Speed Reads

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Trump reportedly wants to ignore the advice of his lawyers and talk to Robert Mueller

President Trump may be walking himself down the plank.

CNN reported Wednesday that the president wants to go against the advice of his own lawyers and submit to an interview as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia and obstruction of justice against said investigation. An unnamed source close to the president told CNN that Trump thinks an interview with Mueller won't be all that bad because he genuinely believes in his own innocence, and because he's done plenty of interviews under oath in his life. "[Trump] doesn't realize how high the stakes are," this person told CNN.

Trump's lawyers — and pretty much anyone who has ever spent a significant amount of time around him — think the interview is a really bad idea, because he could make false statements. CNN notes that the president's legal team has not yet received a formal interview request from Mueller, but it has been busy trying to find ways to avoid a sit-down. Perhaps a written interview would do? Or the legal team could restrict the line of questioning. Or maybe Trump could just refuse the interview outright and hope Mueller doesn't issue a subpoena.

After being sued for libel by Trump back in 2007, Bloomberg journalist Tim O'Brien had his lawyers interview Trump under oath during the legal battle. The future president fudged the truth 30 times in a way The Washington Post described as "needless, highly specific, easy to disprove." Trump lost the case.