Donald Trump's lead lawyer for federal Russia probe resigns


"I love the president and wish him very well", Dowd told NBC News after the first reports of his resignation surfaced.

Over the weekend Dowd called on the deputy attorney general to bring an end to Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russian Federation probe.

The president's pronouncement comes after the sudden resignation of John Dowd, his top lawyer who was leading Trump's handling of the Mueller probe.

In what could be a factor in Dowd's retirement, the New York Times reported that Trump met with Washington lawyer Emmet T. Flood, who represented former President Bill Clinton during his impeachment, about taking over as the lead lawyer in the Mueller probe.

The president, in response to reporters' questions, affirmed that he still wants to go before the special counsel.

Dowd and Jay Sekulow, who also represents Trump in the Russian Federation probe, have been in negotiations in recent weeks over a possible interview for Trump with special counsel Robert Mueller, people familiar with the matter have told Reuters.

He's also incredibly frustrated with Trump.

John Dowd reportedly concluded the President was increasingly ignoring his advice.

The appointment of diGenova, who himself has offered strong rebukes of the Mueller investigation, likely signals a more aggressive push by Trump's legal team that had once pledged full cooperation with Mueller's investigators.

He has also privately insisted he should sit for an interview with the special counsel's office, even though Dowd believed it was a bad idea.

Over the weekend, Dowd issued a statement calling for an end to special counsel's investigation.

Dowd had opposed Trump's desire to be interviewed by Mueller.

However, CNN is now reporting that Trump isn't sure diGenova and his wife, fellow lawyer and Fox News regular Victoria Toensing, are the right people for the job after meeting with them just once.

Dowd also has played a role in some of the defining legal quagmires of the past four decades, including the Iran-Contra affair, the Keating Five, the Enron collapse and a scandal over the firing of USA attorneys.

Jens David Ohlin, a vice dean at Cornell Law School who's an expert on criminal law, said Trump's legal team consisted of "two camps". The article reports that, in recent weeks, Dowd had "disagreed vehemently with Trump over a legal strategy". See, if Dowd didn't really write the tweet, and Mueller asked him about it, he'd have to either lie to the Special Counsel to protect his client, or tell the truth and incriminate him.