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Trumpworld has set out on a hiring spree of defense lawyers to protect them from future scandal as over a dozen people with ties to the administration face questioning related to Russia probes.

Expand chart

Diagram: Lazaro Gamio / Axios

Why it matters: The number of outside counsel hired in relation to the Russia probes reflects the size of the investigations and how seriously White House officials are taking them.

President Donald Trump
  • Mark Kasowitz: He has represented Trump for more than 15 years and is Trump's go-to guy and the lead lawyer on the president's outside legal team for the Russia investigation.
  • Jay Sekulow: Chief counsel for the conservative American Center for Law and Justice, he has grown famous for his work with the religious-right. Now he's Trump's TV lawyer.
  • John Dowd: The former Marine Corps captain is a well-known name in DC. He is perhaps best known for helping clear Sen. John McCain of any wrongdoing in a congressional ethics banking case, known as the "Keating Five."
  • Michael Bowe: A partner at Kasowitz's firm, he's described by the NY team as the "consummate on-your-feet courtroom lawyer."
Vice President Mike Pence
  • Richard Cullen: A former U.S. attorney, specializes in criminal defense and was a member of George W. Bush's legal team for the 2000 election recount in Florida. He's also had his fair share of high-profile clients, including former Texas Rep. Tom Delay and Tiger Woods' ex-wife.
Jared Kushner
  • Abbe Lowell: Lowell is most famously known for serving as the Democrats' Chief Minority Counsel during the impeachment of Bill Clinton.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions
  • Charles Cooper: Cooper, a longtime Sessions friend, used to work as an assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal counsel in Ronald Reagan's Justice Department.
Trump's longtime business lawyer, Michael Cohen
  • Stephen Ryan: Ryan, a former federal prosecutor and a current partner at Washington firm McDermott, Will & Emery, and specializes in "the combined legal, political and press related challenges stemming from congressional oversight and investigation."
Ex-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn
  • Robert Kelner: Kelner chairs the Election and Political Law Practice at D.C.'s Covington & Burling law firm, and specializes in politically-related criminal defense.
Trump's foreign campaign manager, Paul Manafort
  • Reginald Brown: Brown, an attorney at WilmerHale, oversees the firm's congressional investigations practice. He previously worked in the GW Bush administration's Office of WH Counsel and was deputy general counsel to Jeb Bush.
The Trump campaign's communications adviser, Michael Caputo
  • Dennis Vacco: Vacco, partner at Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman specializing in government investigations, was New York state attorney general under Clinton and a U.S. attorney for the Western District of New York under Reagan.
Roger Stone
  • Robert Buschel: Buschel, attorney at Buschel Gibbons, focuses on criminal and civil litigation.

Former Trump advisors Carter Page and Boris Epshteyn have also have lawyers.

Go deeper

Privacy advocate will be new Big Tech threat at FTC

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Ty B Photos

The Biden administration sent another warning to Big Tech on Monday in nominating longtime privacy advocate Alvaro Bedoya to the Federal Trade Commission.

Why it matters: Bedoya's expertise on data collection and surveillance, combined with Biden's pick to lead the FTC, tech antitrust legal scholar Lina Khan, signals aggressive action from both the consumer protection and antitrust arms of the agency.

"Big Lie" hits California recall election

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The "Big Lie," a falsehood peddled by Donald Trump that the 2020 election was "stolen," is now being peddled by conservative figures amid other down-ballot elections, most notably, the California recall election.

Why it matters: Now that the precedent has been set, some conservatives will likely use unfounded allegations of election fraud as a basis for undermining all potential election outcomes they don't agree with.

Exclusive: New outlet backed by Bill Gates will tackle climate change

Amy Harder interviews Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm for the launch edition of Cipher. Photo: courtesy of Cipher

An energy coalition launched by Bill Gates is backing a new publication called "Cipher" dedicated to the coverage of the climate crisis, its new editor tells Axios.

Why it matters: The outlet promises to have complete editorial independence from its backer, Breakthrough Energy, a six-year-old climate advocacy network founded by Bill Gates.