Here’s The Timeline Of Changes
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Two attorneys representing former President Donald Trump in the Department of Justice’s probe into his handling of classified documents abruptly quit Friday, CNBC and Politico reported, less than a day after Trump was indicted on seven criminal charges, though the 2024 Republican presidential candidate has not publicly acknowledged the latest shakeup to his legal team.


June 9Attorneys John Rowley and Jim Trusty said they will no longer represent Trump in either the classified documents case or an ongoing Justice Department investigation into his role in the January 6 insurrection, though did not provide a reason for their departure other than to call it a “logical moment” to leave Trump’s legal team, according to a joint statement obtained by CNBC and Politico (Forbes has reached out to Rowley and Trusty).

May 17Attorney Tim Parlatore—who also represented Trump in Justice Department Special Counsel Jack Smith’s investigation into whether Trump mishandled classified White House documents after leaving office—resigned from Trump’s legal team, calling the move “personal” and not a reflection of his “belief in the strength of the case,” CNN and Politico reported.

February 16, 2021Trump cut ties with personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, as the former New York City mayor faced multiple lawsuits over his alleged role in efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election, including one filed against Trump and Giuliani—Giuliani had been instrumental in Trump’s unsuccessful bid to challenge the results of President Joe Biden’s win in court.

January 31, 2021Trump’s lead impeachment lawyers abruptly resigned ahead of the former president’s impeachment trial over allegations he incited the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol, reportedly leaving because of Trump’s repeated and debunked claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election.

January 5, 2021Attorney Cleta Mitchell resigned from the law firm Foley & Lardner where she was a partner after she spoke on a call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) in which the former president famously asked Raffensperger to “find” votes to overturn Biden’s victory in the state—Mitchell claimed she resigned due to “brazen attacks on conservatives and, most especially, anyone who supports and wants to help President Trump.”

November 22, 2020Trump fired far-right attorney Sidney Powell, Giuliani announced in a statement, saying tersely that Powell is “not a member of the Trump Legal Team,” after she doubled-down on baseless election fraud theories and vowed to “release the kraken of evidence”—Powell was later sued by Dominion Voting Systems and voting machine company Smartmatic for spreading false claims about their machines, though she told Forbes the suits against her have “no basis in fact or law.”

November 16, 2020Three of Trump’s campaign lawyers representing him in a suit to block Pennsylvania’s election certification—Bryan Hughes, Linda Kerns and John Scott—withdrew from the case, saying they “reached a mutual agreement” that Trump’s campaign “will be best served” without them on his legal team.

November 13, 2020Two other Trump campaign lawyers with the firm Porter Wright Morris & Arthur withdrew from the same case, while firm Snell & Wilmer withdrew from another case representing the Republican National Committee in the Trump campaign’s lawsuit over allegations poll workers in Arizona’s Maricopa County disenfranchised voters.

Surprising Fact

Trusty and Rowley’s statement on their resignation came just minutes after Trump wrote on his social media platform Truth Social that he will instead be represented in the case by attorney Todd Blanche—who also represents him in a separate Manhattan Criminal Court case over alleged hush money payments sent to a porn star and others before the 2016 presidential election—as well as a “firm to be named later.” Trump thanked Rowley and Trusty in the post, but said “they were up against a very dishonest, corrupt, evil and ‘sick’ group of people, the likes of which has not been seen before.”

Crucial Quote

In their statement, Rowley and Trusty said it was an “honor to have spent the last year defending [Trump],” and that they believe he “will be vindicated in his battle against the Biden Administration’s partisan weaponization of the American justice system”—reiterating growing GOP criticism of the FBI after its raid of Trump’s Mar-A-Lago estate last August, and of the DOJ for its probes into the former president.

News Peg

Trump announced the indictment in a Truth Social post Thursday night, setting the stage for a hearing in U.S. District Court in Miami on Tuesday, where he’s reported to face judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump-appointed judge. The former president appears to face charges including obstruction and willfully retaining national defense secrets, as well as conspiracy to obstruct justice, CNN and the New York Times reported.

Further Reading

Trump Says He Was Indicted In DOJ Classified Documents Probe (Forbes)

What Crimes Was Trump Charged With In Federal Documents Case? Here’s What We Know—And How Much Prison Time He Could Face (Forbes)

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