A report Sunday night by Axios details a high level of anxiety inside the White House over the possibility of Donald Trump being interviewed by Robert Mueller & team. Axios called it the “Perjury Panic.” This all began when Trump told the New York Times that he was “willing and eager” to submit to an interview. Cue deep groan by White House staff. Why? White House insiders point to a story from Bloomberg by Timothy O’Brien headlined “I’ve Watched Trump Testify Under Oath. It Isn’t Pretty.”
O’Brien wrote a book called “Trump Nation” back in 2006. Trump sued O’Brien for libel. But it’s what happened at the deposition that has caught the attention of White House advisors. O’Brien writes:
“My attorney was Mary Jo White, a former federal prosecutor steeped in many of the same legal traditions and courtroom experiences as Mueller. It didn’t go well for the future president.
“Hammered by White and her deputies, Trump ultimately had to admit 30 times that he had lied over the years about all sorts of stuff: how much of a big Manhattan real estate project he owned; the price of one of his golf club memberships; the size of the Trump Organization; his wealth; his speaking fees; how many condos he had sold; his debts, and whether he borrowed money from his family to avoid going personally bankrupt. He also lied during the deposition about his business dealings with career criminals.”
Trump eventually lost the suit. And despite the bluster and bravado in his interview with The Times, it was Trump’s attorney who claims he’ll have the final say. John Dowd told CNN: “I will make the decision on whether the President talks to the special counsel… I have not made any decision yet.”