Rudy Giuliani said President Trump will deny he told former FBI Director James Comey to drop the investigation into onetime national security adviser Michael Flynn if he’s interviewed by the special counsel’s prosecutors.
“There was no conversation about Michael Flynn. The president didn’t find out that Comey believed there was until about, I think, it was February when it supposedly took place,” Giuliani said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
“Memo came out in May. And in between, Comey testified under oath, in no way had he been obstructed at any time,” he continued. “Then all of the sudden in May he says he felt obstructed. He felt pressured by that comment, ‘you should go easy on Flynn.’ So we maintain the president didn’t say that.”
Comey testified on Capitol Hill in June 2017 that during his February White House meeting with Trump the president questioned
him about his loyalty and brought up the investigation into Flynn.
“I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go,” Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee, quoting Trump. “He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.”
If Trump agrees to be interviewed by Robert Mueller’s investigators, Giuliani said the president will flatly deny he told Comey to “let this go.”
“They already know that,” Giuliani said. “Why are they asking us to repeat what they already know under oath?”
Giuliani and other members of Trump’s legal team have been negotiating for months with the special counsel over details of a possible interview with the president and have said the president should not have to answer questions about obstruction of justice.
Giuliani’s Sunday comments seem to clash with remarks he made last month on ABC’s “This Week” that Trump did ask Comey to drop the investigation.
Asked during the ABC interview that Comey said he understood Trump’s statement as a directive, Giuliani said as a prosecutor himself, he has been asked many times, “Can you give the man a break?”
“He didn’t direct him to do that,” Giuliani told the news show. “What he said was, can you, can you give him a break.”
Trump fired Comey, who was then heading up the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, in May 2017 – a week later the Department of Justice appointed Mueller special counsel.
Flynn stepped down from his White House position in February 2017 after news reports revealed he misled administration officials, including Vice President Pence, about his communications with a Russian ambassador during the campaign.
He pleaded guilty in December 2017 to lying to the FBI after being charged by Mueller and is now cooperating in the special counsel’s probe.