Fasten your seat belts folks. It’s war. I know Emmet—in fact, he briefed me during the Bush to Obama transition when I was coming in as special counsel & he was headed out. He’s one of the very best. This will be a fight for the ages. https://t.co/E7BjqxJGuE— Norm Eisen (@NormEisen) May 2, 2018
“Look, we’ve talked a lot about Donald Trump’s lack of management style,” Deutsch said. “The Giuliani thing is interesting. We forget how, during the campaign, Giuliani was unhinged. If you show clips of him during the campaign, there’s a reason he didn’t get hired for all the jobs he wanted to.”
Deutsch, a former advertising executive who has known both Trump and Cohen for years, said the attorney disputes Giuliani’s account.
“I spoke with Michael Cohen yesterday, and his (account) about Giuliani was that he doesn’t know what he’s talking about,” Deutsch said. “He also said that, ‘Look, there are two people that know exactly what happened — myself and the president, and you’ll be hearing my side of the story,’ and he was obviously very frustrated by what had come out yesterday.”
Trump lawyer Michael Cohen “funneled it [the $130,000] through a law firm and the president repaid it,” Giuliani said, speaking with Trump’s advance knowledge.
“You’re going to do a couple of checks for $130,000,” Giuliani said.
“When I heard Cohen’s retainer of $35,000 when he was doing no work for the president, I said that’s how he’s repaying — that’s how he’s repaying it with a little profit and a little margin for paying taxes for Michael.”So Giuliani figured out the strategy for explaining how Trump paid Cohen (which lets Cohen off the hook, supposedly, and gives him reason not to flip, presumably)? Giuliani got the facts and crafted a legal defense to explain them? I agree that's how lawyers do it; you just don't announce that in public, because it pretty much destroys the legal reasoning you are using to defend the action. Legal reasoning is often ex post facto, but admitting that pretty much destroys that reasoning. Giuliani's statement is barely separable from the old chestnut of the son who killed his parents asking mercy of the court because he's an orphan. Giuliani is admitting he invented the defense that Trump did reimburse Cohen, when Trump did no such thing and probably never intended to do any such thing. What's funny is now Trump will say that's what happened, because the truth is whatever serves his interests in the moment.
“The president reimbursed that over a period of several months,” Giuliani said.
As Johnston asks, if this is what happened, why did it take several months? Why didn't Trump just write a check and be done with it? And was that $35,000.00 figure a monthly fee? Pretty good retainer for doing nothing, which raises another professional ethics issue for Cohen (so, no, Giuliani is not handing Cohen a life line, he's throwing Cohen an anchor). If it was monthly and Cohen wasn't doing any legal work, what the hell was Trump paying for? Silence?
This is the guy in charge of Trump's legal defense, not Emmet Flood. Flood may be a super-genius, but Giuliani claims to be the one negotiating with Mueller for the interview with Trump. Trump may have a team of lawyers, but only one lawyer can speak for the client to the investigator, the court, even the public. Right now Donald Trump wants that person to be Rudy Giuliani. Until that changes, Trump could have the greatest legal minds of history on his team: it wouldn't make any difference.