Published: Thu, May 25, 2017
Research | By Chelsea Rogers

Trump reportedly lawyers up as Russian Federation probe mounts

Trump reportedly lawyers up as Russian Federation probe mounts

President Donald Trump is expected to retain lawyer Marc Kasowitz as his private attorney representing him on matters related to the Russian Federation investigation being led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, a source close to Kasowitz and sources familiar with the Trump's decision confirmed to ABC News. In early October, the New York Times reported that Kasowitz had written threatened the newspaper with legal action if it published information about Trump's 1995 income tax returns.

Kasowitz's work on behalf of Trump over the years has included defending Trump University against fraud claims filed by the NY attorney general's office; successfully arguing that a NY judge should keep records sealed related to Trump's 1990 divorce from Ivana Trump; and unsuccessfully suing a reporter who wrote a book about Trump in which he questioned the real-estate mogul's star's net worth.

Marc Kasowitz speaks to reporters after a jury found the New York and New Jersey Port Authority negligent in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, in New York October 26, 2005. The matters range from restructuring work involving a Trump casino to defending him from a defamation claim brought by a former "Apprentice" contestant.

That Trump would turn to Kasowitz is no surprise. The last time that Kasowitz represented Trump was approximately 6 months ago, when 4 women claimed that he sexually harassed them.

The Post said the four spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly.

By retaining Kasowitz, Trump has entrusted a loyal legal mind to help him as the investigation into Russian Federation ratcheted up over the past week.

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A potential complication for Kasowitz is that former senator Joseph Lieberman, Trump's leading candidate to head the Federal Bureau of Investigation, is now a senior counsel at his firm.

Kasowitz and the White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Reuters. A White House official said the administration had no comment.

Kasowitz's appointment would have complicated the possible appointment of former Sen. He's also one of Trump's top picks to replace James Comey, the man who was leading the investigation into Russian meddling in the election. A former partner at the firm, David Friedman, was chosen by Trump as US ambassador to Israel.

That's why a key goal for the outside counsel will be to convince the president to act in his own interests, said Jack Quinn, who served as White House counsel for President Bill Clinton.

Controversy and political drama swirling around the alleged Russian Federation ties have engulfed Trump's presidency from the start, fueling anger within a White House that feels under siege and unfairly scrutinized.

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