WASHINGTON — President Trump no longer denies knowledge of a payment made to Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about affair she says she had with him years before he became president. Mr. Trump denies the affair.
His version of events related to the payment began changing in a late night television appearance by one of his newest legal advisers, Rudy Giuliani.
"He didn’t know the details of this until we knew the details of it … which was a couple of weeks ago," Giuliani told Fox News’ Sean Hannity. "Maybe not even a couple weeks ago, maybe 10 days ago."
Guiliani was describing what the president knew about a $130,000 payment to Daniels to gain her silence days before the 2016 election. That payment was arranged by Mr. Trump’s self-described fixer Michael Cohen.
Also on Fox, Giuliani said Mr. Trump personally repaid Cohen for the deal.
"They funneled it through a law firm and the president repaid it," he said.
Thursday, Cohen ignored questions from reporters.
Giuliani’s revelation contradicts what the president said on Air Force One in April.
A reporter asked the president if he knew about the payment, in which Mr. Trump responded "no."
A reporter asked why did Cohen make it if there was no truth to her allegations?
"You have to ask Michael Cohen," Mr. Trump replied. "Michael Cohen is my attorney you’ll have to ask Michael."
Mr. Trump also said he didn’t know where Cohen got the money.
In a series of tweets earlier Thursday, the commander in chief struck a decidedly different tone. He wrote the nondisclosure agreement with Daniels was common for celebrities and used to "stop the false and extortionist accusations made by her about an affair."
"It’s an outrage frankly that [Trump] would stand on Air Force One on videotape and blatantly lie to the American people," Daniels’ lawyer Michael Avenatti said. "The president and his advisers are making this up as they go along. They realize that they are in a heap load of trouble."
Also breaking news Thursday, there were reports about a possible wiretap between the White House and Cohen.
Two federal officials tell CBS News there are no wiretaps, audio recordings or transcripts of Cohen’s phone conversations — including any calls he may have had with the president. CBS News has learned that federal investigators have been monitoring some of Cohen’s communications, including email accounts.
Giuliani told CBS News earlier Thursday that the treatment of Cohen was heavy handed and called on the Justice Department to close the Russia investigation.