There is a lot of trouble inside Team Trump. According to a new investigative report from The Daily Beast, paranoia, disgust, and looking for an escape hatch seem to be the predominant thoughts on the mind of the former President’s legal team. And much of it centers around Trump’s most trusted advisor these days, Boris Epshteyn.
Epshteyn’s relationship with Trump begins with the 2016 campaign. There, he was one of his campaign advisors. Then in 2020, he became one of his “top” campaign advisors. Now, it seems he is the top advisor on Team Trump, similar to a gatekeeping Chief of Staff.
Other lawyers, at least some of them, trying to help Trump with his legal woes, are not exactly fans of Boris Epshteyn and his style of doing things.
Epshteyn’s meddling has particularly affected the lawyers working to defend Trump from Department of Justice Special Counsel Jack Smith and his investigation into whether the former president broke the law when he took top secret documents on his way out of the White House in January 2021 and hoarded them at Mar-a-Lago.
“Boris pissed off all the Florida lawyers. People are dropping like flies. Everybody hates him. He’s a toxic loser. He’s a complete psycho,” said a second person, who could barely contain their anger while discussing the matter. “He’s got daddy issues, and Trump is his daddy.”
Other lawyers seem to at least roughly share this assessment of Trump’s right-hand-man. According to the report, there was a recent meeting involving Trump and his lawyers that was described as more of an “intervention” rather than a meeting. Apparently, some of the lawyers threatened to leave if Epshteyn didn’t go.
One lawyer, Tim Parlatore, one of the lawyers in the Mar-a-Lago classified documents case, did suddenly leave after that secret “intervention.”
Parlatore then went on CNN and openly criticized Boris Epshteyn like no had done so before. He blamed Epshteyn for doing “everything he could to try to block us, to prevent us from doing what we could to defend the president.”
A Trump spokesperson denied the accusations against the former President, calling them “categorically false.” Other lawyers also had kinder assessments of Epshteyn’s work and said that the lawyers all had Trump’s phone number if they wanted to go around Epshteyn.
But Boris Epshteyn isn’t the only thing causing concern in Team Trump.
33-year-old Lindsey Halligan has been raising eyebrows. To say she is “a relatively inexperienced lawyer” would be an understatement. Halligan suddenly appeared in Trump’s orbit sometime last summer as a vocal advocate on Trump ally Steve Bannon’s “War Room” show. She was allegedly present at Mar-a-Lago during the FBI’s search there in August, and then quickly became involved in Trump’s bumbling lawsuit in October against CNN for comparing Trump to Hitler, and has since been generally involved in his defense against the feds.
Fellow attorneys advising Trump have seriously and seemingly justifiably questioned why she’s on the team, given that the most note worthy case she worked on in her entire career appears to have been 2nd chair to a more senior lawyer defending an insurance company at a short (2 day) trial against three Miami homeowners with damaged roofs. In that case, a judge wouldn’t award her attorney’s fees because he ruled that her team screwed up and didn’t act “in good faith.”
At least two members of Trump’s legal team have remarked that she is only there because of Trump’s penchant for attractive young women.
“It waters down the honor to represent a president. It really does, when you think about it,” one of her colleagues told The Daily Beast.
Some others on the team defended her essentially describing the reports about her looks and experience to be cheap shots and claiming she is a “highly experienced litigating attorney.”
On top of all that is the paranoia. It seems that many of the lawyers think they may have a “snitch” in their ranks. That probably doesn’t make for a smooth exchange of information between the lawyers with all the suspicion.
All of this is coming to light as Trump’s legal worries seem to grow by the day. He is already indicted on 34 counts by the Manhattan D.A. for fake business records and hush money payoffs. He lost a recent civil suit to E. Jean Carroll in about the most embarrassing way possible that exposed him as a sexual predator and liar. Meanwhile, it seems Jack Smith is about to start indicting Trump and/or people around him in the classified documents case as the other case Smith is working on — the one about the January 6th coup attempt, rolls on. Then in Georgia, things seem to be shaping up for more election related indictments by the end of the summer.
The DOJ case is getting so hot, according to the report, that some lawyers have begun to see it as “radioactive” to their career as an attorney. One lawyer on Trump’s team emphatically said, “I have nothing to do with that. I have a law license to protect.” Another stressed they might “slam” the eject button before it gets much worse.
“It’s crazy in there. It really is. I’ve heard there’s a mess coming,” this person said, according to the report.