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White House

Trump's Russia attorney Flood to become White House counsel temporarily

Key Points
  • The White House says the attorney representing President Donald Trump in the Russia investigation is shifting roles and taking on duties as counsel to the president.
  • Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says Thursday that Emmet Flood will temporarily serve as White House counsel. That's until another attorney, Pat Cipollone, officially comes on board in that role.
  • Cipollone is awaiting completion of his background investigation.
White House counsel Don McGahn looks on as President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018, in Washington.
Evan Vucci | AP

The White House says the attorney representing President Donald Trump in the Russia investigation is shifting roles and taking on duties as counsel to the president.

Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says Thursday that Emmet Flood will temporarily serve as White House counsel. That's until another attorney, Pat Cipollone, officially comes on board in that role.

At that time, Sanders says Flood will return to his role as special counsel representing Trump in the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Sanders says Trump has "a great deal of respect" for both attorneys and is glad to have them on his team.

Cipollone will succeed Don McGahn, whose final day as White House counsel was Wednesday.

Cipollone is awaiting completion of his background investigation.

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Key Points
  • Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein characterized the special counsel investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 elections as "appropriate and independent" in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.
  • His comments distance him from President Donald Trump, who has frequently derided the investigation led by Robert Mueller as a baseless "witch hunt."
  • Rosenstein also reaffirmed his commitment to his job amid reports that he planned to resign last month.