Donald Trump's new lawyer gave investigators fresh leads, say analysts

Donald Trump's new lawyer gave investigators fresh leads, say analysts

Hours after President Donald Trump said his lawyer Rudy Giuliani did not have "his facts straight", the former NY mayor issued a statement on Friday saying hush money paid to an adult-film star before the 2016 election was not an election law violation.

The former mayor of NY and presidential candidate hit the airwaves this week to lay out several new facts about the President's relationship with Michael Cohen - namely, that he knew about and reimbursed Cohen's payment to Stormy Daniels.

President Trump addresses reporters as he leaves for Dallas to speak at the National Rifle Association convention on Friday.

As he left the White House on Friday, Mr Trump told reporters when asked about his new attorney: "He started yesterday".

Donald Trump's personal lawyer and self-described "fixer", Michael Cohen said when the allegations first came out past year, that, in 2016, he paid Stormy Daniels (real name, Stephanie Clifford) $130,000 out of his own pocket to sign an NDA. The repayment claim goes against what Trump and his lawyer Michael Cohen have previously said.

Mr Giuliani, who signed on to Donald Trump's legal team last month, "just started a day ago", Mr Trump said. "I believe that's what Michael said", Hannity followed up.

"We're not changing any stories", Trump said prior to boarding Air Force One.

Friday President Trump said Giuliani, who is the newest member of his legal team, is still learning. He has denied that he paid any hush money to Daniels and has denied the cheating allegations altogether.

It was a classic he said, she said (where the "she" is a porn star, yet infinitely more credible than the "he" who is the president).

It was not immediately clear when Trump learned of the payment, which Cohen made in October 2016, at a time when news media outlets were poised to pay her for her story about an alleged affair with Trump in 2006. "And to be bringing up that kind of crap, and to be bringing up witch hunts all the time - that's all you want to talk about", Trump said. "Were you talking about the facts or were you talking about the law?"

It came as Mr Trump said he would "love to" speak to special counsel Robert Mueller in the Russian Federation probe but tells reporters he wants to ensure he'd be "treated fairly".

Giuliani said that Trump had paid Cohen $460,000 or $470,000 in total over several months.

In that case, the payment would have been a campaign contribution which would have to be publicly reported and above the the legal limit of $US2,700 that Cohen could have given, making it a campaign finance violation.

On Friday morning, Trump seemed to undercut Giuliani, telling reporters that Giuliani would "get his facts straight".

He added that previous comments had reflected his "understanding of these matters", not Trump's.



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