Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R), one of President Donald Trump’s top attorneys for the special counsel’s investigation, suggested on Sunday that the president’s longtime attorney Michael Cohen might have made hush-money payments on behalf of Trump that were similar to the $130,000 wired to porn star Stormy Daniels just days before the 2016 presidential election.
“The agreement with Michael Cohen, as far as I know, is a longstanding agreement that Michael Cohen takes care of situations like this, then gets paid for them sometimes,” Giuliani said on ABC’s This Week.
“There were other things involved that had nothing to do with Stormy Daniels,” Giuliani added. “In other words, other amounts of money. This was not uncommon for him to do that.”
Last week, Giuliani appeared to contradict Trump’s account about when the president became aware that Cohen made the payment to Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford. Appearing with Sean Hannity on Fox News, Giuliani said Trump reimbursed Cohen “over a period of several months.” But on April 5, Trump denied that he had any knowledge of the payment.
Giuliani—whose media appearances last week set the White House scrambling—said that if he were Cohen at the time the payment to Daniels was arranged in October 2016, he would have kept it from the president so as to not “bother him two weeks before the election with this thing.” He also said the payment did not amount to an illegal campaign contribution, but rather was intended “to protect [Trump], to protect his family.”
Cohen, who is under criminal investigation for alleged “acts of concealment” and “fraud,” is no longer representing the president, Giuliani said. But the previous arrangement between the two men might have led to other payouts, the former mayor and federal prosecutor said.
“I would think if it was necessary, yes. He made payments for the president or he’s conducted business for the president,” he said. “Which means he had legal fees, monies laid out and expenditures, which I have on my bills to my clients.”
The president’s legal team expects Cohen to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, according to Giuliani, who said, “I don’t think they’ll be happy with it because he doesn’t have any incriminating evidence about the president or himself.”