GIULIANI downplays his recent praise for Michael Cohen, who he now characterizes as a serial liar: "George Washington would have said that about Benedict Arnold at a certain point of time." pic.twitter.com/dldMO029ye— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) July 30, 2018
Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani passionately dubbed Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney, a traitor who is apparently no better than Brutus, Iago or Benedict Arnold.
It should be noted this is the same series of interviews in which Giuliani said collusion with the Russians is “not a crime.”
In a chaotic string of interviews with Fox News and CNN, Giuliani railed against what a turncoat Cohen had become as he discussed Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
Fed up with being Trump’s punching bag, Cohen, whose offices and home were raided by the FBI in April after a recommendation by Mueller who was concerned about his possible campaign finance law violations, has repeatedly said he is willing to testify about the Trump campaign and its links with the Kremlin, which allegedly resulted in the Russians hacking the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
Last week, Cohen’s lawyer released a tape of the attorney allegedly discussing payment to Playboy model Karen McDougal, who claims Trump had an affair with her, something that the president denies. The revelation was followed by Cohen’s assertion that Trump knew of the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting between key Trump officials and several Russians — one of whom was a Kremlin-connected lawyer — in advance. The meeting was reportedly disguised by Trump himself to look like it was about Russian adoption, when in reality; it was about finding some dirt on rival Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
In his interviews, Giuliani said he doled out information himself in order to counteract the reportedly misleading media reports, which were, according to him, being pushed by Cohen.
“The guy is unethical, he’s a scumbag, he’s a horrible person,” Giuliani said on CNN, when he was challenged that once he called Cohen an “honest man.”
He said at the time he did not know that Cohen had tapes of his business dealings with the president, but said that out of the more than 180 tapes seized by investigators — most of which he said Cohen doctored himself — only one featured the president’s voice.
“What the hell are you picking on me for saying he was an honest, honorable man when I didn’t know he had recorded a conversation with his client?' Giuliani snapped on CNN. “He was shaking people down for money; he was lying about what was on a tape and manipulating, doctoring tapes?”
Then, invoking the name of one of history’s biggest traitors, Giuliani attacked Cohen’s credibility.
“George Washington would have said that about Benedict Arnold at a certain point in time,” he said of Cohen’s alleged duplicity.
Arnold was a high-ranking solider in Washington’s army who made a conspiracy to hand over the fortifications at the West Point to the British in 1780.
“I didn’t know any of that. George Washington didn’t know Benedict Arnold was a traitor,” Giuliani said.
When asked what it says about Trump’s judgment that a man who was once so close to him has now turned against him, Giuliani invoked two figures from Shakespearean literature.
“He turned out to have a close friend betray him, like Iago betrayed Othello, like Brutus put the last knife into Caesar. It happens in life, that you get double-crossed,” he said.
Giuliani also repeatedly berated Mueller’s investigation team for alleged bias against the Trump administration and said the special counsel was in “bad faith” over negotiation for an interview with Trump. He said the Trump team offered some terms for such a session 10 days ago, however, it did not hear back from Mueller’s team.
At the end of the interview, which Giuliani expressed was “turning petty,” the Trump lawyer said, “I think the odds are against [an interview] but I wouldn’t be shocked if [Trump] wants to do it.”
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: Reuters