Trump left with ‘fringy of the fringe’ lawyers as campaign attorneys revolt against his fraud claims: report
According to the Washington Post's in-depth look at Donald Trump's strategy to save his presidency with accusations of massive election fraud, the report notes that the president's legal options were impacted when lawyers working for the campaign fled rather than implement the president's plans.
The report notes that the president and his team started game-planning out a strategy to contest election results back in June with the expectation that he was looking at a tight election and plans were worked out to have Trump declare himself the winner the night of the election.
However, after Fox News called Arizona for Vice President Joe Biden that evening, those plans fell apart which led to an all-hands-on-deck meeting to come up with a new approach.
According to the report, that led to Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani's ill-fated press conference held in a landscape maintenance company's parking lot which set in motion an exodus of legal expertise.
The Post reports that the president's inner circle, "briefed Trump on a potential legal strategy for the president's approval. They explained that prevailing would be difficult and involve complicated plays in every state that could stretch into December. They estimated a '5 to 10 percent chance of winning,' one person involved in the meeting said. Trump signaled that he understood and agreed to the strategy."
The report goes on to note, "some lawyers around Trump began to suddenly disappear from the effort in what some aides characterized as an attempt to protect their reputations. Former Florida attorney general Pam Bondi, who had appeared at a news conference with Giuliani right after the election, ceased her involvement after the first week."
According to one campaign insider, "Literally only the fringy of the fringe are willing to do pressers, and that's when it became clear there was no 'there' there."
Giuliani's widely-derided press conference then led to a gulf "between the outlooks of most lawyers on the team and of Giuliani, who many of the other lawyers thought seemed 'deranged' and ill-prepared to litigate, according to a person familiar with the campaign's legal team. Some of the Trump campaign and Republican Party lawyers sought to even avoid meetings with Giuliani and his team. When asked for evidence internally for their most explosive claims, Giuliani and Powell could not provide it, the other advisers said."
According to the report, Giuliani's claims that he could win the case led to a shouting match between the former New York City mayor and Trump deputy campaign manager Justin Clark during a conference call where Clark "called Giuliani an expletive and said he was feeding the president bad information. The meeting ended without a clear path, according to people familiar with the discussion."
The report goes on to note that "the next day, a Saturday, Trump tweeted out that Giuliani, [Jenna] Ellis, [Sydney] Powell and others were now in charge of his legal strategy. Ellis startled aides by entering the campaign's Arlington headquarters and instructing staffers that they must now listen to her and Giuliani."
Powell has since been fired by the president for making claims about voter fraud that even the president found too farfetched.
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