As lawyers quit or refuse to represent him, will Donald have to ask for a public defender?

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As lawyers quit or refuse to represent him, will Donald have to ask for a public defender?

Post by jserraglio » Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:25 pm

Fox News commentator and attorney Joseph diGenova turned Donald down. So did his partner in life and the law, Victoria Toensing. The story given out was they had "conflicts".

Top Washington lawyer Ted Olsen, a conservative, turned him down some time ago. Also Robert Bennett.

Prominent D.C. lawyer Dan Webb turned him down today. So did his partner Tom Buchanan. Business conflicts was the euphemism used to explain it..


The Independent UK

President says on Twitter lawyers are clamouring to represent him, but evidence suggests otherwise.

As Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation enters a critical phase, Donald Trump is apparently having trouble finding attorneys to represent him.

The President's legal team is in turmoil, with a series of changes in the past week paralleling heavy turnover within the administration. A key lawyer has left and others abruptly reversed on plans to sign on.

Amid that turbulence, Mr Mueller's probe into potential linkages between the Russian government and the Trump presidential campaign, having already penetrated the President's orbit, is drawing closer to Mr Trump himself. It could soon produce a climactic interview with Mr Mueller's team.

Last week, attorney John Dowd announced he was resigning as the President's lead lawyer in the matter. His departure reflected reported disagreement about the strategy for handling Mr Mueller's probe.

While Mr Trump has publicly embraced the possibility of speaking with the Special Counsel, the idea is said to have generated pushback from counsellors who are wary of the President's propensity for off-the-cuff speaking and statements that undercut or contradict previous positions. A refusal by Mr Trump to sit for an interview could set up a legal showdown, particularly if Mr Mueller subpoenas the President to appear before a grand jury.

Following close on Mr Dowd's departure came the news that attorneys Joseph diGenova and Victoria Toensing would not come aboard to represent the President, as previously announced, due to conflicts of interest.

The reversal left Mr Trump with a truncated team, and there are signs the President has struggled to fill the shortage. Several potential attorneys have declined to take on Mr Trump, according to reports, and one prominent attorney with experience in high-profile political cases decided to make his lack of interest public.

"I can confirm that @gibsondunn and Theodore B. Olson will not be representing @realDonaldTrump", attorney Ted Boutros - whose record includes repeatedly arguing landmark cases before the Supreme Court - said on Twitter.

From the beginning, Mr Trump has dismissed Mr Mueller's investigation as a politically tainted fishing expedition, denying allegations of collusion or personal wrongdoing even as Mr Mueller has indicted multiple former campaign aides and secured guilty pleas from two of them.

In recent days Mr Trump has intensified his attacks on the special counsel probe, reportedly against the advice of his attorneys. While his Twitter broadsides assailing the investigation are not new, he has for the first time named Mr Mueller himself as a potential interview looms.

"Why does the Mueller team have 13 hardened Democrats, some big Crooked Hillary supporters, and Zero Republicans? Another Dem recently added...does anyone think this is fair"? Mr Trump tweeted four days before Mr Dowd's resignation was announced.

But despite assurances from Mr Trump's legal team that Mr Mueller's work would be wrapped up by last year - and a statement from Mr Dowd shortly before his exit that the Justice Department "bring an end to alleged Russia collusion investigation manufactured by" former FBI director James Comey, whom Mr Trump dismissed - the probe shows signs of deepening.

Against that backdrop the President has been adamant in rejecting the notion that he is struggling to secure adequate legal representation.

"Many lawyers and top law firms want to represent me in the Russia case", Mr Trump wrote on Twitter over the weekend, adding that "Fame & fortune will NEVER be turned down by a lawyer, though some are conflicted".

"I am very happy with my existing team", the President wrote in a followup tweet. "Besides, there was NO COLLUSION with Russia, except by Crooked Hillary and the Dems"!

But Mr Trump's political foes saw signs of a legal team in disarray.

"It is impossible to overstate the amount of incompetence it takes to not know about the conflicts before announcing the hiring of these lawyers", former Barack Obama adviser Dan Pfeiffer tweeted in response to the news about Mr diGenova and Ms Toensing.

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Re: As lawyers quit or refuse to represent him, will Donald have to ask for a public defender?

Post by jbuck919 » Wed Mar 28, 2018 5:14 pm

I imagine that your subject line is facetious, but just in case, you know perfectly well that access to a public defender is means tested. The standard from Miranda is "and cannot afford one," not "cannot find one." I have no doubt that there are many accused of a crime who are put into bankruptcy because they don't qualify on the basis of an extremely low income threshold for public defense or various forms of legal aid, and many more who receive inadequate representation because they are bankrupting themselves just paying for mediocre layers who will take their case based on fee paid. Hope and pray that if you are a person of ordinary means or even less you never run afoul of the law, whether you are guilty or not.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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Re: As lawyers quit or refuse to represent him, will Donald have to ask for a public defender?

Post by jserraglio » Wed Mar 28, 2018 8:41 pm

jbuck919 wrote:
Wed Mar 28, 2018 5:14 pm
but just in case, you know perfectly well that ....
And you may know perfectly well (but just in case) . . . that President Spanky is an individual of extraordinary means who nonetheless may require a court-appointed attorney because most lawyers at reputable law firms . . .

1. Would be embarrassed by having a MAGA tattoo imprinted on their derrières.
2. Elect not to deface their brand with what they euphemistically call 'business conflicts', i.e., cries of alarm from big-name clients who fear they themselves will be stuck to the Trump tar-baby.
3. Prefer that clients not just accumulate billable hours but actually pay for them.
4. Avoid being enmeshed themselves (as Trump lawyer John Dowd apparently has been) in an ongoing obstruction of justice probe.
5. Require that a client not consistently disregard their professional advice.
6. Decline to represent a client who habitually lies to them about his conduct.
7. Fear being informed by a federal prosecutor that their own conduct puts them in conflict with the best interests of their client.
8. Think it the better part of discretion NOT to suborn perjury.

For these reasons, and not because I love lawyers the less or Trump the more, I conclude that said cash-rich but lawyer-poor individual has a constitutional right to court-appointed counsel.

If, however, the admirable LOTUS (Laughingstock of the United States) does manage to find a lawyer willing to represent him, I predict that lawyer's practice will be centered squarely in Palookaville.


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