Trump having trouble finding lawyer

Washington Post sez Trump is having trouble finding lawyers to defend him on his many potential legal issues:


  1. Trump stiffs everyone, including his lawyers.
  2. Trump doesn’t take advice to keep his yap shut.
  3. Trump’s cases are so complicated it would be a full-time job, maybe for a year or two, with no other file to bring in income.
  4. Did we mention that Trump stiffs everyone?
  5. If you work for Trump, you’re tainted forever, and your firm may have trouble attracting clients who either don’t like Trump, or don’t want to be associated with Trump, even through a law firm.

Currently, his search team for top-flight lawyers includes a former campaign adviser, Boris Epshteyn, former White House aide Kash Patel, attorney Christina Bobb (former OAN commentator), Florida lawyer Lindsey Halligan (called to the bar in 2014 and previously did insurance work), and Alina Habba (New Jersey lawyer who was general counsel for a parking garage company).

They’re looking for top lawyers with criminal law experience in the federal courts and Georgia, but apparently no-one’s returning their calls.

I suspect there might also be:

  1. Lawyers are worried that getting involved in Trump’s legal issues might cause legal problems for them as well.

What do you do if your client, for example, tells you he’s planning on lying under oath? Or plans on knowingly making false statements in a deposition?

You drop the file, immediately. You tell your client, and the reason why–basically, you don’t want to be implicated with anybody like that, who might compromise your own professional ethics, so you get away.

I’m reminded of my ex-wife who was a medical professional. She had an professional and ethical obligation to help anybody who was in medical distress, no matter where or when. She had a hard time believing (though she eventually did) that I had no obligation to accept clients who needed help.

(Note that IAAL.)

Right, like he tells you that he’s delivered all the classified docs to the Archives, so it’s okay for you to sign a letter to that effect?

(I wasn’t trying to be exhaustive in my list of why it’s bad, bad, bad to be Trump’s lawyer. :smile: Maybe Becks can do that. Oh, @Beckdawrek …)

If actually charged with a criminal offense could he get a public defender even though he has the means to pay? Could the ACLU represent him on the grounds that even a low life disgusting slimeball cheat that no lawyer wants to represent deserves legal representation?

I wouldn’t have thought so; if you’ve got money to pay for a lawyer, why should the public shill out for you? Isn’t that how it works in the US?

Part of what he’s likely facing is that lawyers are afraid working for him will drag them down into unethical behaviour. No lawyer has an obligation to work for a client who won’t take counsel’s advice.

So a legit law firm could just require him to put up a very large retainer before taking his case correct? Like a half a billion dollar retainer. Something he just doesn’t want to do.

He can’t just tell a judge he cannot get counsel without trying something like that first I would think. If still no one would represent him could a judge use that as grounds to have him evaulated for a mental condition? Like being a pathological liar that no lawyer in the country can defend.

More like something he’d want to force the RNC to do, and they really can’t because, surprise surprise, the rubes base will donate instead to what they think are “defense funds” directly under him but which are just grifts.

And then what happens? You get sued by Trump. Instead of collecting your fees from him, you end up having to spend money to fight him in court.

Plus Trump tells all of his followers that he’s innocent, you’re the liar, and that somebody should use a “second amendment solution” on you.

It’s very unlikely he would do this, yes, but if he gets desperate enough, he might have to.

And that could be incentive for him to follow counsel’s advice. The retainer agreement could say: “If you give us cause to drop you as a client, we keep whatever’s left.”

He’d sue about that provision if it ever was enforced. If he could get a lawyer to represent him in such a case, that is.

Is my understanding that he stiffs his lawyers if he loses the case, correct?

I’d think the half-bill would necessarily be in actual MONEY. No property deeds, no cryptocurrency, no titles, even a bank draft or check would be suspect.

No jewelry, no artwork, no treasure maps where X marks the spot.

I doubt a bail bondsman or pawn shop would accept any personal property from Trump.

He might have to get a public defender. But you can bet that lawyer will send out bills!


“Mr. Trump, I can’t help but notice that this silverware has ‘Property of the White House’ stamped on it.”

No. Public defenders are for those who are unable to pay.

Something he may not be able to do - it’s questionable how much money he has.

Not sure what the legal system does with someone who too much money to qualify for a public defender but who also can not convince a private attorney to work for him.

I can’t speak to how it’s done at the federal level, but at the state level, the judge will appoint a public defender so as to get the case moving along, then sort out the ability-to-pay issue after the fact.

I could see that happening in this case.

IANAL but I would say that, in theory, if somebody could not find a lawyer willing to work for him, the judge would be required to appoint a public defender. Otherwise, you’re denying the accused the right to counsel.

I note that this is only theoretical. With hundreds of thousands of lawyers in this country, I assume any client with money can find one willing to take his case.

He’s been collecting millions in donations to various funds, including legal defense funds. He has the money. Also, I understand the Republican National Committee has been paying some or all of his legal bills since leaving office. They threatened to stop doing that if he declared his candidacy for 2024, which may be the only thing that’s kept him from doing so already.

There’s always a first time for everything.

I suspect if he’s actually charged with a crime, he will be able to find a lawyer, because everyone IS entitled to a defense. Even Trump. The problem he would have would be KEEPING a lawyer, because he seems to be constitutionally::::snerk::: unable to to take advice, especially when the advice involves shutting the fuck up.

But right now, he’s not REALLY looking for a lawyer. He’s looking for cronies with a law degree to help him pull off a series of unnecessary and performative stunts. And he’s kind of burned through the supply of lawyers willing to do this.

At this juncture, I suspect a “legitimate” lawyer would just tell him to shut his pie hole and let the DOJ and FBI do their jobs. Which is advice he would be unwilling to take.

But it’s not just a money issue. As the WaPo article indicates, lawyers are not willing to represent Trump because he’s Trump. Doesn’t take advice, doesn’t keep his mouth shut, and your own professional reputation can suffer from being slimed by association with Trump.

What happens if the judge says “Public defender - granted.”

“Public defender, please.”

“Where are thé public defenders?!?”

Court clerk: « I believe they’re all representing mob bosses and accused hit men, your honour. Better class of client. »