Trump on Wednesday said he would be willing to speak with Mueller under oath
On Thursday, Trump's attorney said he would decide
President Donald Trump’s attorney, John Dowd, told CNN on Thursday that he is the one to decide if the President will sit down for an interview with special counsel Robert Mueller’s team.
“I will make the decision on whether the President talks to the special counsel,” Dowd said. “I have not made any decision yet. “
Dowd’s suggestion came a day after Trump’s assertion that he wanted to speak with Mueller, and to do so under oath. It also came on the heels of further comments from Trump’s White House team about the Mueller probe earlier Thursday as negotiations continue for the presidential interview.
If those negotiations break down, Mueller could seek a subpoena to compel wide-ranging testimony from the President before a grand jury.
The overview Trump’s lawyers released Thursday said 20 White House staffers, including eight from the White House counsel’s office, sat for voluntary interviews with investigators as part of what the lawyers said is an “unprecedented” attempt at cooperation with the myriad investigations into potential coordination between Trump’s associates and Russia to influence the 2016 US election.
Sources familiar with the matter told CNN that Mueller had provided Trump’s lawyers with possible interview topics. Among the topics CNN reported that the special counsel listed: more about Trump allegedly asking then-FBI Director James Comey to drop an investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn and more about Trump’s outreach to leaders of the intelligence community about the Russia investigation.
Both Comey and Attorney General Jeff Sessions have been questioned by the special counsel, as have other current and former officials, from Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats to former White House chief of Staff Reince Priebus, per previous CNN reporting.
Comey appeared before the Senate Intelligence Committee in June 2017 for a blockbuster hearing on the Russia investigation and his ouster. After the appearance, Trump said he would be willing to testify under oath about Comey’s claims.
But earlier this month, Trump was less committal, dodging on a question about being interviewed by Mueller and saying, “We’ll see what happens.”
“When they have no collusion, and nobody has found any collusion at any level, it seems unlikely that you’d even have an interview,” Trump said when pressed.
As more developments became public about the progress of the special counsel probe, Trump said Wednesday that he is “looking forward” to speaking with the special counsel.
CNN’s Pamela Brown contributed to this report.