Former U.S. President Donald Trump has revealed in an interview aired on Sunday that he chose to disregard the counsel of his own legal team when continuing to challenge his defeat in the 2020 election. Trump asserted that he did not hold respect for his lawyers and maintained his unfounded belief that the election had been “rigged.”
As the frontrunner for the Republican nomination in the 2024 presidential race, Trump currently faces four simultaneous criminal prosecutions, two of which relate to his efforts to overturn the 2020 election results against Democratic President Joe Biden.
In the interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press” program, Trump declared, “It was my decision” to believe the election had been “rigged” against him, emphasizing that he heavily relied on his own “instincts” to reach this conclusion.
Despite repeated debunking, Trump continues to propagate false claims that the election was stolen from him through widespread voter fraud.
When asked about his dismissal of the opinions of White House and campaign lawyers who advised him that he had lost the election, Trump responded bluntly, stating, “Because I didn’t respect them.”
Trump specifically singled out former U.S. Attorney General William Barr, who had informed him of his election loss, as one of the lawyers whose advice he chose not to heed. Trump remarked, “I listened to some people, like Bill Barr, who was a stiff, but he wasn’t there at the time. But he didn’t do his job because he was afraid.”
It’s worth noting that Trump has pleaded not guilty in all four criminal cases, which include a federal prosecution in Washington and a Georgia state indictment, both related to his attempts to recruit a slate of fictitious electors for the congressional certification of the 2020 election results.
Trump’s statements in this interview could potentially undermine one of his potential legal defenses, suggesting that he acted upon the advice of his legal team when challenging the election results. It’s important to recall that U.S. courts rejected numerous legal challenges brought by Trump’s campaign and supporters following the November 2020 election.
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