When McGahn was hired as White House counsel, he was known largely as a campaign finance expert and not necessarily deeply versed in the kind of law that White House officials face every day. But he had advised Trump’s campaign while working at the Jones Day law firm and Trump saw him as a scrappy lawyer on the campaign trail.
Friends say McGahn probably appealed to the president with his get-to-the-point style.
.. McGahn, particularly in the early months of the administration, cautioned Trump about contacting Justice Department officials and even told associates he was concerned Trump was doing so without his knowledge. The two men would have “spectacular” fights, according to a person who witnessed some of them.
.. McGahn’s value to Trump has been most apparent in the role he played in helping select Neil M. Gorsuch as Trump’s Supreme Court nominee as well as with the numerous candidates who have now been confirmed for federal court judgeships across the country. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) often praises McGahn to Trump and tells the president his top lawyer is shaping his legacy on judges in a positive way — words Trump likes hearing.
.. “Good lawyers try not to abandon their clients,” the person close to McGahn said. “And the client isn’t Trump; it’s the presidency.”
Francisco was part of a wave of Jones Day lawyers who joined the Trump administration in the early days. Several top Justice Department lawyers—including Chad Readler in the Civil Division and Hashim Mooppan, also in Civil—were also a part of that defection. Jones Day’s Eric Dreiband is the pending nominee for the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division.