Discussions between Donald Trump and his former lawyer about a possible real estate deal in Russian Federation continued right up until the 2016 election, later than previously reported, according to Rudy Giuliani, Trump's current attorney.
Giuliani told NBC the President has told him he remembers having conversations with Cohen about the project, "probably up to, could be up to as far as October, November - our answers cover until the election", he said, referring to written answers given to Mueller's office.
This was the second time within the past week that Giuliani has walked back comments from the previous day. Giuliani told the Times that the president told him that conversations about the project were "going on from the day I announced to the day I won". "And I think it's remarkable that we're two years after the fact and just discovering it today".
"Anthony [Cormier] and I have a story coming stating that Michael Cohen was directed by President Trump himself to lie to Congress about his negotiations related to the Trump Moscow project", the email read.
President Donald Trump's legal team communicated with special counsel Robert Mueller's team about BuzzFeed's since-discredited bombshell report alleging that the president told former lawyer Michael Cohen to lie to Congress.
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"The fact of the investigation has nearly insulated Trump because we're all waiting for that final report, the package that's going to tie all these dots together, as opposed to, as you say, reacting to stunning revelations one by one that should be president-ending, term-ending".
He and other federal prosecutors have secured convictions or guilty pleas from several key figures in Trump's orbit, including former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, campaign aide Rick Gates, former national security adviser Michael Flynn, former foreign affairs adviser George Papadopoulos and Cohen.
BuzzFeed is standing by its story, and its editor-in-chief, Ben Smith, said in a statement, "We stand by our reporting and the sources who informed it, and we urge the special counsel to make clear what he's disputing".
"So anytime during that period they could've talked about it", Giuliani said.
The president's attorney added that the scope of the questions from Mueller "went to the end of 2016, but that doesn't mean the Trump Tower proposal goes until then".
On Thursday, he issued a statement aimed at clarifying a TV interview from the night before in which he appeared to leave open the possibility of collusion between Russian Federation and members of Trump's presidential campaign. Cohen, unlike in the Southern of District of NY case against him, did not say that Trump "directed" him to commit a crime.