Patrick F. Philbin

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Patrick F. Philbin
Patrick F Philbin.jpg
Alma Mater Harvard Law School

Patrick F. Philbin is an American lawyer who serves as Deputy Counsel to the President and Deputy Assistant to the President in the Office of White House Counsel in the Donald J. Trump administration.[1] He previously served as a political appointee in the Department of Justice during the George W. Bush administration.

Academics[edit | edit source]

Philbin holds a bachelor's degree from Yale University (1989), a J.D. from Harvard Law School, and a diploma in legal studies from the University of Cambridge.[2]

Philbin wrote a note in the Harvard Law Review regarding the specialty requirement in the medieval action of covenant.

Career[edit | edit source]

Philbin first served as a law clerk for the federal appeals judge, Laurence Silberman. Next, he worked as a clerk for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.[3]. Following his clerkships, Philbin entered private practice in the Washington, D.C. office of Kirkland & Ellis.[2]

During the Bush Administration, Philbin served as a political appointee in the Department of Justice, first as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel from 2001 to 2003 and then as an Associate Deputy Attorney General in the Office of the Deputy Attorney General from 2003 to 2005.[3] [4][2][5]Philbin was one of the lawyers who helped counsel President Bush that as head of the United States' Government executive branch, the president had the authority to charge Guantanamo captives before military commissions.[3]

According to then-Acting Attorney General James Comey, Philbin was present in March 2004 when he rushed to John Ashcroft's hospital bed to try to prevent other Bush officials from persuading the very sick Attorney General to reverse Comey's decision as Acting Attorney General to not approve renewal of the controversial warrantless wiretap program during the war on terror.[6]

Comey said that Philbin's career suffered when he supported Comey's intervention to prevent Gonzales from abusing Ashcroft. According to Comey, Vice President Dick Cheney blocked the anticipated appointment of Philbin to the position of Principal Deputy Solicitor General in the Office of the Solicitor General.[7][4]

Philbin subsequently returned to private practice by joining the Washington, D.C. office of Kirkland & Ellis as a partner focusing on appellate litigation, complex litigation, and data security.[2] In 2019, Philbin was appointed as Deputy Counsel to the President and Deputy Assistant to the President in the Office of White House Counsel in the Trump Administration.[1] In 2020, he was appointed among the defense team that will represent President Donald Trump in the impeachment hearing case in the senate[8].

References[edit | edit source]