Trump and Giuliani planned Stormy Daniels revelation without consulting White House staff: report

Trump and Giuliani planned Stormy Daniels revelation without consulting White House staff: report

President TrumpDonald John TrumpProtesters tear down statue of Christopher Columbus in Baltimore 'Independence Day' star Bill Pullman urges Americans to wear a 'freedom mask' in July 4 PSA Protesters burn American flag outside White House after Trump's July Fourth address MORE and his newest lawyer, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, disclosed that Trump had repaid his personal attorney Michael Cohen for a $130,000 payment to adult-film star Stormy Daniels without informing White House staff first, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Giuliani's admission, that Trump reimbursed Cohen for the payment after weeks of White House statements claiming the president knew nothing about the arrangement, caught many in the White House off guard but was planned in advance by Giuliani and the president, according to the Journal.


“That was money that was paid by his lawyer, the way I would do, out of his law firm funds or whatever funds, it doesn’t matter. The president reimbursed that over a period of several months,” Giuliani told Fox's Sean Hannity on Wednesday.

That interview shocked the White House and left the West Wing "completely frozen," one aide told the Journal.

“People in the White House are a little concerned about what looks like the roller coaster ride ahead,” another White House official told the newspaper. Giuliani just jointed the president's legal team in April.

Others, including former Trump aide David Bossie, chalked up Giuliani's admission to "media savvy" in an interview with the Journal.

“You get a lot of different value added with Rudy Giuliani. You get his legal and intellectual abilities, but you also get his media savvy," Bossie says.

Trump himself went on Twitter to clarify his arrangement with Cohen after Giuliani's interview, stating that the campaign funds had no role in the payment to Daniels. Critics have questioned whether the $130,000 payment to Daniels constituted an unreported campaign donation.

"Mr. Cohen, an attorney, received a monthly retainer, not from the campaign and having nothing to do with the campaign, from which he entered into, through reimbursement, a private contract between two parties, known as a non-disclosure agreement, or NDA," Trump tweeted. "Money from the campaign, or campaign contributions, played no roll (sic) in this transaction."