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Sam Nunberg

Sam Nunberg is a former aide to Donald Trump.

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A former Trump campaign aide spent much of Monday promising to defy a subpoena from special counsel Robert Mueller, even throwing down the challenge to "arrest me."

But by Monday night, he backed off and said he probably would cooperate in the end.

In an interview Monday night with The Associated Press, Sam Nunberg said he was angry over Mueller's request to have him appear in front of a grand jury and turn over thousands of emails and other communications with other ex-officials, among them his mentor Roger Stone. But he predicted that, in the end, he'd find a way to comply.

"I'm going to end up cooperating with them," he said.

It was a reversal from his tone throughout the day, when he lashed out at Trump and his campaign and threatened to defy Mueller in a series of interviews.

"Why do I have to do it?" Nunberg told CNN of the subpoena. "I'm not cooperating," he said later as he challenged officials to charge him.

In the earlier interviews, Nunberg said he thought Mueller may already have incriminating evidence on Trump directly, although he would not say what that evidence might be.

"I think he may have done something during the election," Nunberg told MSNBC of the president, "but I don't know that for sure." He later told CNN that Mueller "thinks Trump is the Manchurian candidate." A reference drawn from a Cold War novel and film, a "Manchurian candidate" is an American brainwashed or otherwise compromised to work on behalf of an adversarial government.

Shortly after Nunberg lobbed the first allegation, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders rebuffed him during the White House press briefing.

"I definitely think he doesn't know that for sure because he's incorrect. As we've said many times before, there was no collusion with the Trump campaign," Sanders said. "He hasn't worked at the White House, so I certainly can't speak to him or the lack of knowledge that he clearly has."

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