It's getting tougher for Trump to find new lawyers to defend him in the Russia investigation

  • President Donald Trump has been rejected by another set of attorneys he reached out to about joining his legal-defense team in the Russia investigation.
  • The lawyers, Tom Buchanan and Dan Webb, said "business conflicts" will prevent them from representing the president, multiple news outlets reported on Monday night.
  • One lawyer that Trump lined up last week has had to back out as well, citing similar reasons. Trump lost John Dowd, the top attorney on his Russia investigation team, last week.

President Donald Trump has reportedly been turned down by a new set of attorneys as he seeks to bolster his legal-defense team in the Russia investigation.

The lawyers, Tom Buchanan and Dan Webb, of the law firm Winston & Strawn declined Trump's invitation, citing "business conflicts," multiple news outlets reported on Monday night.

A spokeswoman for the firm said in a statement that Buchanan and Webb consider the opportunity to represent the president "the highest honor and they sincerely regret that they cannot do so."

The statement continued: "They wish the president the best and believe he has excellent representation in Ty Cobb and Jay Sekulow," the primary attorneys on Trump's current legal team.

Joseph diGenova, an attorney that Trump indicated he would hire last week has also had to back out, because he and his wife and law-firm partner, Victoria Toensing, currently represent other parties involved in the Russia investigation.

Notable people who have been fired or resigned from Trump's administration
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Notable people who have been fired or resigned from Trump's administration

U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis

(REUTERS/Leah Millis)

Attorney General Jeff Sessions

(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

White House Communications Director Hope Hicks reportedly announced her resignation after testifying about her job and being required to tell "white lies."

(Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired by President Trump in March 2018.

(Joshua Roberts/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

White House aide Omarosa Manigault insists she resigned and was not fired from her role in December 2017.

(Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt resigned from his position on July 5, 2018 after a number of ethics scandals.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Sally Yates was fired from her post as acting attorney general when she refused to enforce President Trump's travel ban. 

(Photo by Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Rob Porter resigned as White House staff secretary in February 2018 amid abuse allegations made by his ex-wives.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

White House Counsel Don McGahn

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

H.R. McMaster was replaced by John Bolton as national security advisor in March 2018.

(Photo by Kevin Dietsch-Pool/Getty Images)

White House aide Kelly Sadler left her position in June 2018 after reportedly mocking Sen. John McCain.

(REUTERS/Leah Millis)

Director of the National Economic Council Gary Cohn announced his resignation in March 2018 after becoming a key architect of the 2017 tax overhaul 

(REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein)

Michael Flynn resigned as national security adviser in February after misleading Vice President Mike Pence about his interactions with Russian officials. 

(REUTERS/Carlos Barria)

President Trump announced David Shulkin was out as secretary of veterans affairs by sending a tweet announcing he had nominated his personal physican, Ronny Jackson, to replace him on March 28, 2018.

(Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Trump fired FBI Director James Comey in early May.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer resigned in July.

(June 20, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Former White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus resigned in July.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

Former advisor to President Donald Trump Steve Bannon resigned in August.

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Anthony Scaramucci, former White House communications director was fired in July after just 10 days on the job. 

(Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Trump fired Deputy Chief of Staff Katie Walsh amid White House leaks in April.

(REUTERS/Carlos Barria/Files)

Former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price resigned in late September. 

(Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

President Trump fired U.S. Attorney in Manhattan Preet Bharara in March.

(REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein)

Mike Dubke resigned as White House communications director in late May.

(Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Walter Shaub, former Director of the United States Office of Government Ethics in Washington, DC resigned in July.

(Photo Linda Davidson/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

White House deputy assistant Sebastian Gorka resigned in August 2017. 

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

Rick Dearborn, White House Deputy Chief of Staff for Legislative Affairs, left the White House in December 2017.

(REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein)


In the world of high-profile legal cases, conflicts of interest, if not addressed early, can be devastating on multiple fronts. Because of this, an acute awareness of such an issue is necessary.

"In conflict-of-interest theory, it is not only the reality of a conflict of interest, but also an appearance of one, that is considered undesirable," said Beth Nolan, the general counsel of George Washington University.

Trump lost his top attorney in the Russia probe last week. The lawyer, John Dowd, had only days earlier called for special counsel Robert Mueller to end the investigation into Russia's meddling in the 2016 US election. Shortly after he resigned, Dowd said he wants Mueller to interview him.

Experts have suggested that Trump is a difficult client, who has a tendency to go his own way and speak freely about legal matters.

Former federal prosecutor Peter Zeidenberg told Business Insider's Sonam Sheth last week that the behavior, among other challenges, creates an environment in which there are "too many conflicting power centers" on Trump's defense team.

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SEE ALSO: Trump backtracks, decides not to hire 2 controversial lawyers to represent him in the Russia probe

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