White House Now Referring All Comey Firing Questions to Outside Counsel

All White House press inquiries regarding President Donald Trump’s firing of former FBI director James Comey and related allegations of misconduct will be referred to Trump’s attorney, press secretary Sean Spicer said on Wednesday. Asked at an off-camera press briefing whether Trump had committed obstruction of justice when he fired Comey this month, Spicer demurred. “Going forward, all questions on these matters will be referred to outside counsel, Marc Kasowitz." Spicer’s reply was the first time that the White House has publicly referred such questions to Kasowitz, whom Trump retained last week to handle legal matters involving federal and congressional investigations into alleged Russian election-meddling, the Trump campaign’s communications with Russian government officials, and the potential legal fallout from Comey’s ouster. Kasowitz has represented Trump in a personal and professional capacity for years, including in lawsuits alleging defamation against Trump by journalists and others. Kasowitz was also involved in a fraud lawsuit against Trump University, which was settled in January for $25 million.

—Lachlan Markay