Exclusive - Trump worries that Mueller interview could be a 'perjury trap'
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday he was worried that any statements under oath he provides to Special Counsel Robert Mueller could be used to bring perjury charges against him as part of the probe into Russia’s electoral interference.
U.S. President Donald Trump answers a question during an interview with Reuters in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, U.S. August 20, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis
In an interview with Reuters, Trump echoed the concerns of his top lawyer in the probe, Rudy Giuliani, who has warned that any sit-down with Mueller could be a “perjury trap.”
The president expressed fears that investigators could compare his statements with that of others who have testified in the probe, such as former FBI Director James Comey, and that any discrepancies could be used against him.
“Even if I am telling the truth, that makes me a liar,” Trump said. “That’s no good.”
Despite his concerns, Trump did not comment on whether he would ultimately agree to an interview with Mueller, who is, among other things, investigating whether Trump’s campaign team colluded with Russians during the 2016 election and whether Trump has obstructed justice in the probe.
Trump also declined to say whether he might strip Mueller of his security clearance, as he did last week to former CIA Director John Brennan, who had repeatedly criticized Trump’s handling of foreign policy and national security issues.
Russia has denied interfering in the 2016 U.S. election and Trump has denied any collusion took place.
Reporting by James Oliphant, Steve Holland and Jeff Mason; Editing by Peter Cooney
Source: Reuters Latest News