President Donald Trump’s legal team is preparing answers to questions from special counsel Robert Mueller — capping months of negotiations and signaling the Russia investigation may be in its final phase, CNN reported Thursday.
Citing unnamed sources, CNN reported the questions focus on matters related to the investigation of possible collusion between Trump associates and Russians trying to meddle in the 2016 election.
According to CNN, Trump's legal team is preparing written responses, in part relying on documents previously provided to the special counsel.
"We are in continuing discussions with the special counsel and we do not comment on those discussions," Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow told the news outlet.
According to CNN, even with the answers readied, more questions could come from the Mueller team, which has pressed for a chance for follow-up queries. The first round of questions was agreed upon after "prolonged back-and-forth over months," CNN’s Dana Bash, Gloria Borger and Evan Perez reported.
There's still no agreement, however on whether Trump will be grilled in person by investigators looking into whether the president obstructed justice by firing James Comey as FBI director in May 2017.
"It seems ridiculous that I'd have to do it when everybody says there's no collusion, but I'll do what is necessary to get it over with," Trump said of a sit-down during a phone interview on Thursday morning's "Fox & Friends."
Talks aimed at a sit-down with the president lasted for most a year, CNN noted — and came to a near-agreement last January for an interview at Camp David in rural Maryland.
When the plan fell through, however, a spate of letters and meetings followed — all aimed at limiting any potential testimony from Trump, CNN reported. On Mueller's side, it was reported the special prosecutor was mulling a possible subpoena to compel the president's testimony, CNN reported.
But wth the hiring of Rudy Giuliani to the president's legal team, the issue was argued more on the airwaves — and with more aggressiveness, CNN noted, as New York City’s former mayor aggressively defended Trump and attacked Mueller.
Trump's other lawyers, meanwhile, Jane and Marty Raskin, were working behind the scenes with Mueller's team to narrow the topics that Trump could be asked about, according to CNN.
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