WASHINGTON – President Trump's legal team is in talks with federal investigators about a possible interview with the president related to the wide-ranging investigation into Russia's election interference and possible collusion with Trump associates.
An official familiar with the probe, who was not authorized to speak publicly about private discussions, said the talks with Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team are very preliminary.
It could take weeks to agree on the scope of the interview and the logistics, the official said.
However, Mueller has still not made any formal request to interview Trump, according to the official and another who was not authorized to speak publicly about White House requests.
The talks, first disclosed Monday by NBC News, represent an expected progression of an investigation that also includes an examination of whether Trump sought to obstruct the inquiry with his abrupt firing of FBI Director James Comey last May.
Trump's legal team has long indicated that they have been cooperating with the investigation, and as recently as last month in an interview with the New York Times Trump said that he believed Mueller would be "fair."
Still, the specter of the Russia investigation has visibly rankled the president, who during a weekend briefing at Camp David continued to proclaim that there is "no collusion – no crime." Trump has frequently denounced the investigation, which has resulted in the prosecutions of four former campaign aides including ex-national security adviser Michael Flynn, as a "witch hunt" and a "hoax."
The prospect of a Trump meeting comes as Mueller's team has completed interviews with a number of the president's former and current White House aides. It is immediately unclear whether there will be a need to call some officials back for additional questioning.