Team Trump: Oval Office tapes? Talk to my lawyer

In recent months, it has become a running joke in the Trump White House that the phrase most commonly uttered during press briefings is, “The tweet speaks for itself.” Now, it appears that “I would refer you to outside counsel” is giving the former phrase a run for its money.

The White House is now referring inquiries about the existence, or nonexistence, of recording devices in the Oval Office to President Donald Trump’s personal attorney—thus expanding the purview and portfolio of the embattled president’s outside legal team.

It’s also the latest example of a scandal-exhausted White House looking to get its agenda back on track by outsourcing, to the degree that it can, the public relations slog surrounding politically inconvenient questions to outside attorneys, allies, and advocacy groups.