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Former President Donald Trump’s attorney Jim Trusty, who withdrew from representing Trump in a pair of federal criminal probes last week, pulled out of yet another Trump legal matter Friday, citing “irreconcilable differences” with the former president.
In a filing with the U.S. District Court of Southern Florida, Trusty indicated his intention to withdraw from Trump’s pending defamation lawsuit against CNN. The longshot lawsuit, which Trump filed last October, accuses the network of maligning him as a “‘racist,’ ‘Russian lackey,’ ‘insurrectionist,’ and ultimately ‘Hitler.’”
“Mr. Trusty’s withdrawal is based upon irreconcilable differences between Counsel and Plaintiff and Counsel can no longer effectively and properly represent Plaintiff,” Trusty wrote in the filing, which he signed.
The move follows Trusty’s decision, along with Trump attorney John Rowley, to resign from Trump’s legal team shortly after he was indicted by a Florida grand jury for stashing military secrets at his Mar-a-Lago estate. The two lawyers issued a joint statement that made no mention of “irreconcilable differences.”
“Now that the case has been filed in Miami, this is a logical moment for us to step aside and let others carry the cases through to completion,” they wrote last week. “We have no plans to hold media appearances that address our withdrawals or any other confidential communications we’ve had with the President or his legal team.”
Trusty did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Friday.
A Trump campaign spokesperson said: "The defamation lawsuit against CNN is entering a new phase, as more irrefutable facts are revealed. We thank Mr. Trusty for his work on this case and wish him all the best.”
The filing, however, arrives at a sensitive moment in Trump’s legal battles. He’s seeking additional representation to defend him against the 37-count indictment for “willful retention” of national security records at his home, as well as allegedly obstructing efforts by the government to reclaim those records.
Trump appeared at his arraignment Tuesday with attorneys Todd Blanche and Christopher Kise, but he’s expected to add an additional firm as the proceedings get underway.