• By The Financial District

Top U.S. Lawyers Shun Trump's Latest Legal Battle

A number of high-powered lawyers who have represented Donald Trump in the past are sitting out his latest legal battle, as the former President prepares to assert executive privilege to block congressional investigators from getting information on the January 6 insurrection, Katelyn Polantz reported for CNN.

Photo Insert: "It's not a 10-foot pole" for law firms distancing themselves from Trump, "it's a 1,000-foot pole," said John Yoo, a University of California at Berkeley law professor.

This has left Trump with a relatively small legal team without a lot of experience litigating issues of executive privilege as he readies for a court fight that could test major issues of presidential authority.

Some go-to attorneys have been spooked by Trump's reputation for sometimes not paying as a client, according to several people familiar with conservative legal circles. Others watched closely as lawyers fled Trump's prior teams, frustrated by him as a client or facing their own ethical predicaments. Others still want themselves and their firms to stay far away from Trump's insistence that the election was stolen.

"It's not a 10-foot pole" for law firms distancing themselves from Trump, "it's a 1,000-foot pole," said John Yoo, a University of California at Berkeley law professor who held a senior Justice Department position in the George W. Bush administration.

More than a half-dozen prominent attorneys who took notable roles in defending Trump or his advisers in the past are not assisting him this round. Those include Jay Sekulow and Ty Cobb, according to sources familiar with Trump's legal effort. And at least four well-known lawyers were repeatedly approached by Trump's team for help in recent weeks -- and said no, a source familiar with the discussions tells CNN.\

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Among the four is William Burck, the white-collar lawyer who represented 11 Trump associates in and after the Mueller investigation. Burck turned Trump down three times in recent months, according to people familiar with the former President's orbit, because he wanted to stay away from how toxic Trump's situation has become after the attempt to overturn the election, the people said.

Government & politics: Politicians, government officials and delegates standing in front of their country flags in a political event in the financial district.

Even longtime Trump law firms like Jones Day announced publicly that they wouldn't be involved in his legal challenges to the election. The three lawyers in addition to Burck who have turned down Trump's entreaties in recent months, one source said, are the conservative heavy-hitters Charles Cooper, Mark Filip, and Paul Clement.

Cooper, a former assistant attorney general with experience in congressional subpoena fights, told CNN he would watch any court fight about Trump and executive privilege "from the bleachers."

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