Rudy Giuliani called President Donald Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen a “serial liar,” regarding his testimony that Trump directed him to arrange hush payments to women claiming to have had affairs with the president.
Giuliani, Trump’s current personal attorney, reiterated his statement that Trump “didn’t know about” hush money payments Cohen made to porn star Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal, in interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday.
He added that Trump learned of the payments later and reimbursed Cohen, who said defied basic principles of ethics by recording Trump for several hours without his knowledge.
“This man is lying — is that a surprise to you, that Michael Cohen is lying?” said Giuliani. “The man got up in front of a judge and said, ‘I was fiercely loyal to Donald Trump.’ Nonsense. He wasn’t fiercely loyal to him, he taped him. He sat there with Chris Cuomo, told him he wasn’t being taped, showed him a drawer and he lied to him and taped him for two hours.”
Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison Wednesday after pleading guilty to nine federal charges, which included five for tax evasion and one count each of excessive campaign contribution, unlawful corporate contribution and false statements to a bank.
The former Trump lawyer said in court that he believed it was his duty to cover up the president’s “dirty deeds.”
After being sentenced, Cohen told ABC News Trump both directed him to make the hush payments and was aware what he was doing was wrong.
“Nothing at the Trump organization was ever done unless it was run through Mr. Trump. He directed me, as I said in my allocution and I said as well in the plea, he directed me to make the payments, he directed me to become involved in these matters,” Cohen said.
American Media Inc., which publishes the National Enquirer, admitted Wednesday it paid hush money to silence women to avoid a potential scandal from influencing the election. The publisher is cooperating with prosecutors, the Department of Justice announced after Cohen was sentenced.
Appearing on ABC News This Week Giuliani said the president denies directing Cohen to send the hush money and denied the payments were illegal.
“It’s not a crime, it’s not a crime, George, paying $130,000 to Stormy whatever, and paying $100,000 to the other one, it’s not a crime,” he said.
On Sunday, Trump tweeted that Cohen only offered information noting any wrongdoing after the FBI raided his Manhattan office in April.
“Remember, Michael Cohen only became a ‘Rat’ after the FBI did something which was absolutely unthinkable & unheard of until the Witch Hunt was illegally started. They BROKE INTO AN ATTORNEY’S OFFICE! Why didn’t they break into the DNC to get the Server, or Crooked’s office?” Trump wrote.
Giuliani also cast doubt about the possibility of Trump agreeing to sit for an interview with Mueller’s team in its investigation into Russian influence in the 2016 presidential election.
“Over my dead body, but, you know, I could be dead,” said Giuliani.
He cited the treatment of former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, both of whom pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, as the reason Trump would avoid an interview.
“Good luck after what they did to Flynn, the way they trapped him into perjury. And no sentence for him? Fourteen days for Papadopoulos. I did better on traffic violations than they did with Papadopoulos,” Giuliani said.
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