Emmet Thomas Flood IV is an American attorney who served as the interim White House Counsel to U.S. President Donald Trump from October 17, 2018, to December 10, 2018, following the resignation of Don McGahn.[2] He also served as a Special Counsel during the George W. Bush Administration.

Emmet Flood
White House Counsel
October 17, 2018 – December 10, 2018
PresidentDonald Trump
Preceded byDon McGahn
Succeeded byPat Cipollone
Personal details
Emmet Thomas Flood IV

1956 (age 64–65)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Political partyRepublican[1]
EducationUniversity of Dallas (BA)
University of Texas at Austin (MA, PhD)
Yale University (JD)

Early life and educationEdit

Flood attended Fenwick High School in Oak Park, Illinois, graduating in 1974.[3][4][5]

Flood obtained a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Dallas in 1978. He received a Master of Arts and a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Texas at Austin in 1981 and 1986, respectively. His doctoral thesis was entitled Philosophy and narrative form.[6] He went on to earn a Juris Doctor from Yale Law School in 1991.[7][8] He was an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation fellow at Wesleyan University from 1987 to 1988, where he delivered a colloquium entitled: "Some Uses of Narrative in the History of Philosophy: Synoptic Judgment and Philosophical Plot".[9]


Flood was a law clerk for Judge Ralph K. Winter of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and for Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States Antonin Scalia.[10][11]

Flood advised President Bill Clinton during his impeachment process.[12] Flood's law firm also represented Hillary Clinton on matters relating to the Clinton email controversy.[12]

Flood represented Dick Cheney in response to Wilson v. Cheney, a civil lawsuit filed by Valerie Plame for his alleged role in the Plame affair.[8][13]

Flood advised Bob McDonnell on his response to the corruption investigation into his activities.[14][15] Flood was retained by Cameron International to defend them after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.[16][17]

In 2017, Flood was offered a job in the Trump Administration, though he declined.[12] In March, 2018, Flood met with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office to discuss the White House's response to the Special Counsel investigation.[18]

On May 2, 2018, it was reported that Flood would be replacing Ty Cobb as the White House attorney dealing with the investigation of President Donald Trump by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.[19]

On October 18, 2018, Flood was appointed Assistant to the President and Counsel to the President, replacing Don McGahn, to temporarily hold the position until the hiring of Pat Cipollone is complete.[20] He demitted office on December 10, 2018.

He is a partner at Williams & Connolly.[8][21]

He wrote a response in late April 2019 to Attorney General William Barr concerning the Mueller Report.[22]


He served on the Advisory Council of the Catholic Charities Legal Network.[23]


  • Flood, Emmet T. (1982). "Augustine and the classical tradition of rhetoric". History of Education. 11 (4): 237–250. doi:10.1080/0046760820110401. ISSN 0046-760X.
  • Flood, Emmet T. (1987). "Descartes's Comedy of Error". MLN. 102 (4): 847–866. doi:10.2307/2905794. ISSN 0026-7910. JSTOR 2905794.
  • Flood, Emmet T. (1988). "The Narrative Structure of Augustine's Confessions". International Philosophical Quarterly. 28 (2): 141–162. doi:10.5840/ipq19882822. ISSN 0019-0365.
  • Flood, Emmet T. (1991). "Fact Construction and Judgment in Constitutional Adjudication". The Yale Law Journal. 100 (6): 1795–1814. doi:10.2307/796786. ISSN 0044-0094. JSTOR 796786.


  1. ^ Costa, Robert; Leonnig, Carol D.; Dawsey, Josh (May 2, 2018). "'The gloves may be coming off': Shake-up of Trump legal team signals combative posture toward special counsel" – via www.washingtonpost.com.
  2. ^ Helderman, Rosalind S. (May 2, 2018). "'A very steady hand': New White House lawyer brings deep experience as he enters fray of Russia investigation". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on May 3, 2018. The White House announced Tuesday that Flood will replace Ty Cobb in the White House Counsel's Office, serving as a point person for the White House's response to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
  3. ^ Pioneer Press Staff (March 14, 2015). "Fun for a cause at Blackfriars Dinner Dance". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on March 11, 2018. Kelly R. Welsh '70, general counsel of the U.S. Department of Commerce, and Emmet T. Flood '74, an attorney in Washington D.C., and former deputy and assistant special counsel to the President, were inducted into Fenwick's Hall of Fame.
  4. ^ @fenwickfriars (April 24, 2015). "Lumen Tranquillum Award presented to Fr. Charles W. Dahm, '55 Hall of Fame Kelly R. Welsh '70 Emmet T. Flood IV '74" (Tweet). Archived from the original on March 11, 2018. Retrieved March 11, 2018 – via Twitter.
  5. ^ "Fenwick Alumni Magazine - January 2012". Fenwick High School. January 9, 2012. p. 38. Mr. and Mrs. Emmet T. Flood IV '74
  6. ^ Philosophy and narrative form. WorldCat. OCLC 640224033.
  7. ^ Lima, Cristiano; Gerstein, Josh (May 2, 2018). "Who is Emmet Flood, Trump's new Russia probe lawyer?". Politico. Flood graduated magna cum laude in 1978 from the University of Dallas with a bachelor of arts, according to the bio. He went on to get a Master of Arts and a doctorate from the University of Texas at Austin and to pursue postdoctoral studies in humanities at Wesleyan University in the 1980s. In 1991, Flood got his J.D. from Yale Law School.
  8. ^ a b c "Emmet T. Flood". Williams & Connolly. Archived from the original on March 11, 2018.
  9. ^ "INVENTORY OF THE BROADSIDE CASE COLLECTION, 1896 - 2004". Wesleyan University. Wesleyan University Center for Humanities. Emmet Flood, Mellon Fellow: Some Uses of Narrative in the History of Philosophy: Synoptic Judgment and Philosophical Plot. Russell House. Apr. 18, 1988. Colloquium. Center Colloquium Room. Apr. 26, 1988.
  10. ^ Hutcheson, Ron (June 9, 2007). "Bush circling the wagons for legal battle". San Diego Union-Tribune. Archived from the original on March 11, 2018. Retrieved March 11, 2018. Emmet Flood, a Republican who served on former President Clinton's legal team during Clinton's impeachment proceedings, left his Washington law firm last summer to represent Vice President Dick Cheney in the CIA leak case. More recently, Flood has resisted Congress' efforts to obtain White House e-mails that were sent through the Republican Party's e-mail system. He previously clerked for Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
  11. ^ White House Office of the Press Secretary (June 8, 2007). "Personnel Announcement". National Archives and Records Administration. Archived from the original on March 11, 2018. The President has named Emmet Flood to be Deputy Assistant to the President and Special Counsel to the President. Mr. Flood recently was a Partner at Williams & Connolly, LLP. Prior to this, he served as a Law Clerk to Associate Justice Antonin Scalia of the Supreme Court of the United States. Earlier in his career, he served as Law Clerk for Judge Ralph K. Winter, Jr. of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Mr. Flood received his bachelor's degree from the University of Dallas and his JD from Yale Law School. He received his master's degree and PhD from the University of Texas at Austin.
  12. ^ a b c Freifeld, Karen (March 10, 2018). Craft, Diane (ed.). "Clinton impeachment lawyer met with Trump about White House job: source". Reuters.
  13. ^ Cone, Allen (March 11, 2018). "Trump denies report he's unhappy with legal team". UPI. Flood, now an attorney with Williams & Connolly, defended former Vice President Dick Cheney in a civil suit from former CIA officer Valerie Plame.
  14. ^ Nolan, Jim; Meola, Olympia (July 4, 2013). "Washington lawyer Flood counsels McDonnell on probes". Richmond Times-Dispatch. High-powered Washington lawyer Emmet T. Flood was in Richmond at the Executive Mansion Tuesday to speak with McDonnell, administration officials and others as the governor attempts to navigate the legal and political waters that have engulfed the last year of his term and threaten to swamp his legacy.
  15. ^ Helderman, Rosalind S.; Zapotosky, Matt; Leonnig, Carol D.; Vozzella, Laura (September 6, 2014). "How the federal corruption case against the McDonnells came together". The Washington Post.
  16. ^ Eggen, Dan; Tumulty, Karen (June 21, 2010). "BP, Transocean tap a well of Washington lobbyists and consultants". The Washington Post. Smaller players also have shored up their defenses: Cameron International, the Houston firm that built Deepwater Horizon's failed blowout preventer, has retained Emmet T. Flood of Williams & Connolly, a former White House special counsel during the Bush administration who represented Cheney in the CIA leak case.
  17. ^ Moore, Jack B. (June 16, 2010). INQUIRY INTO THE DEEPWATER HORIZON GULF COAST OIL SPILL. Government Publishing Office. p. 345.
  18. ^ Haberman, Maggie; Schmidt, Michael S. (March 10, 2018). "Trump Talks With Clinton Impeachment Lawyer About Aiding in Mueller Response". The New York Times.
  19. ^ Apuzzo, Matt; Schmidt, Michael S. (2018-05-02). "Trump to Add Clinton Impeachment Lawyer Emmet Flood to Replace Ty Cobb". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-05-02.
  20. ^ Lee, Mary. "Emmet Flood temporarily takes McGahn's place as White House counsel". Politico. Emmet Flood has been appointed Assistant to the President and Counsel to the President, effective this morning," White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement. "Mr. Flood will serve in the role until Pat Cipollone comes on board as Counsel to the President, at which time Mr. Flood will return to being Special Counsel to the President.
  21. ^ Politi, Daniel (March 11, 2018). "Trump in Talks With Clinton's Impeachment Lawyer for Possible Expansion of Legal Team". Slate.
  22. ^ "Read the letter White House counsel Emmet Flood wrote to AG Barr". NBC News.
  23. ^ "Annual Report 2017" (PDF). Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington. p. 14. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2018-03-11. Retrieved 2018-03-11.
Legal offices
Preceded by White House Counsel

Succeeded by