Giuliani says Trump reimbursed Cohen for Stormy Daniels payment

Rudy Giuliani said Wednesday that President Donald Trump paid back his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, the $130,000 i...

Posted: May 3, 2018 11:35 AM
Updated: May 3, 2018 11:35 AM

Rudy Giuliani said Wednesday that President Donald Trump paid back his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, the $130,000 in hush money that was used to pay off Stormy Daniels.

The payment is going to turn out to be "perfectly legal," Giuliani said in an interview with Fox News' Sean Hannity.

"That money was not campaign money, sorry," Giuliani said. "I'm giving you a fact now that you don't know. It's not campaign money. No campaign finance violation."

Hannity replied: "Because they funneled it through the law firm?"

To which Giuliani said: "Funneled it through the law firm, and the President repaid him."

Giuliani recently joined Trump's legal team in an effort to bring special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russia's 2016 election meddling and any possible coordination with the Trump campaign to an end. The addition of Giuliani came following the departure of Trump's former lawyer John Dowd.

Trump previously denied knowledge of the payment, which has since spurred a lawsuit against the President.

When asked about Giuliani's comments, White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley told Fox News that it is ongoing litigation and referred the questions to the President's outside counsel.

Later, Giuliani told The Washington Post he had spoken to the President far in advance about publicly discussing the reimbursement, and said he doesn't expect to be fired. He said his remarks on Hannity were approved by Trump.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal after the Fox News interview aired, Giuliani said again that Trump had paid Cohen back, but argued that it was not a campaign finance violation or a crime of any kind.

When asked whether his statements to Fox contradict Trump's previous denial of knowledge of the payment, Giuliani said it was "not [an] issue," according to the Journal. Trump was "probably not aware" of Cohen's payment to Daniels when it happened, he added.

"Remember October 2016, hardly will recall any of that in detail. I don't remember it clearly either," Giuliani said, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Cohen admitted to paying Daniels out of his own pocket through a private LLC. However, Trump never signed the nondisclosure agreement, so Daniels is claiming in her suit that the agreement is now void.

"In a private transaction in 2016, I used my own personal funds to facilitate a payment of $130,000 to Ms. Stephanie Clifford," Cohen said in a statement in February. "Neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Ms. Clifford, and neither reimbursed me for the payment, either directly or indirectly."

There have been questions surrounding the legality of the payment considering various campaign finance laws.

In January, the group Common Cause sent letters to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and the Federal Election Commission asking them to investigate the Daniels payment, calling it an illegal in-kind campaign contribution.

Daniels' lawyer Michael Avenatti said he was "stunned" by Giuliani's claim that Trump knew about the payment. "I am stunned and speechless. If this is accurate, the American people have been lied to and deceived for months. And justice must be served," Avenatti said.

Common Cause's Paul S. Ryan said Giuliani's comments could expose Trump to possible criminal prosecution, along with Cohen. Ryan said if Trump reimbursed Cohen that would mean Trump knew about the payment, which would make Trump vulnerable.

Ryan said despite whether Cohen was paid back, Trump's lawyer could have violated campaign contribution law, because Ryan said it appears Cohen made an illegally large in-kind contribution to the Trump campaign.

In the same interview, Giuliani also called ex-FBI Director James Comey a "disgraceful liar," and said he thinks Comey should be prosecuted.

"I know James Comey. I know the President. Sorry Jim, you're a liar -- a disgraceful liar," Giuliani said.

Giuliani then went on to say that "every FBI agent in America has his head down," because of Comey.

Comey and Trump have had a tumultuous relationship following Comey's firing. Comey recently published a memoir, which detailed his encounters with the President, and has said he thinks Trump is "morally unfit" for the presidency.

Trump, in turn, has also repeatedly sounded off on Comey via social media.

Prior to Comey's book release, Trump even insinuated Comey should go to jail, tweeting: "The big questions in Comey's badly reviewed book aren't answered like, how come he gave up Classified Information (jail), why did he lie to Congress (jail), why did the DNC refuse to give Server to the FBI (why didn't they TAKE it), why the phony memos, McCabe's $700,000 & more?"

Giuliani echoed that suggestion on Fox News, telling Hannity that Comey should be prosecuted.

"Comey should be prosecuted for leaking confidential FBI information when he leaked his report intended to develop a special prosecutor for the President of the United States," Giuliani said.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 297321

Reported Deaths: 6805
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto19814231
Hinds18949395
Harrison16886282
Rankin12842265
Jackson12750234
Lee9720163
Madison9516204
Jones8035148
Forrest7289138
Lauderdale6872228
Lowndes6061140
Lamar593381
Lafayette5767114
Washington5232130
Bolivar4630124
Oktibbeha443095
Panola433698
Pearl River4212132
Warren4144115
Pontotoc411071
Marshall405995
Monroe3996129
Union397174
Neshoba3848171
Lincoln3624104
Hancock352978
Leflore3400121
Sunflower320986
Tate303974
Pike302697
Scott296171
Alcorn292763
Yazoo292066
Itawamba290675
Coahoma283069
Tippah280065
Copiah279959
Simpson277581
Prentiss271258
Marion258878
Wayne255641
Leake254172
Covington250280
Grenada248878
Adams235778
George232745
Newton232753
Winston222179
Jasper214145
Tishomingo213266
Attala206971
Chickasaw201954
Holmes182870
Clay179452
Stone173429
Tallahatchie171739
Clarke170773
Calhoun158628
Smith153833
Yalobusha145736
Greene128133
Walthall125441
Montgomery123540
Noxubee123431
Perry123235
Lawrence121421
Carroll119425
Amite112435
Webster111132
Jefferson Davis102731
Tunica99824
Claiborne99030
Benton94024
Humphreys93128
Kemper91423
Quitman77514
Franklin76420
Choctaw70117
Jefferson62827
Wilkinson62727
Sharkey49217
Issaquena1676
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 499411

Reported Deaths: 10149
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson719951403
Mobile36396741
Madison32674469
Tuscaloosa24391423
Montgomery22789523
Shelby22250219
Baldwin19915289
Lee15070161
Calhoun13961296
Morgan13785255
Etowah13413327
Marshall11458215
Houston10121264
Elmore9509190
Limestone9435139
St. Clair9050228
Cullman8993183
Lauderdale8628214
DeKalb8507175
Talladega7643165
Walker6600260
Jackson6551104
Autauga634492
Blount6252128
Colbert6007121
Coffee5261104
Dale4680107
Russell407534
Franklin400779
Covington3996107
Chilton3911104
Escambia379473
Tallapoosa3637143
Clarke344553
Chambers3432111
Dallas3428142
Pike292973
Marion288796
Lawrence285787
Winston258568
Bibb246058
Marengo244657
Geneva240270
Pickens225757
Barbour213851
Hale212569
Fayette202657
Butler201466
Henry183541
Cherokee178140
Monroe166739
Randolph165141
Washington157036
Macon147845
Crenshaw146755
Clay146254
Cleburne140141
Lamar133933
Lowndes133151
Wilcox123225
Bullock117736
Conecuh107224
Perry106427
Sumter100832
Coosa90324
Greene88732
Choctaw55723
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