfish wishes, and got shut out of the decisions that led to J6.

    Advice of counsel may be the best they’ve got. I’m glad I’m not them.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Depends on when they gave the advice Trump claims to have relied on. Eastman’s advice would be questionable in any event, because it was far outside the mainstream. Nor is it likely to be persuasive to a jury, as he is about to lose his California bar admission, in part because of that advice. Nor is he likely to present well compared to DoJ and White House Counsel.

      • Ebenezer Scrooge says:

        You don’t have to sign anything to become somebody’s lawyer. A lawyer can get sued in malpractice for giving impromptu legal advice at a cocktail party. I know one lawyer whose signature line on their private e-mail account is: “I am not your lawyer. You are not my client. This is not legal advice.”

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Give me a break. Exceptions are not rules. In court, lawyers or clients have to prove an A-C relationship exists. It’s possible to do it without an engagement letter, but it’s a lot harder.

          Lawyers use engagement letters to define the scope of their work, to limit their liability, and to get paid.

          Getting sued for giving “legal advice” to randos at a cocktail party is an urban legend. It’s possible, but bloody hard to establish that the advice was reasonably intended as legal advice for a specific client.

          • theartistvvv says:


            I can’t confirm lawsuits one way or another but the various continuing education classes here in IL, most seemingly provided by professional liability carriers, stress letters of engagement and non-engagement constantly. The concern is not only law suits, but ethics complaints.

            I can’t confirm the cocktail party stories personally (I often don’t remember any conversation by the next day /s) one way or another, but I will say that without exception every email communication with any attorney or firm in recent years has had a disclaimer at the end.

            I’ll further add that I respond to phone calls engendered by advertisements on a daily basis – I send an engagement or declination letter on every one if possible* (it’s also good advertisement of course – “catch you on the next one”).

            *”not possible” is where the caller declines to give contact information, which results in the end of the conversation.

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              Most state bar association ethics rules – and malpractice insurance carriers – require written engagement letters, whether the representation involves litigation or not.

              Regardless, it’s basic lawyering to disclose to the client and obtain their written consent for such things as fees, expenses, disbursements, conflicts, scope of work, that there is no guarantee of a specific outcome, amounts a client would be liable for if a win does not cover all costs, etc.

        • Dave_MB says:

          Regarding cocktail party chatter. If you’re a doctor or a lawyer people are always going to hit you up for advice. I’d respond with 2-3 minutes of generalities and tell them if they want to talk about their specific case, they should contact me during the day at my office where I have tools to adequately address their situation.

    • Critter7 says:

      But we can also recall Eastman’s – shall we say – “shifting positions” on issues of importance to the J6 events.

      As noted by J6 Committee final report p30 & p432, Eastman’s pre-election opinion was that the VP’s only role in certification was to open and count the electoral ballots. But then after election day when Trump called on Eastman for advice, he changed that position, telling the Don that the VP could also decide which ballots to count.

      Also according to Greg Jacob and according to Pence in the WSJ excerpt (“My Last Days With Donald Trump”) from his book, Eastman did some flip-flopping in advising Pence while also trying to satisfy Trump immediately prior to Jan 6.

      How Eastman’s inconsistency might affect a Trump defense that he relied on John Eastman for counsel, I do not know.

  5. Savage Librarian says:

    Tiffany, who received her J.D. in May 2020, will be 30 on Friday (yes, the 13th.) She married Michael Boulos, a Lebanese-American billionaire heir, in November 2022. Unlike Ivanka, it doesn’t appear as if she has distanced herself from Donald. But, then, who knows for sure.

    Anyway, is there any chance she might be a family member who provides/provided counsel to Mr. Trump?

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      There would not be much good faith in relying on legal advice from a jejune family, who would have been twenty-seven-in October 2020. She would have had the legal experience of a clerk, and virtually none beyond basic Con. Law, regarding the separation of powers and the rights and privileges of the American President. There would be even less good faith when relied upon in lieu of contrary advice, if that’s what it was, from the DoJ and White House Counsel.

      • Sheesh49 says:

        As far as I know, Tiffany Trump has not taken any bar exam since she graduated from law school in mid 2020 and therefore is not a practicing attorney and cannot give professional legal advice.

        • Savage Librarian says:

          Yeah, I was wondering about passing the bar. And it also seems she has questionable judgment. Apparently, January 6 is Eric Trump’s birthday (Can you imagine?!!) And Tiffany tweeted him cheery greetings at 5:48pm on the day of the insurrection. Also, Tiffany is the only adult child that the J6C didn’t seem interested in interviewing.

          I think Marcy’s suggestion is more likely, that the family member may be Ivanka who conferred with Herschmann. The link below shows the tweets that day from Trump’s 4 adult children. One was Ivanka calling the mob “patriots.” Then she deleted that tweet. So, the redacted parts of Ivanka’s testimony would be helpful to know.

          “ ‘Read The Room’: Tiffany Trump Stuns With Birthday Tweet Amid Capitol Violence”

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          By definition, it would be unreasonable to rely on the advice of someone not a member of the bar.

  6. greenbird says:

    can i get a Bayeux Tapestry version of this ?
    it’s just begging for the well-armed principals, also horses, ravens, dogs, fire …

    • canajan-eh_I says:

      Perhaps an artist’s conception of the COVID-19 virus could substitute for the embroidered Halley’s Comet on the original.

  7. RobertoW23 says:

    As this is my first post, it’s appropriate to state I’m not a lawyer, nor a celebrity. I’m simply another citizen trying to discern the truth from fabrication and mis-direction. Empty Wheel has become my primary source for all things ‘truthful’. It is quite humbling, though keeping up with hundreds of comments can be particularly challenging. I try.

    Thank you.

    I read what supporting docs I can and recently read: DISPUTED PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS AND THE COLLAPSE OF CONSTITUTIONAL NORMS by Matthew A. Seligman. It was submitted to the disbarment hearing regarding John Eastman. For a lay person it was a deep dive. His explanation of the 1887 law as it relates to the ‘intent’ of the presidential election process was illuminating. Plus Mr. Seligman makes several recommendations regarding fixes to the Act of 1887.

    So I’m most interested to hear what others thought of what Mr. Seligman had to say. His suggestions for ‘fixes’ seemed quite reasonable. The 97 page paper has been mentioned in the media a couple of times-

    • Rayne says:

      Welcome to emptywheel. Seligman also wrote this piece in Politico:

      How Panic on the Left Could Spark a Constitutional Crisis

      The problem with that piece is that Seligman cannot be certain how any one state legislature would act. As an example, could any of us have predicted that Idaho’s GOP state legislature would not only outlaw abortion but kill support for pregnancies? Why should the rest of the US trust such a state when it comes to the outcome of federal elections?

      In other words, take Seligman with a grain of salt. He may may make good points but no strategy survives contact with reality.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        That article engages in professional pooh-poohing of the left’s concerns about the consequences of the S.Ct. adopting the independent state legislature doctrine.

        The idea that “panic” on the left is what might spark a constitutional crisis understates the problem – he claims it’s the left that overstates the problem – in what looks like an attempt to carve out an academic niche from the center right, which many at Stanford would consider the hopeless left.

        • Rayne says:

          Never mind, Madge, we’ve already been soaking in constitutional crises.
          US Capitol Builing January 6, 2020: Flash bangs as insurrectionist rioters assault the capitol.  Photo: Leah Millis-Reuters

          Look at all these progressives panicking. *eye roll*

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Silly me. I failed to notice that the author of that Politico article, Matthew A. Seligman, is a fellow at Stanford’s “Constitutional Law Center.” As with all things Stanford, one needs to check connections with the Heritage Foundation. Turns out, that center is run by… Michael McConnell, a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

      • RobertoW23 says:

        Yes, I had read, saved and annotated the Politico article. And it had really pissed me off. Which is why I almost did not read Seligman’s report to the John Eastman disbarment proceeding. It’s like they were written by two different people with two different ideologies.

        The Politico article seemed to me, what you get, when having an open discussion and the other side can’t make a legitimate counter argument. So they resort to declaring their opponents are responsible for the very issue(s) being considered. DJT does that all the time. Or that they declare you are making a ‘mountain out of a mole hill’. All in an effort to marginalize the issue at hand. So he resorts to the oldest rule of marketing- “If you can’t convince ‘em, confuse ‘em.” Because if they really did spill the beans on their plans, their ambitions, we would do more than just ‘vote them out of office’.

        It saddens me that Politico allowed this editorial onto the pages of its website. Make no mistake, this is simply a ‘kinder, gentler version of fascist propaganda where the banks and heavy industry set policy (via their army of Congressional lobbyists) the rest of us must follow. Which always takes me back to this key question- who does ‘our’ government serve? You and me, the electorate or them, corporate interests with no concerns regarding the customers they serve?

        This Politico article is the very type of far-right think tank driven content you will see quoted over and over again on FAUX NUZ and stations like them. It’s heavy on bs and light on any actual facts. But hey, they don’t NEED facts, they got guns. Seligman makes a point of mentioning that near the end or the article. Thing is, I always assume the other guy is armed and might be mad enough to use it. Simple civil discourse seems to be a thing of the past. I’m old enough to know what that looks like. Unfortunately, there is no more ‘sanctity of life’ concerns, no moral concern for anyone or anything, other than their ‘clan’ and ‘clan leader’. I have no idea how we get past that.

  8. velcroman says:

    I apologize if this is an uninformed question, but –
    What happens to Trump if he uses the advice-of-counsel defense, but simply refuses to hand over any documents he doesn’t want to?

    That would delay the trial and protect his interests. He can claim that the corrupt courts were forcing him to violate the sacred attorney-client privilege, and most people will stop paying attention after that.

    What stick does the court system have to compel him to supply documents? I don’t think imprisonment is on the table. Maybe fines, but they would have to be pretty big. Is that allowed?
    And of course everything will feed into his perceived victimhood, but there is not much we can do about that. Can the courts go through his lawyers, and can they provide the documents against his wishes?

    • brucefan says:

      I believe the judge can prohibit Trump from using the advice of counsel defense if Trump does not comply with the procedures for invoking that defense.

        • brucefan says:

          Pretty sure, based on reading the Motion twice.

          After I read the cases, I won’t say “I believe.”

        • brucefan says:

          We were relying on an affirmative defense and it was clear to me that we needed to raise it on time, and raise it properly or it was not available to us.

        • Ginevra diBenci says:

          I thought EW wrote that should Trump use the advice of counsel defense, he would indeed be compelled to turn over to the prosecution all material relevant to that defense. As she described it, it seemed quite inclusive.

          • bmaz says:

            Yes, but more importantly, how are you going to get it into evidence without the client waiving, testifying and laying the foundation for the argument? It would be darn near impossible. Material does not admit itself into evidence, nor explain the affirmative defense being asserted.

  9. vinniegambone says:

    Defence of Counsel will make Trump look stupid and weak to his base especially if he must identify which counsel he took advice from for his words and actions. You listened to these knuckleheads ?

    The trial then becomes mostly about the lawyers advice and less about what Trump did or did not do. Now the lawyers are on trial for their advice and Trump is not .
    IANAL but that’s how i see it.

    Plus that defence leaves him admitting he did do the crimes he’s accused of but he was misguided.
    Using advice of counsel defence is bad advice from his current counsel , and it’s counsel i wager Trump decides against. Isn’t there lots of clips where Trump imitates George Bushes famous ‘ I am the decider’ line ?.

  10. brucefan says:

    “You listened to these knuckleheads ?”

    His base would likely say “quite clever to find a lawyer who would trash his reputation/livelihood to give you cover for your coup.”

    The lawyer gets disbarred and Trump gets acquitted.

  11. vinniegambone says:

    My point exactly. The lawyers are on trial, and not Trump.

    However, ample evidence Trump searched for knucklehead lawyers who gave him advice (cover) for what he had already decided he wanted to do – stay in power by any means available.

    Not sure in which circle of hell they reside, but Trump being acquitted, or winning the presidency, either, will mark the end of my belief in my country and country men. I will be packing my bags and exiting , stage left.

    • bmaz says:

      I am not so sure about that. There would be about a 50 gallon can of worms for Trump to attempt that. And he would very likely have to take the stand, which would be a very bad idea. So, I’ll believe this defense when I see it. Not buying it now though.

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