US President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, won’t be a part of the Republican leader’s defence team for the upcoming impeachment trial in the Senate. While speaking to The Hill, Giuliani said that as he could be called as a witness, the rules of legal ethics would prohibit him from representing the President as trial counsel in the impeachment trial. The outgoing President is charged with “incitement of insurrection” over the mob siege of the Capitol on January 6 and Giuliani would not be a part of Trump’s defence due to his involvement in the rally that preceded the riots.
Now, it is unclear who will be a defence lawyer for Trump, given that several attorneys have privately said that they won’t represent him. Giuliani himself at first said that he was taking part in the trial and then a day later, he said that he had no involvement. He previously had also told ABC News that he would not be part of the defence noting that he is a potential witness since he gave a speech at the rally.
Trump refuses to pay legal fees to Giuliani
Giuliani has played a crucial role in Trump’s attempt to overturn the results of the Presidential Election by filing several legal cases in courts on his behalf and spearheading a parallel media campaign that has, nonetheless, borne no fruit and failed abjectly, with Guiliani also testing positive for COVID in the process apart from making a mockery of himself. His statement to not represent Trump comes after the outgoing President sidelined the former New York mayor by refusing to pay his legal bills.
Reports suggest that President Trump’s relations with Giuliani have drastically changed as he has asked his aides not to pay Giuliani’s pending fees because the lawyer demanded $20,000 a day. However, no confirmation has been received from Giuliani or The White House as of now. Trump is also reportedly unhappy with members of his inner circle as he feels they have failed to defend him following last week’s US Capitol siege. There has largely been silence following Wednesday’s vote in the House of Representatives to impeach the President for a second time.
Following the January 6 incident, many Republican leaders have also called for Trump’s resignation, accusing the President of descending into “madness” over his incitement of a mob of supporters. Leaders including Pennsylvania’s Republican Senator Pat Toomey, Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski, and Senate Republican Ben Sasse have slammed the President for encouraging the insurrection. They have said that they would consider any article of impeachment because the President “disregarded his oath of office”.