"Crisis management" mode at the White House: lawyers consulted on a possible impeachment


A source familiar with the matter said outside lawyers are being sought for consultation by the White House on the prospect of a speedy and last minute impeachment of President Donald Trump.

The source said at this point that lawyers advising the White House believe there is not enough time for Democrats logistically to move the articles of impeachment out of the House and into the hands of the senators for a rapid impeachment of the president before January 20.

But the source said lawyers for the President have started to game out the impeachment possibility as the likelihood of Vice President Mike Pence and the Cabinet invoking the 25th Amendment seems remote.

The source added the President's attorneys have been consulted about the language used in Trump's video messages in the aftermath of the Capitol riots. During that process, White House counsel Pat Cipollone and chief of staff Mark Meadows went to Trump to urge him to record the videos to save his presidency and hold off efforts to remove him from office.

Cipollone is now considering resigning, two sources familiar with his thinking told CNN's Pamela Brown. Since the election, he had considered it multiple times but has been urged to stay for the good of the country by members of the Senate and the Cabinet.

Cipollone defended the President during impeachment proceedings over phone calls with the leader of Ukraine, but his potential exit raises questions about who would represent Trump if current impeachment talks pick up more steam. Cipollone's participation is now highly unlikely.

The White House is in "crisis management" mode following the siege at the Capitol, the source said.

"The lawyers are involved," the source said.

Meetings have been almost non-stop inside the White House to hash out plans to bring the Trump presidency to an end in the least chaotic way possible, the source said.

"Can you land the plane with 12 days left," the source said, summing up the goal of the remaining staffers and advisers around the President.

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