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Rudy Giuliani on Fox News insists Trump did not violate campaign finance laws

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Rudy Giuliani appeared Saturday on Fox News' "Justice with Judge Jeanine," insisting that President Trump did not violate any campaign finance laws. But Giuliani, who recently joined Mr. Trump's legal team, did not clarify if Mr. Trump repaid his personal attorney, Michael Cohen, or when Mr. Trump knew about Cohen's payment to an adult film actress after Mr. Trump said Friday "virtually everything said has been said incorrectly."

When asked by Jeanine Pirro to "clear up" what the "president knew or didn't know -- what he paid or did not pay," Giuliani did not answer the question. He said "sure, the end result is real simple. That's all we are interested in. The President of the United States did not in any way violate the campaign finance law."

At the center of the debate is a $130,000 payment Cohen made to the adult film actress Stormy Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, to stay quiet about an alleged affair between Daniels and Mr. Trump in 2006. Cohen paid Daniels through a shell company. 

Trump walks back Giuliani's comments on Stormy Daniels payment 02:41

Mr. Trump has denied knowing about the payment, but on Wednesday, Giuliani told Fox News' Sean Hannity that Mr. Trump reimbursed Daniels. Mr. Trump has denied knowing about the payment. 

Mr. Trump tweeted Thursday he paid Cohen through a monthly retainer, it had nothing to do with the campaign and it was no with campaign money. But on Friday, Mr. Trump said "virtually everything said has been said incorrectly." Mr. Trump said Giuliani "will get his facts straight." 

Giuliani released a statement Friday to clarify his comments, saying "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." The distinction matters because if the payment was made to help Mr. Trump's candidacy, it could be considered a violation of campaign finance laws.

Giuliani claimed Saturday that "any campaign finance expert" would say that if Mr. Trump had repaid Cohen for "another purpose other than just campaigns and even if it was the campaign purposes ... If it was to save his family, to save embarrassment -- it's not a campaign donation." Giuliani then said Mr. Trump "reimbursed it fully with a payment of $35,000 a month, that paid for that and other expenses. No need to go beyond that. Case over."

Pirro asked if Giuliani was "talking about the facts or were you talking about the law," Giuliani said the law. Calling himself an "expert in campaign finance law," Giuliani said he had only been on the campaign for two weeks, "virtually one day in comparison to other people." Mr. Trump said Friday that Giuliani "just started a day ago," although Giuliani joined the legal team last month. 

Giuliani also said he believes special counsel Robert Mueller has targeted former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort because "maybe they think Manafort's somebody they can flip faster." Manafort has been charged with more than 30 counts of tax and bank fraud. Giuliani parroted Mr. Trump's language about the investigation, calling it a "witch hunt." 

Giuliani described Mueller as a "clown," saying "I hired that clown." 

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