Comey to Trump lawyers: Be wary of Mueller interview because Trump ‘lies a lot’
Former FBI Director James Comey on Tuesday said that President Trump’s lawyers should be “very thoughtful” before granting special counsel Robert Mueller an interview with the president because their “client is somebody who lies a lot.”
“You’d have to be very thoughtful about that given that your client is somebody who lies a lot,” Comey said in a live interview with The Washington Post.
“That doesn’t mean you don’t do it, and I actually believe as an American it’s very important that a president cooperate,” he continued. “But you’d have to, as a lawyer, be very thoughtful and prepare your client.”
Comey’s comments come as Trump’s legal advisers weigh whether to have the president interview with Mueller’s team, which is investigating possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia and whether the president sought to obstruct the probe.
Trump has in the past said that he was open to speaking with investigators. But his legal team — his former lawyer John Dowd, in particular — has advised caution with such an interview out of concern that it could bait the president into making inconsistent statements.
Comey said that it is important for the president to cooperate with Mueller’s investigation, but acknowledged that such an interview would require significant preparation by Trump’s legal team.
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, one of Trump’s lawyers, said on Sunday in an interview on ABC’s “This Week” that the president wants to speak to investigators, but added that he would “be a fool to testify.”
“I’m facing a situation with the president, and all the other lawyers are, in which every lawyer in America thinks he would be a fool to testify,” Giuliani said.
Trump has repeatedly called Mueller’s probe a “witch hunt” and a “hoax,” and has called on investigators to wrap up their inquiry quickly.
Giuliani also told CBS News on Monday that Mueller had rejected an offer by the president’s lawyers to answer questions in writing.
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