Published: Sun, May 13, 2018

Giuliani All In On Claims Trump Was 'Surprised' By Cohen Access-Peddling

Giuliani All In On Claims Trump Was 'Surprised' By Cohen Access-Peddling

Brian Fung and Tony Romm, The Washington Post •.

On Friday, AT&T has called its contract with Cohen a "big mistake", and forced out the executive who had arranged it. Trump's lawyer, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, has said Trump did not know of Cohen's deals with these corporations.

The email comes at a critical time for AT&T.

"There is certainly plenty AT&T would like to get out of the Trump administration", noted the far-left media outlet Vox, adding that AT&T is now attempting to get a $85 billion merger with Time Warner approved through the Trump administration.

Stephenson's apology was also an extraordinary admission from a company that has long run one of Washington's largest and most sophisticated lobbying shops and donates millions of dollars each year to hundreds of candidates on both sides of the aisle.

The Justice Department filed an antitrust lawsuit in November 2017 to block AT&T's proposed purchase of Time Warner.

The corporate's Washington D.C. group "employed Cohen for simply that objective" and agreed to pay him $600,000 on a one-year settlement.

Giuliani seemed oblivious to those concerns when he told HuffPost on Friday that "the president denied the merger. Such a disgrace in reporting!" he wrote.

On Jan. 12, 2017, Cohen and AT&T's chief executive, Randall Stephenson, were both seen visiting Trump Tower in NY, days before the contract with Essential Consultants was signed.

Fox News anchor and former top strategist for the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom, Steve Hilton, demanded an apology from Donald Trump fixer Michael Cohen on Saturday.

"I haven't talked to him in detail except for the first day it came out.

I think he's going to get himself in serious trouble".

"We didn't engage with them".

The payments were made to Essential Consultants, a company created by Cohen one month before the 2016 US presidential election.

Meanwhile, Giuliani attracted scrutiny on Friday when he referred to Michael Avenatti, the lawyer representing Daniels, as a "pimp" in an interview with Business Insider.

However, Giuliani said he believes Cohen does not deserve the criticism he is taking from some in the media and in political circles.

Stephenson said the vetting process in Quinn's office "clearly failed" and vowed AT&T would "do better". Such conduct is absolutely wrong.

AT&T's head lobbyist, Bob Quinn, who oversaw the hiring of Cohen, is retiring, the memo said. But Weinstein says the judgement used to hire Cohen, of all people, is bad optics for the company. "Novartis paid Mr. Cohen tons of of 1000's greater than it paid its big-shot lobbyists in Washington". "Whatever lobbying was done didn't reach the president", Giuliani also said. "But that's factually accurate and it ought to carry more weight in this situation". Trump had recently been quoted saying "I'm not supposed to be involved in the Justice Department", adding, "I'm not supposed to be doing the kinds of things I would LOVE to be doing, and I'm very frustrated by it". Quinn did not respond to a request for comment.

"[Trump] did not interfere with the Justice Department going ahead with the case, which he had every right and power to do", he said, "and other presidents have done in anti-trust cases". "It's clear to me what he sold them", he said. The lawyer didn't provide any evidence to back up these claims, and Cohen's attorneys have disputed some of them.

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