Pence hires outside legal counsel

(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

WASHINGTON (AP/WISH) — Vice President Mike Pence has hired outside legal counsel to oversee his response to investigations into possible collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.

Pence’s office confirms that he has retained Richard Cullen of McGuire Woods “to assist him in responding to inquiries by the special counsel.”

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

Richard previously served as Virginia attorney general and U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

The president has also hired a private lawyer, Marc Kasowitz.

On Friday, Peter Rusthoven joined WISH-TV’s Daybreak to discuss the move. Rusthoven served as associate counsel to President Ronald Reagan.

“I think it means that the vice president, like others, is being prudent at the beginning of an investigation,” Rusthoven said. “No one knows where it will end or exactly what it will get into.”

Rusthoven, a partner at Barnes & Thornburg, said the move doesn’t imply guilt.

“I think it’s very common for high-ranking officials in a situation like this to get private counsel,” Rusthoven said. “It doesn’t mean he’s guilty of anything or that he’s even concerned about being guilty about anything, it just means he wants to be sure he proceeds carefully and prudently over the course of the investigation.”

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