Trump hires tough Uranium One lawyer in offensive move and raises eyebrows

As President Trump continues to focus on special counsel Robert Meuller, he has added Uranium-One lawyer Victoria Toensing to his legal team this week.

Toensing’s husband and law partner – and former U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia –  Joe diGenova was also added to represent the president in the Russia probe which Trump has criticized as a “witch hunt.” Toensing is known as the attorney who represented the FBI informant in the Uranium One scandal involving the Clinton Foundation.

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According to Fox News:

Toensing served as deputy assistant attorney general in the criminal division of the Justice Department under the Reagan administration, and as an assistant U.S. attorney in Detroit. Toensing was chief counsel for then-Sen. Barry Goldwater, who sat as chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

DiGenova and Toensing, together, were appointed by the House of Representatives in 1997 as special counsel to investigate the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. The two also were retained to investigate former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer in the Democrat’s political surveillance controversy, also known as Troopergate.

 

Mark Corallo, an ex-spokesman to former Trump attorney Marc Kasowitz, was represented by Toensing in the probe, as was Sam Clovis, a 2016 Trump campaign associate and Erik Prince, a former informal adviser to Trump. But Corallo denied there is any conflict of interest in Toensing’s addition to the legal team.

“I signed a waiver acknowledging I see no potential conflicts with their representation of the President,” Corallo told Fox News on Thursday, explaining it was a “standard” waiver of “potential conflict.

Corallo, Clovis and the president signed a waiver, a source close to the couple told Fox News.

“The conflict is owned by the client. The conflict privilege is owned by the client,” the source told Fox News. “It’s the clients who have the privilege to waive. And the president waived it too.”

Toensing joins Trump’s team following the resignation of the president’s lead attorney John Dowd, who strongly opposed Trump doing an interview with Mueller.

The move is being reported as an offensive strategy by Trump, and shift away from the “go along, get along” days of Dowd.

“The hiring of Toensing would be a sign that Trump wants to flip the script and investigate his investigators,”  Vanity Fair’s Gabriel Sherman wrote in a piece published Thursday. “Appearing on Fox News, Toensing has called for a second special prosecutor to investigate Mueller, the logic being that he was F.B.I. director at the time that the Uranium One acquisition was approved.”

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