Tag Archives: Rudy Giuliani

Bannon offers spot-on comment on Sessions’s recusal

As a general rule I am not inclined to offer praise for a former Donald Trump policy adviser who has been portrayed as the Grim Reaper on “Saturday Night Live.”

However, Stephen Bannon has offered a spot-on analysis of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s decision to recuse himself from anything relating to the Russia meddling matter in the 2016 presidential election.

Bannon said Sessions made precisely the correct call in backing out. He added that former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani also would have made the same decision had they been put in that position.

Why? They all had direct involvement in the president’s campaign and, thus, could not possibly be trusted to conduct a thorough, fair and unbiased investigation into Russian meddling in the campaign. The question of the moment is whether the president obstructed justice by firing FBI Director James Comey and whether his campaign “colluded” with Russian operatives who had dug up dirt on Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Yet, Trump has been trashing Sessions for making that decision. He has said repeatedly he regrets selecting him as attorney general. Trump has disparaged the leadership at the Justice Department and the FBI.

The president doesn’t understand the complexities of conflict of interest. Sessions got it when he backed out of the Russia matter. Accordingly, Bannon — someone who hasn’t generally served the nation well — happens to be totally correct in his assessment that Trump is wrong to condemn the AG for acting properly.

I do have to chuckle when Bannon keeps insisting that he still admires and respects the president, saying he cherishes his relationship with him. He offers that caveat while reminding him publicly that he doesn’t understand why he is so damn wrong when he ridicules the attorney general.

What became of America’s Mayor?

Rudolph Giuliani used to be a revered public figure. He stood tall amid the rubble of Ground Zero in lower Manhattan and rallied a stricken city in the wake of the 9/11 terror attack on the World Trade Center.

Time magazine named him Person of the Year in 2001. It was richly deserved. Giuliani became America’s Mayor.

Then something happened to him. He decided to get involved in national politics. He dressed in drag to spoof something or someone. He ran for the Republican Party presidential nomination in 2008.

Rudy Giuliani has gotten a bit strange. If you saw his shtick at the 2016 Republican National Convention, then you understand my point. If you haven’t seen it, take a look:

His latest gig is as Donald J. Trump’s lawyer, representing the president as he does battle against what he calls the “witch hunt” being conducted by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Giuliani has managed to step all over Trump’s denial about hush money being paid to a porn star; he argues now that the president cannot be subpoenaed or indicted by the special counsel, even if Mueller produces evidence that Trump broke the law.

Giuliani has become a shill. He has behaved in a seriously unattractive manner as he defends the president against Mueller’s investigation in whether Trump obstructed justice or “colluded” with Russians who interfered in our 2016 presidential election.

Honestly, I much prefer the former Rudy Giuliani, the man who faced down terrorists while standing in the rubble.

The “new Rudy” is acting like a clown.

‘No one is above the law’?

I must presume that Rudy Giuliani is a good lawyer. He once was a federal prosecutor in New York before becoming mayor of the nation’s largest city.

He’s run for president a couple of times. He’s now back in private practice, representing clients, one of whom is the president of the United States, Donald J. Trump.

Now the ex-mayor says this, that Trump can ignore a subpoena issued by special counsel Robert Mueller if it comes. Yes, the president can ignore a federal subpoena, says Giuliani.

Hold on! I thought that “no one is above the law.” Presidents of the United States are citizens of the same country as you and I — and Rudy Giuliani. Aren’t they subject to the same demands that fall on the rest of us?

Giuliani has entered the fray involving Trump and Stormy Daniels, the porn queen who alleges having a fling with Trump back in 2006. Trump denies it. Yet his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, paid Daniels $130,000 to buy her silence about the alleged tumble — that Trump said didn’t occur.

Mueller is likely looking into it to determine if there’s possibly a campaign finance law violation.

He might summon Trump to answer questions from the grand jury.

Giuliani says the president doesn’t have to testify.

So, is the president above the law?

How do we keep the lies straight?

My head is continuing to spin on a swivel as I watch and listen to the explanations, excuses and walking back of statements regarding Donald Trump, Michael Cohen, Rudy Guiliani and Stormy Daniels.

Here is what is most confusing to me: Does a lawyer who works for his or her client do anything “on the client’s behalf” without telling the client?

I refer to that hush money payment that the lawyer, Michael Cohen, made to Stormy Daniels, the porn star who alleges having a one-night tryst with Donald Trump (Cohen’s client). Trump says he didn’t have sex with Daniels … but Cohen made the payment anyway.

Enter the former New York mayor, Giuliani, who now serves on the president’s legal team.

Trump has denied any knowledge of Cohen’s payment to Daniels to keep her quiet about the (alleged) tumble she took with Trump. Then the ex-mayor says Trump knew about it after all. Giuliani adds that Cohen made the payment without telling Trump precisely why he made it.

Huh? Do I have that essentially correct?

A lawyer worth a damn — and it’s not clear to me that Cohen fits that description — doesn’t shell out a six-figure payment to someone on the client’s behalf without telling him in the moment, if not beforehand. Isn’t that what good lawyers do?

I’m not a lawyer. That’s patently obvious. Another lawyer, though, is certainly paying careful attention to all of this. He’s a good one, too. That would be special counsel Robert Mueller, who has hired a legal team that is poring over all of the bobbing, weaving, dodging and ducking.

Stay alert, Mr. Special Counsel.

What? Rudy exposes another Trump lie?

The hits just keep on comin’, man.

Get a load of this latest offering from the man formerly known as America’s Mayor, Rudy Giuliani, who’s now taken on a new gig as Donald Trump’s lawyer tasked with negotiating a “quick” end to Robert Mueller’s investigation into “the Russia thing.”

Giuliani told Fox News’s Sean Hannity this week that Trump repaid another lawyer, Michael Cohen, who had forked over $130,000 to the porn star who allegedly had that one-night sexual tryst a dozen years ago with the man who would become president of the United States.

But … wait! Trump had said he didn’t know anything about the hush money Cohen paid to Stormy Daniels to keep her quiet about the fling she allegedly took with Trump in 2006 … which, of course, Trump has denied ever occurred.

So, where we do we stand?

Trump’s denial about Cohen’s payment to Stormy Daniels has been flushed away, apparently. Trump’s denial of the tryst is still on shaky ground, given that Cohen paid Daniels a substantial amount to shut her up about an event Trump said didn’t happen.

Does anyone think any of this is going to persuade Robert Mueller to end his probe quickly? Is this veteran lawyer and former FBI director going to call it quits on this probe just because Rudy Giuliani is on board with the rest of the Trump legal team?

I, um, think not.

How will the former America’s Mayor do this job?

I have no legal background. I spent a career writing news stories and offering commentary on issues of the day as a journalist.

There. That said, I am going to express some bafflement at Rudolf Giuliani’s decision to join Donald J. Trump’s legal team with the aim of finding a quick conclusion to a special counsel’s expansive and exhaustive examination of allegations of collusion involving the 2016 presidential election.

I stood behind the former New York mayor when he rose to the challenge of repairing his city that was shattered by the attack of 9/11.

Giuliani reportedly has plenty of shared history with Robert Mueller, the special counsel who’s been conducting the investigation. Indeed, Mueller became FBI director right before the 9/11 attack (see picture above).

But since that time, the former mayor has become a political pit bull. He is a fierce defender of Donald J. Trump, whose campaign is being examined by Mueller and his team of legal eagles.

I am having trouble understanding just how this man, Giuliani, intends to persuade Mueller to button up his examination quickly. The way I understand it, Mueller is a meticulous prosecutor, careful in the extreme to protect evidence gathered.

What’s more, Mueller already has indicted some individuals close to the president’s campaign. There appears to be much more ground to plow before he brings this probe to an end.

As Politico reports: Mueller likely still has much work to do. At a minimum, he must see through his case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who has pleaded not guilty to charges including bank and tax fraud and is set to face trial starting in July.

So, the question remains: How is the man once called “America’s Mayor” going to push Mueller to conclude at least portions of this investigation in a speedy fashion?

This layman out here in Flyover Country doesn’t see any way in the world that will happen. Robert Mueller will conclude this investigation at his own pace … if he’s given the chance to complete his work.

Giuliani is right: AG Sessions made the correct call

Hell must have frozen over … even in this oppressive heat!

How else does one explain that Rudolph Giuliani has spoken words of wisdom about U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions?

Giuliani said Sessions made the correct call when he decided to recuse himself from anything to do with the Russia controversy surrounding the Trump administration. I happen to agree that, yes, the AG did the right thing. He is too close to the president and could not possibly be considered an unbiased investigator into this matter of whether the Russians sought to meddle in the 2016 presidential election.

It’s entirely possible that Sessions is on his way out. Donald J. Trump might replace him. Giuliani sought to tamp down reports that he would succeed Sessions at Justice by endorsing his decision to recuse himself.

The president has done a masterful job of undercutting his top cop. It’s not that I consider Sessions all that trustworthy. It’s merely that Trump has yet again trampled all over one of his top Cabinet officials. He tweeted over the weekend that the “beleaguered” Sessions should be investigating Hillary Rodham Clinton. Good grief! Sessions is beleaguered because of the president himself! Trump told the New York Times he wouldn’t have selected Sessions if he knew that the AG would recuse himself from “the Russia thing.”

Trump goes after AG

As for the man formerly known as America’s Mayor, Giuliani, he wouldn’t be any better, other than he’s now on record as endorsing Sessions’s decision to bow out of the Russia matter.

And, yes, the chaos continues. Let’s all stay tuned.

More eyes, not all of them, turn to Mitt

rudy

Rudy Giuliani won’t be Donald J. Trump’s secretary of state.

The former New York City mayor and current Republican rabble rouser has pulled himself out of the running. It might have been the questions over his foreign-government contacts that persuaded him he might not have been confirmed by the Senate, even with all those fellow Republicans running the place.

So …

Who will get the nod at State?

Mitt Romney might be the frontrunner. Then again, it might be someone else.

I’m kinda pulling for Mitt, although I cannot yet define my reasons why I am.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/12/giuliani-pulls-name-from-contention-for-secretary-of-state-232439

He once led the Never Trump movement. He made that extraordinary 17-minute blistering of Trump, calling him a “fraud, phony and con man.” He was so tough that Trump’s campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, has lobbied publicly against her boss even considering him for the State job. Imagine that!

Why should Mitt get the job? He’s got street cred among foreign leaders. He’s a reasonable GOP conservative.

It appears he has been served his share of humble pie at that dinner date he had with Trump. The men must have talked about the State job and Mitt must have told Trump that he didn’t really and truly mean all those things he said. “I mean,” he could have said, “emotions were running high and it was, after all, a political speech. Politicians often say things they don’t really and truly mean, you know.”

I’m glad Rudy is out of the State Department picture, or so he says.

This is where I perhaps ought to caution everyone that Dr. Ben Carson — the renowned pediatric brain surgeon and former GOP presidential campaign rival of Trump’s — once declared he wasn’t qualified to run a federal agency.

So what did the president-elect do? He named him as the next housing and urban development secretary.

Let’s all stay tuned, shall we?