Lawyer told Trump he’s going to jail if he testifies to Mueller: Woodward book
© Greg Nash

President TrumpDonald John TrumpA better VA, with mental health services, is essential for America's veterans Pelosi, Nadler tangle on impeachment, contempt vote Trump arrives in Japan to kick off 4-day state visit MORE's former lawyer reportedly told him that sitting down with special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump orders more troops to Mideast amid Iran tensions Trump: Democrats just want Mueller to testify for a 'do-over' Graham: Mueller investigation a 'political rectal exam' MORE would end in prison time for Trump, according to excerpts from journalist Bob Woodward's upcoming book.

In “Fear: Trump in the White House,” the Watergate veteran's book on the Trump presidency, Woodward says that former White House lawyer John Dowd told Trump in March that sitting down with Mueller for an interview, which Trump has been considering for months, would end in perjury charges and imprisonment.

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“Don’t testify. It’s either that or an orange jumpsuit," Dowd told Trump, according to excerpts obtained by The Washington Post, where Woodward is an associate editor.

Trump reportedly pushed back, assuring Dowd that he'd "be a real good witness" in his own defense.

“You are not a good witness,” Dowd replied, according to the excerpts. “Mr. President, I’m afraid I just can’t help you."

Dowd resigned the next day, citing differences of opinion over the direction of the president's defense in Mueller's investigation into Russian election interference.

“I love the President and I wish him well,” Dowd said in a written statement to The Hill in March.

The book also claims that Dowd previously expressed his concerns to Mueller and his deputy, James Quarles, over whether the special counsel office would leak transcripts of a potential meeting between the president and the special counsel.

Dowd, Woodward reports, was suspicious that the transcripts would intentionally be leaked to hurt Trump politically.

“I’m not going to sit there and let him look like an idiot. And you publish that transcript, because everything leaks in Washington, and the guys overseas are going to say, ‘I told you he was an idiot. I told you he was a goddamn dumbbell. What are we dealing with this idiot for?’ ” Dowd reportedly said.

"John, I understand," Mueller replied, according to Woodward.

Trump has frequently attacked the special counsel probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election in recent weeks and has publicly called for Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsFive takeaways from Barr's new powers in 'spying' probe Amash: Some of Trump's actions 'were inherently corrupt' 'Persuadable' voters are key to the 2020 election — and the non-screaming news industry MORE to shut down the investigation.

Woodward's upcoming book is set for release on Sept. 11.