As a House select committee investigates the Capitol insurrection, former president Donald Trump's attorneys are widely expected to argue in court that "executive privilege" prevents administration officials from testifying and documents from being turned over.
However, one former high-ranking federal prosecutor said Friday he believes judges will ultimately reject many of Trump's "executive privilege" claims.
Elliot Williams, a CNN legal analyst who served as deputy assistant attorney general in the Department of Justice, explained that presidents should enjoy executive privilege, so they can have candid conversations with advisers without being sued or subpoenaed every time.
However, Williams said Trump faces two major obstacles when it comes to arguing executive privilege in response to subpoenas from the House select committee investigating the insurrection.
"The problem here for former President Trump is that, No. 1, a lot of these communications were in the capacity of him as candidate Trump, not president Trump, and those just aren't going to be protected communications," Williams said. "And No. 2, it can't be a shield for wrongdoing. You can't tell your lawyer you're going to commit a crime, and then say that those are privileged communications. It's the same thing here. He can't have had conversations that teed up wrongdoing, and then claim that he's hiding behind a privilege. So he can make the argument — it's going to be really tricky — because it's hard legally to separate the man from the candidate from the president, but that's going to happen in the courts over the next couple of weeks."
Elliot Williams on Trump's 'executive privelege' www.youtube.com