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Giuliani’s conversations with Manafort’s lawyers aren’t privileged — and he could be subpoenaed: legal experts

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The conversations between lawyers for Donald Trump and his former campaign manager Paul Manafort would not be covered by attorney-client privilege — and the president’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani could be forced to appear before a grand jury because of it.

NBC News reported that cooperation between the president’s legal team and that of his indicted former campaign manager could amount to obstruction of justice depending on what was discussed.

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If Manafort’s lawyers revealed confidential information related to his cooperation with special counsel Robert Mueller or if Trump’s team dangled the prospect of a pardon before him, it could be considered witness tampering, legal experts who spoke to NBC said.

Under typical rules, the report noted, a joint defense agreement like that which Giuliani revealed to multiple news agencies earlier in the week would be protected by attorney client-privilege.

However, experts who spoke to NBC said “a joint defense agreement can only exist between people who have a common legal interest” — and that common legal interest evaporated when Manafort began cooperating with Mueller in his investigation of Trump.

“When former national security adviser Michael Flynn flipped,” NBC noted, “he notified Trump’s lawyers that he was withdrawing from their joint defense agreement.”

Former U.S. attorneys Joyce Vance and Mimi Rocah, both NBC analysts, agreed that Trump and Manafort no longer had a shared legal interest once the former campaign manager began cooperating with the special counsel.

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“If I were Mueller I would be issuing subpoenas today to Rudy Giuliani and [Manafort’s attorney] Kevin Downing, and anyone else involved in those communications, so they would have to explain under oath exactly what was conveyed,” Vance said.

She added that the situation is highly unusual and troubling.

“The whole idea that we are talking about a president having a joint defense agreement with 32 other people — because they are all under criminal investigation — is not normal, and we can’t let it become normal,” Vance said.

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Pompeo ridiculed by CNN panel for his ‘phony mock outrage’ response after being outed as a foul-mouthed bully

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Responding to a statement from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued through the State Department accusing an NPR journalist of being "shameless" for going public with an encounter she had with him in his offices where he cursed at her, a CNN panel all but rolled their eyes at his "phony" outrage.

Speaking with host Anderson Cooper, CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin called out the blustery Pompeo as well as many Republicans who took "umbrage" at Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) mentioning a report that the Donald Trump would have their heads on "on a pike" if they crossed him.

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So much for ‘originalism’ — Trump’s impeachment defense is a constitutional dumpster fire

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In the absence of any exculpatory evidence, Donald Trump's defense against impeachment increasingly relies on arguments that fly directly in the face of the Constitution. Trump himself set the standard last July with his grandiose claim that "Article II says I can do anything I want," which encountered no serious pushback from his fellow Republicans.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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Trump lawyer Purpura busted by MSNBC for lying on the Senate floor during impeachment trial

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Moments after the end of the Saturday's Senate impeachment trial of Donald Trump concluded, MSNBC host Brian Williams pointed out that one of Donald Trump's attorney's lied on the Senate floor about the president's Ukraine scandal-- and he had a clip handy to prove it.

Sharing footage of attorney Mike Purpura stating the higher-ups in Ukraine were unaware that Donald Trump was withholding aid until after the government helped him by announcing an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden, the MSNBC host called the attorney out.

To make his point that Pupura was being untruthful, Williams then showed a clip of Defense Department official Laura Cooper, who testified that Ukrainians were asking about the delay on the day of the Trump phone call that was the starting point of the impeachment trial.

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