Greetings, The Friday Whine is a casual email to friends and colleagues and contains three things: An ethics update, a legal profession update, and wine recommendation. If you see text in blue, it is a link to an article or information.
Because Our Client Tends To Lie
Representing the President of The United States would appear to be that “career” case for any lawyer. Except for the fact that the attorney/client privilege is almost non-existent. Lawyers know that the privilege belongs to the client, but it intrigues me that in the case of President Trump, every move his lawyers make is set out in the media. Are his meetings with lawyers attended by others? I assume so.
Take for example his lawyers’ (wise) advice that he does not speak to the Special Counsel. President Trump shouldn’t speak to the Special Counsel because no one should voluntarily speak to the government, particularly when they are part of a criminal investigation. President Trump can say that “he” is “not under investigation,” but no one can argue that he isn’t “part” of the investigation.
Why would any experienced, competent lawyer recommend their client speak to a prosecutor voluntarily? In this case, though, the advice and the reason, is for everyone to see. I can’t imagine the lawyers are acting unethically and divulging their advice to the media, but who knows.
In a case like this, where everything gets out, I wonder if the lawyers find themselves in a difficult situation competently representing their client when they know everything they say will be national news. It’s certainly (hopefully) not the lawyers leaking the specificity of their advice.. Must be the client, or his staff telling people “the lawyers think I’m a liar.”
What A Government Shutdown Means To Government Lawyers
The government was shut down last night for a few hours, not enough time to cause the media to start posting interviews with people upset they couldn’t get into Yellowstone National Park. More and more it appears that a government shutdown is nothing more than the closing of national parks – although there is much more to it. We know that “non-essential government employees are told to stay home (which always leads to the question “why do we have non-essential people working for the government), but what happens to government lawyers?
Federal prosecutors keep working. Civil attorneys at the Department of Justice do not. Federal Judges do.
Here’s probably more than you want to know about the details of how the legal profession is affected by a government shutdown, for the next time.
The Gratuitous Valentines Day Cheap Champagne Recommendation
Graham Beck Brut Rose. $17.99.
It’s at Sunset Corners in Miami. Total Wine has some other Graham Beck, but not the Brut Rose (usually).