One of President Trump’s private attorneys, Jay Sekulow, made the Sunday talk-show rounds and first contradicted a Trump tweet storm that explicitly confirmed that he’s under investigation: “I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt.” Aside from this thinly veiled slam of Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein, and Sekulow’s denial that Trump was actually under investigation, the lawyer’s visit to Fox News is also worth mentioning for its explosive nature.
Host Chris Wallace, who often departs from many of his colleagues when it comes to calling out Trump surrogates, had a ball with this interview. He thoroughly relished the moment when Sekulow — who aimed to convince everyone that his client was mistaken while confirming that he was being investigated — began to admit that … Trump is being investigated? This portion of the transcript is remarkable:
Sekulow: “He takes the action that they also, by the way, recommended. And now he’s being investigated by the Department of Justice. So he’s being investigated for taking the action the attorney general and deputy attorney general recommended him to take by the agency that recommended the determination.”
Wallace: “You’ve now said that he’s being investigated.”
Sekulow: “No, Chris. Let me be crystal clear so you completely understand: We have not received nor are we aware of any investigation of the president of the United States.”
Wallace: “Sir, you’ve just said two times that he’s being investigated.”
At that point, Sekulow began to claim that he had only been speaking in hypothetical form (“legal theory!”), and he began to get shouty while insisting that Trump should never be investigated for firing James Comey because Rosenstein recommended that he do so. This, of course, runs contrary to what Congress was told about the Comey firing process. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Missouri) even told reporters that Rosenstein was informed that Comey would be fired before he sat down to write a memo to justify the termination.
And the clash between Wallace and Sekulow grew truly combative with the latter starting to sputter and wave papers around while Wallace fired back with precision — and won. Sekulow kept insisting that Trump’s tweet only referred to the Washington Post story about Trump being investigated for obstruction of justice, which led to some sort of Trump misunderstanding. He then argued for several minutes about how Wallace supposedly “rephrased” his words. At 5:30, Sekulow began trashing James Comey for leaks, and then POTUS’ private attorney said something hilarious: “I’m not the client’s conscience! I’m his lawyer.” What a disaster.
We’re not going to see Sekulow on talk shows anymore, right?