Alan Dershowitz Explains How Trump May Have Already Undermined His Best Legal Defense Against Mueller

Alan Dershowitz — a legal expert who has become something of an unexpected defender of President Donald Trump on a number of issues in recent months — said Tuesday night that the president may have already undermined one of his best legal defenses against special counsel Robert Mueller.


Dershowitz made his comments on CNN speaking with host Anderson Cooper. Earlier in the night, multiple outlets reported that Mueller had raised the possibility of subpoenaing Trump if he refused to be interviewed willingly.

"The courts of law will compel him to answer some questions and, as I've said, perhaps the questions he's most vulnerable on," Dershowitz said. "I don't know, he may have no vulnerabilities at all. But he has no legal claim, no constitutional claim, about his business relations, what he did before he was president. There is some possible argument that he has some executive privilege claim."

In other words, Trump could be forced to testify on questions about his actions before he became president. The office of the president offers some protection from review, Dershowitz noted, but in Trump's case, he may have already undermined such a claim.  

"He may have waived some executive privilege," Dershowitz continued. "If you tweet and you go public and you say things and then say, 'Oh, I won't answer questions about that because I have executive privilege.' There is a concept of waiver and the president may have inadvertently waived some of his executive privilege by some promiscuously speaking and tweeting about many of these same issues in the public. So that could come back and bite him."

So because Trump has commented so extensively on Mueller's investigation by claiming he never obstructed justice or colluded with the Russians, he may have forfeited any claim a president that he can't be forced to speak on these matters by the special counsel.

Watch the clip below:

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

Close
alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.