Former NYC Mayor and current attorney for the President, Rudy Giuliani, said today that President Trump does not have to comply with a subpoena from special counsel Robert Mueller’s office, if one were issued, and may possibly invoke the Fifth Amendment if he were to speak with Mueller.
Giuliani made the statements this morning on ABC’s This Week.
Asked whether he would recommend to the President that he sit for an interview with Mueller, Giuliani said he would not. “Not after the way they’ve acted,” he said. “I came into this case with the desire to do that, and they just keep convincing me not to do that.”
“They’re trying to trap– you couldn’t put a lawyer on the show who wants to keep his law license to tell you he should testify,” he said.
Giuliani made headlines this week when he said the President had paid back $130,000 the Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, had made to a woman to keep her from discussing an alleged affair she had with the President in 2006 in the closing weeks of the presidential election.
Giuliani said during an interview that President Trump paid Cohen a retainer of $35,000 to cover “expenses” for him. “I said, ‘That’s how he’s repaying it, with a little profit and a little margin for paying taxes,’” Giuliani said, implying that the retainer was cover for a fund set up to pay individuals off with damaging stories about the President.
Mr. Trump had long denied knowledge of any payment to the woman, as well as the affair itself.
In comments on Friday the President said that Giuliani wasn’t aware of the specifics of the case when he made those comments.
“He really has his heart into it, he’s working hard, he’s learning the subject matter…he is a great guy. He knows it’s a witch hunt, that’s what he knows…he started yesterday, he’ll get his facts straight. He’s a great guy,” the President said of Giuliani.
Giuliani would issue a follow-up statement in order to clarify his statements that seemingly contradicted the President’s long-standing defense. “The payment was made to resolve a personal and false allegation in order to protect the President’s family. It would have been done in any event, whether he was a candidate or not,” Giuliani said.
“My references to timing were not describing my understanding of the President’s knowledge, but instead, my understanding of these matters,” he added.
Mr. Giuliani joined the President’s legal team less than two weeks ago, an attempt to serve as a go-between between Mr. Trump and Robert Mueller, whom Giuliani has known for decades through their work together in federal law enforcement.
“I’m doing it because I hope we can negotiate an end to this for the good of the country and because I have high regard for the president and for Bob Mueller,” Giuliani said when his hiring was announced.
“[Giuliani] wants to get this matter quickly resolved,” the President said at the time.
Photo by Marc Nozell via Wikimedia Commons