Pence hires outside counsel for Russian Federation probes

Posted June 16, 2017

Vice President Mike Pence speaks during a conference on Prosperity and Security in Central America, Thursday, June 15, 2017, in Miami.

Vice President Mike Pence has hired outside legal counsel to oversee his response to investigations into possible collusion between Russian Federation and President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign.

Cullen also served as the attorney general of Virginia and as a USA attorney under President George H.W. Bush.

Trump hired his own personal lawyer, Marc Kasowitz, a week ago, and he has been hard at work defending the president with factually inaccurate statements.

That's according to a statement from Pence spokesman Jarrod Agen.

Vice President Mike Pence, seen during an April press conference in Sydney, Australia.

He dismissed as "phony" the idea that his campaign colluded with any Russian effort to sway the 2016 election.

Cullen is no stranger to high-profile federal investigations.

Carlos Diaz Rosillo, director of policy and interagency coordination in the White House, said the USA and the Central American leaders hoped to make commitments on infrastructure plans and energy reform, among other things.

Aides said the vice president had considered several candidates before settling on Cullen and made his final decision earlier this week.

In a tweet Thursday morning, Trump called the Post's report "phony".

Pence chaired the president's transition after the election - a period during which Trump's former national security adviser Michael Flynn had repeated contact with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. He has defended large corporations in Department of Justice investigations, and served as Virginia's attorney general in the late 1990s.

The vice president's office said Pence is committed to cooperating in the investigation, and he hired lawyer Richard Cullen so Pence could continue to focus on the administration's goals. Of course, as a public servent, Pence's salary has been paid for by taxpayers for years but I suppose we're just splitting hairs at that point.

While James Comey was FBI director, he told President Trump he was not personally under investigation when the president asked him, but that applied only to the period preceding his May 9 firing.