The Trump Presidency: NYT: Trump recorded discussing secret payment

Lester Mason
July 22, 2018

Trump's current personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, confirmed to the Times that the Cohen tape existed, but said it showed the president had done nothing wrong.

He added, "the good news is that your favorite president did nothing wrong".

Trump did not mention Cohen by name but appeared to be responding to reports that Cohen recorded a conversation with him in September 2016 in which they discussed possible payments to former Playboy model Karen McDougal - who claimed she had an affair with Trump in 2006.

The "break-in" referenced by Trump was actually the raiding by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents in April of the Manhattan office and residences of Trump's then-personal attorney, Michael Cohen, who is being investigated for potential bank and election-law crimes. Staci Bivens has this report. "When all of this evidence ultimately comes to light, and I hope that it will. this is going to spell a significant problem for Michael Cohen and a larger problem for the president". "Even more inconceivable that a lawyer would tape a client".

The former Playboy model said that after their first sexual encounter, Trump tried to offer her money.

McDougal has said she began a almost year-long affair with Trump in 2006 shortly after his wife, Melania, gave birth.

After The New York Times first revealed the existence of the tape - and Giuliani claimed the tape was exculpatory evidence that did no harm to Trump -- his legal team chose to remove any protection relating to the attorney-client relationship on this specific matter. Citing a person familiar with the recording, The Washington Post reported Friday that in it, Cohen and Trump discussed a plan to purchase the rights to McDougal's story from Pecker's company for about $150,000. Cohen's critical comments about Trump apparently started after the president's disastrous press conference with Russian president Vladimir Putin on Monday in Helsinki.

Laws on taping private conversations differ from state to state, and it is not clear where Cohen recorded Trump.

Cohen had made a practice of recording telephone conversations, unbeknownst to those with whom he was speaking.

The recording was part of a large collection of documents and electronic records seized earlier this year by federal authorities from Michael Cohen, the longtime Trump fixer.

NY law allows one party to a conversation to tape it without the other knowing.

Federal prosecutors in NY are investigating Cohen for possible bank and tax fraud, and for possible campaign law violations linked to a $130,000 payment to Daniels and other matters related to Trump's campaign, a person familiar with the investigation has told Reuters. As part of the deal, McDougal signed a nondisclosure agreement that prevented her from revealing the affair.

In her lawsuit against AMI, McDougal said she was happy when AMI bought her story then did not publish it, because she was not anxious for publicity.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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