The following is a transcript of an interview with Drew Findling and Jennifer Little, attorneys for former President Donald Trump, that aired on «Face the Nation» on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023.
MARGARET BRENNAN: The investigation of Former President Trump in Fulton County, Georgia took a strange turn last week — and Mr. Trump’s lawyers now argue it could impact a possible trial. At the center of the controversy: Emily Kohrs, the forewoman for the special grand jury that investigated alleged election interference in Georgia by Trump and his allies. Kohrs gave several interviews in which she hinted that more than a dozen key players, perhaps even the former president, might have been recommended for indictments. Now, special grand juries can’t indict, but that recommendation could prompt the District Attorney to create a criminal grand jury. The judge overseeing the case told CNN last week that although the deliberations are confidential, «what witnesses said, what you put in the report, those are not off limits» to those on the jury. The attorneys for President Trump in the Georgia case had not given an interview to any TV network, but the Kohrs media tour prompted them to talk to our Robert Costa.
EMILY KOHRS TO NBC NEWS: I kind of wanted to subpoena the former president, because I got to swear everybody in. And so I thought it’d be really cool to get 60 seconds with President Trump.
CNN REPORTER: Did you recommend charges against Donald Trump?
EMILY KOHRS TO CNN: I really don’t want to share something that the judge made a conscious decision not to share.
ROBERT COSTA: Could Emily Kohrs’ public disclosures jeopardize the case that could be brought by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis? Kohrs is part of a «special purpose» grand jury that heard months of testimony from more than 75 witnesses about alleged Republican efforts to pressure state officials like Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to overturn President Biden’s victory in Georgia.
AUDIO CLIP: TRUMP- RAFFENSPERGER AUDIO: «Look Brad, I gotta get, I have to find 12,000 votes, and I have them.»
ROBERT COSTA: Kohrs suggested the special grand jury submitted a report to Willis last month that recommended multiple indictments on a range of charges. But Willis has yet to decide whether or not to convene a criminal grand jury that could issue indictments against some Trump allies, and even the former president himself.
Drew Findling and Jennifer Little head up the former president’s legal team in the Georgia case. They say that Emily Kohrs’ media tour has tainted any attempt by District Attorney Willis to move toward charging Trump.
ROBERT COSTA: What are your options?
DREW FINDLING: Are the results of that special purpose grand jury to be crumbled up like a piece of paper and thrown into a wastepaper basket? Our options are, can this district attorney’s office continue to be part of this case? We have to legally research all of those issues.
ROBERT COSTA: Have you lost confidence in the district attorney?
DREW FINDLING: We’ve lost 100 percent confidence in this process. We feel this process has been compromised
COSTA NARRATING: Emily Kohrs, they say, is not to blame.
DREW FINDLING: This 30-year-old person, to us, has actually provided us a lens and made us aware that every suspicion we had as to this questionable process was in fact a reality.
ROBERT COSTA: But she didn’t break any rules though, right? She may have broken a norm but the grand jury was over by the time she went on this media tour, as you put it. So what did she do wrong in your view legally?
DREW FINDLING: We have no chagrin towards this foreperson. And it looks like they lost perspective over keeping separation between prosecuting attorneys and the members of this grand jury. There cannot be a relationship. When the foreperson uses the word ‘we’ that lets you know there’s a relationship there. When she says in interviews ‘certain battles were not worth us battling,’ it’s not the special purpose grand jury that’s litigating, it’s the district attorney’s office.
ROBERT COSTA: She said it wouldn’t be worth the battle, they decided to call your client in, former President Trump, in as a witness.
DREW FINDLING: And, and –
ROBERT COSTA: That’s a statement she made.
DREW FINDLING: Right, and- and who knows what that is based on.
ROBERT COSTA: He wasn’t called in the special grand jury part of this investigation. Did that surprise you? And if he was called, would you have fought that subpoena?
JENNIFER LITTLE: I’m not going to speak to what our legal decisions would have been. But it was surprising and particularly once we heard the reasons why he wasn’t called, when we had our foreperson of this grand jury speaking about how excited and cool it would have been to be able to look at Donald Trump, the former president of the United States, for 60 seconds, but that they just determined that given the resources and the other witnesses that they had heard of, that they just didn’t need to have any more evidence at that point. It’s concerning that that was the level of diligence that was shown in that decision, and it was surprising frankly.
ROBERT COSTA NARRATING: If former President Trump is indicted, Willis can certainly expect a legal battle from Trump’s lawyers.
JENNIFER LITTLE: We absolutely do not believe that our client did anything wrong, and if any indictments were to come down, those are faulty indictments. We will absolutely fight anything tooth and nail.
ROBERT COSTA NARRATING: Willis and the district attorney’s office declined to comment for «Face the Nation.»