Sekulow Sees ‘No Such Thing as a Fair Shake’ for Trump in Mueller Interview
No self-respecting lawyer would allow his client to enter a perjury trap given 'everything that’s transpired and continues to transpire' during Russia probe
There is no “such thing as a fair shake” for Donald Trump in an interview with special counsel Robert Mueller, presidential lawyer Jay Sekulow warned Wednesday night in an exclusive interview on Fox News’ “The Ingraham Angle.”
“I’m not inclined to believe at this point, in the nature and scope of where this investigation is, that there is such a thing as a fair shake,” Sekulow lamented. “This is an investigation that [from] its outset has been corrupt. There’s no question about that … I think it needs to end very soon.”
In a reply Wednesday to Mueller’s latest proposal for interviewing the president, Sekulow said in a statement that “it is not appropriate at this time to comment publicly about the content of that response.”
Mueller (pictured above left) has sought Trump’s testimony for months on a number of topics, including allegations of collusion between Trump campaign aides and Russian interests, along with accusations of obstruction of justice in the May 2017 firing of former FBI Director James Comey.
Although Trump has insisted on multiple occasions that he wants to sit down with Mueller and clear his name, his attorneys have sternly and repeatedly warned against the dangers of doing so, citing concerns of a perjury trap.
“Now that’s not to say that something couldn’t be arranged,” Sekulow said, although he warned that the chances for a Trump-Mueller interview were slim.
“I can assure you this tonight: This legal team is not walking this president toward a perjury trap — not going to happen,” Sekulow said. “If there’s any type of interview, whether it’s written or otherwise, it will be the appropriate type of response.”
Sekulow said that no self-respecting lawyer would allow his or her client to walk into a perjury trap “in light of everything that’s transpired and continues to transpire.”
Trump’s lawyer particularly emphasized the anti-Trump bias exhibited in key FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) officials, including FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok. He participated in both Mueller’s probe and the FBI’s investigation of 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server to conduct official business while secretary of state.
Mueller removed Strzok from the Russia collusion probe after his anti-Trump and pro-Clinton text messages with former FBI lawyer Lisa Page came to light.
Sekulow also condemned the FBI’s use of the anti-Trump dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele and funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC). The bureau used it to renew Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants against former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.
“I think that anything going forward here has to keep all of that in context and in mind before we agree to do anything,” Sekulow said.
“And, right now, the fact is … if you lined up a hundred lawyers, there’s a hundred lawyers who would say don’t sit for an interview. There’s a reason for that — not just the perjury issue, but the fact that you would ask questions potentially of the president regarding Article II powers?” Sekulow added. “The answer to that is no.”
Sekulow warned that “the hurdle” is “very high” for Mueller to clear before Trump’s lawyers would allow him to question the president about his Article II powers. But if Trump’s lawyers ultimately reject an interview with Mueller and the special counsel issues a subpoena, Sekulow insisted that “We are ready to go to court if we have to.”
“Do I think we’re going to have to? I don’t think so. If we do, we’ll do it,” Sekulow said. “I mean, look — you’ve got to protect not just this president, but the presidency. That’s what’s at stake here.”
“The idea that — could you imagine? Every U.S. attorney that had an issue with the president of the United States could issue a subpoena for that president to testify?” Sekulow continued. “Now the founders knew that wouldn’t work, and that’s why they structured three branches of government and separation of powers.”