That is a very serious accusation.
Courtesy of ABC News:
In an exclusive interview with ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos, Trump says McGahn “may have been confused” when he told Mueller that Trump instructed him multiple times to have the acting attorney general remove the special counsel because of perceived conflicts of interest.
“The story on that very simply, No. 1, I was never going to fire Mueller. I never suggested firing Mueller,” Trump told Stephanopoulos.
But when Stephanopoulos pushed back and referenced McGahn’s testimony, Trump was defiant.
“I don’t care what [McGahn] says, it doesn’t matter,” Trump said.
“Why would [McGahn] lie under oath?” Stephanopoulos later asked.
“Because he wanted to make himself look like a good lawyer,” Trump said. “Or he believed it because I would constantly tell anybody that would listen — including you, including the media — that Robert Mueller was conflicted. Robert Mueller had a total conflict of interest.”
“And has to go?” Stephanopoulos followed up.
“I didn’t say that,” Trump insisted.
So here is Trump accusing his former White House counsel of perjuring himself before federal prosecutors.
To his credit, Stephanopolous asked the important follow-up question.
And while Trump ultimately refused to speak to Mueller’s investigators directly about McGahn and other topics, he wasn’t shy about sharing his views with ABC News.
“If you answer these questions to me now,” Stephanopoulos asked, “why not answer them to Robert Mueller under oath?”
“Because they were looking to get us for lies or slight misstatements,” Trump said. “I looked at what happened to people, and it was very unfair. Very, very unfair. Very unfair.”
And here is Trump admitting that he refused to answer questions under oath because he knew they would catch him in a lie, or more likely multiple lies.
When Stephanopolous presses him on this Trump starts to lose it.
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) June 14, 2019
“Wait a minute,” Trump said. “Wait a minute. I did answer questions. I answered them in writing.”
“Not on obstruction,” Stephanopoulos said.
“George, you’re being a little wise guy, OK — which is, you know, typical for you,” Trump shot back. “Just so you understand. Very simple. It’s very simple. There was no crime. There was no collusion. The big thing’s collusion. Now, there’s no collusion. That means they set — it was a setup, in my opinion, and I think it’s going to come out.”
This is amazing!
This is the president of the United States claiming that his former White House counsel lied to federal prosecutors, while also admitting that he did not testify because those same federal prosecutors would have caught HIM lying.
I have to imagine that right now congressional Democrats are scrambling to find some way to get Don McGahn in to testify to them about exactly what happened here.
And after being accused of perjuring himself I would think that McGahn might be much more open to providing that testimony.