Saturday’s controversial phone call between President Donald Trump and Georgia election officials brought a new name to light: Conservative attorney Cleta Mitchell, who, according to the New York Times, has been tacitly supporting President Donald Trump for weeks in his push to overthrow the elections – a remarkable one Added to his campaign legal team as she is a partner in a large law firm that has stated that she is “concerned” about her participation in the phone call.
Cleta Mitchell, Esq. Von Foley & Lardner, LLP, poses in the law firm’s law library on Tuesday, September … [+]
Bill Clark / CQ Appeal, Inc. via Getty Images
White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said at the beginning of the call that included Mitchell that although she is “not the attorney on file” she was “involved” in the campaign’s legal maneuvers to try to get Joe overthrow Biden’s victory in Georgia.
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, this was the first time it became publicly known that Mitchell was involved in Trump’s continued efforts to reverse the November election results.
Mitchell, a former Democratic member of the Oklahoma Legislature, is a partner at Foley & Lardner, a Milwaukee-based law firm whose 1,000 attorneys represent several influential corporations.
In recent years, Mitchell has become a leading advocate for prominent Republicans and conservative groups such as the National Republican Senatorial Committee, American Legislative Exchange Council, and the National Rifle Association, and has made a name for himself as a brand for criticizing actions taken, according to the Times Lockdown of Coronavirus and Treatment of Tea Party-affiliated nonprofits during the Obama administration.
Foley’s communications director issued a statement Monday that the company was “concerned” about Mitchell’s participation in the Jan. 2 conference call and was “working to understand her involvement more fully.”
The company does not represent “parties that want to contest the results of the presidential election,” the statement said.
Mitchell was a registered Democrat when she was elected to the Oklahoma House of Representatives in her 20s and ran unsuccessfully for Lieutenant Governor of Oklahoma in 1986. Ten years later, after changing party affiliation, she moved to Washington, DC. According to the Times, Mitchell established himself as one of the leading electoral and nonprofit attorneys for the GOP. According to the Daily Beast, before the high-profile phone call was published, Mitchell had “done almost all of her legal work for Trump and his team outside of the public eye and instead opted to appear sporadically in Trump-friendly media.” However, your participation in the campaign goes back “about two months”. In a podcast, she described herself as a “volunteer” in the Trump campaign. Mitchell previously served on the board of directors of the NRA and recently represented the charitable foundation of Trump’s former chief strategist Steve Bannon, who was charged by federal prosecutors with fraud against donors.
Mitchell’s first husband, Duane Draper, came out as a gay man after the divorce. He became director of the Massachusetts Bureau of AIDS Policy and died in 1991. Mitchell’s second husband, Dale Mitchell, was convicted of bank fraud in 1992. Mitchell later claimed the conviction was due to “overarching state regulations”.
In early November, Mitchell tweeted criticism after appearing on Fox News in support of Trump’s false election fraud allegations: “Forget this annoying constitution. . . I’m glad to be seen as a crazy job because I believe in the rule of law. “
Cleta Mitchell, a key figure on the president’s phone call, was an early supporter of Trump’s election fraud (WaPo) claims