In a surprise move, President Donald Trump’s legal team suddenly distanced itself on Sunday from Sidney Powell, the firebrand conservative attorney who claimed at a press conference Thursday that she could prove an international voter fraud conspiracy that stole the 2020 general election.
The Trump campaign’s move comes after a tumultuous several days in which Powell made multiple statements about the voting process, unspooled various complex conspiracy theories, and vowed to “blow up” Georgia with a “biblical” court filing.
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Fox News star Tucker Carlson and Powell got into a public spat after Carlson asked her to produce some evidence of her claims. Powell said she’s saving the evidence for court.
“Sidney Powell is practicing law on her own. She is not a member of the Trump Legal Team. She is also not a lawyer for the President in his personal capacity,” former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani and another lawyer for Trump, Jenna Ellis, said in a statement.
Powell released her own statement saying she understood the move, and repeated her promise to “release the Kraken” she has been promising to reveal.
Sidney Powell released this statement to @CBSNews and @kristincbrown after the Trump campaign said she's not on the team:
— Kathryn Watson (@kathrynw5) November 23, 2020
It’s further tumult for a legal team that has lost numerous cases in contested states as it works to overturn the results of the Nov. 3 election.
In the latest blow, a federal judge dismissed on Saturday night the Trump campaign’s effort to block the certification of votes in Pennsylvania in a ruling that described the arguments as “strained.”
The terse Sunday evening statement was the latest sign of wariness over Powell’s approach even within some conservative circles.
Powell made headlines with her statements at a Thursday news conference where, joined by Giuliani and Ellis, she suggested that a server hosting evidence of voting irregularities was located in Germany, that voting software used by Georgia and other states was created at the direction of late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and that votes for Trump had probably been switched in favor of Joe Biden.
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In a subsequent interview with Newsmax, she accused Georgia’s Republican governor, Brian Kemp, and the state’s Republican secretary of state of being part of a conspiracy involving a voting-system contract award that she contends harmed Trump’s reelection bid.
“Georgia’s probably going to be the first state I’m going to blow up and Mr. Kemp and the secretary of state need to go with it,” she said, later adding that a court filing she hoped to submit this week involving the state would be “biblical.”
The status of that lawsuit was unclear Sunday night.
Powell, a former federal prosecutor, took over last year as the lead lawyer for Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.
Since then, a federal judge rejected her claims of prosecutorial misconduct and has responded quizzically to some of her arguments, including her suggestion at a hearing several weeks ago that her conversations with Trump about the Flynn case were privileged.
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She has supported a Justice Department motion to dismiss the Flynn prosecution, a request that remains pending before U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan.
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The Associated Press contributed to this article