Immediately after telling CNN's Jake Tapper that Paul Manafort sharing polling data with his Ukrainian associates wasn't criminal, Trump's lawyer did his best to smear Michael Cohen's father-in-law by suggesting he has mob ties there.
January 20, 2019

During a wild appearance with CNN's Jake Tapper, Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani not only tried to justify the actions of his boss if the BuzzFeed report about him telling his former fixer, Michael Cohen to lie to Congress is ultimately found to be true, he also helped Trump with some witness intimidation by going after Cohen's father-in-law, and implying he has ties to the Ukrainian mob.

Irony of ironies, this happened just after Giuliani told Tapper that there was nothing wrong with Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort sharing polling data with the Ukrainians, and that all he was doing was "sucking up" to them because he wanted to get paid:

TAPPER: Why do you think he shared that information?

GIULIANI: I think he owed them money, a lot of money. And I think he was sucking up to them, sucking up to his clients, making them feel important. The sharing of polling information...

TAPPER: I think they owed him money. Right.


GIULIANI: Oh, I'm sorry, other way around.

TAPPER: They owed him money.

GIULIANI: So he wanted to get paid. So he wanted to get paid. You're correct. You're correct. They owed him money. And he wanted to get paid.

They were -- had -- he had a personal relationship with them, independent of the campaign. Should he have done it? Absolutely not. Bad judgment? Yes. A crime? Sharing polling data? Give me a break. No way.

TAPPER: Well, we will see.

GIULIANI: People give out that internal polling data to -- people give out that internal polling data to impress people. They give it out for fund-raising. They give it out just to have people on your side.

They give it out to affect you guys in the press.

TAPPER: Yes, I don't know why he did it.

GIULIANI: That's what they use it for.

TAPPER: I don't know why he did it.


GIULIANI: I don't -- I don't -- but go ask him.

TAPPER: You told -- well, he's in prison.

GIULIANI: The president didn't know about it.

We'll see how long it takes before he admits Trump did know about it, but it was okay if he did.

Tapper then moved onto whether or not Trump is guilty of obstruction of justice, to which Giuliani responded by going after Micheal Cohen's father-in-law, and accusing him of having mob ties. Oh the irony considering who he's working for now.

TAPPER: OK. But let me ask you a question.

You're talking about these threats that the president did not commit, and as to why that would be inappropriate, but the president has not done that.

The president is repeatedly calling publicly, on Judge Jeanine's show, on Twitter, he is repeatedly calling for an investigation into Michael Cohen's father-in-law ahead of Michael Cohen's testimony before Congress.

By your own definition, isn't that obstruction...

GIULIANI: No, it's defending himself.

TAPPER: ... or attempting to intimidate a witness?


Now, if you -- if you made that obstruction, I can't defend anybody.

TAPPER: To say...


GIULIANI: You're telling me...

TAPPER: ... this guy is testifying against me, his father-in-law should be...


GIULIANI: No, wait, now. Wait, wait. Jake, Jake, we are so -- we are so distorting the system of justice just to get Donald Trump, it's going to hurt us so much.

TAPPER: So, it's OK to go after the father-in-law?

GIULIANI: Now -- now, of course it is, if the father-in-law is a criminal.

And the Southern District of New York, in the plea, wanted him to go to jail and said he's lying. They don't buy the special counsel's approach. They say he's lying because he's holding back information that is far more damaging than the lies that he is sharing with them now.

Now, what is that information about?


GIULIANI: It's about his father-in-law. We talked about Ukrainians. His father-in-law is a Ukrainian.

TAPPER: That's not a crime.

GIULIANI: His father-in-law has millions and millions -- of course it's not. I'm telling you, he comes from the Ukraine.

This reason that is important is, he may have ties to something called organized crime.

TAPPER: Because he's Ukrainian?

GIULIANI: Michael Cohen is refusing -- well, there's an organized crime group in Ukraine, organized crime group in Russia.

TAPPER: Organized crime everywhere, organized crime in Brooklyn, organized crime in the Bronx.

I mean, you know, that -- that -- I think that's making the leap.


GIULIANI: Oh, well, that's OK. He can have ties to organized crime. They can have bank fraud. That's just fine.

When somebody testifies against your client, you go out, and you look at what's wrong with them. Why are they doing it, if they're not telling the truth?


GIULIANI: He's not -- he's doing it because he's afraid to testify against his father-in-law, because the repercussions for that will be far worse than the repercussions for lying here...

TAPPER: I think...

GIULIANI: ... because now he gets applauded in New York, where the crazy anti-Trumpers applaud for him.

TAPPER: So, I think...

GIULIANI: He goes and testifies -- he goes and testifies against some people -- let me finish.


GIULIANI: He goes and testifies against some people that are possibly in organized crime, they ain't going to be applauding for him when he goes into a restaurant in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, believe me.

TAPPER: I think...

GIULIANI: I did this for 15 years of my life.

TAPPER: I think...

GIULIANI: This guy is lying. It's disgraceful...


GIULIANI: ... that you're relying on Cohen. It's disgraceful that the Democrats in Congress...

TAPPER: I'm not relying on -- I'm not relying on Cohen.

GIULIANI: ... would put a liar like -- and BuzzFeed got in trouble yesterday...

TAPPER: I'm not relying on Cohen for anything.

GIULIANI: ... because they relied on Michael Cohen.

Well, don't. Don't.

TAPPER: I'm just questioning whether it's appropriate for the president to single out a private citizen...

GIULIANI: It is...

TAPPER: ... whose son-in-law...

GIULIANI: ... to defend him...

TAPPER: OK. Well, you...

GIULIANI: He's not a private citizen. He's a private citizen lying about him, trying to get him impeached. TAPPER: No, the father -- I'm talking about the father-in-law.

GIULIANI: And I'm defending him.

TAPPER: I'm talking about the father-in-law.

GIULIANI: That's a -- that's -- the father-in-law, we happen to know -- and just go read the Southern District report.


GIULIANI: The man was involved in criminal activity with Michael Cohen.

TAPPER: That's all...

GIULIANI: And Michael Cohen is withholding it, because to testify about that would be very dangerous to the father-in-law and Michael Cohen.


GIULIANI: And, instead, he's going after the president, which the special counsel and all the liberals are applauding him for.

TAPPER: Mayor Giuliani...

GIULIANI: That's what is going on. That is a defense...

TAPPER: ... thank you for your time.

GIULIANI: ... to a criminal accusation. And, if we can't do that, we're not in America.

TAPPER: Thank you so much for your time, sir. We appreciate it.

GIULIANI: Thank you.

TAPPER: We are still in America. I appreciate your saying that.

GIULIANI: Thank you. That's -- but I got a chance to say it. And I appreciate that.

TAPPER: Thank you, sir.

Trump and now Giuliani are going to continue witness tampering, because they know the Republicans in the Senate are going to protect them from having to face any consequences for their actions. They were warned by House Democrats not to interfere with their oversight duties, and both of them continue to ignore those warnings.

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