RUDY & THE TRUTH

President Donald Trump was hit with cheers and jeers in the Hamptons this weekend, while his attorney, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, wrestled with the truth. Governor Andrew Cuomo is still taking heat for his comments about America in decline. We have the latest on the news shaking up the Empire State.

Aired on August 20, 2018.

TRANSCRIPT

GOOD EVENING AND WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS.'

I'M JENNA FLANAGAN.

WE BEGIN TONIGHT WITH PRESIDENT TRUMP'S RETURN TO NEW YORK VISITING THE HAMPTONS THIS WEEKEND FOR A FUND-RAISER HOSTED BY ONE OF HIS CLOSEST FRIENDS AND NATHAN'S FAMOUS HOT DOG BUSINESS.

DOZENS OF PROTESTERS LINED THE STREETS OF SOUTH HAMPTON AND WEST SOUTH HAMPTON WAITING FOR THE MOTORCADE.

HIS TRIP COINCIDED WITH A REMARKABLE CLAIM FROM HIS LAWYER, RUDY GUILIANI.

IN AN INTERVIEW WITH 'MEET THE PRESS,' THE FORMER 'NEW YORK TI TIMES' -- FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR SAID THIS.

LOOK, I'M NOT GOING TO BE RUSHED TO HAVING HIM TESTIFY SO HE GETS TRAPPED INTO PERJURY.

WHEN YOU TELL ME HE'S GOING TO TESTIFY BECAUSE HE WILL TELL THE TRUTH AND SHOULDN'T WORRY.

THAT'S SILLY BECAUSE IT'S SOMEBODY'S VERSION OF THE TRUTH AND NOT THE TRUTH.

HE DIDN'T HAVE A COMBINATION --

TRUTH IS TRUTH.

NO, IT ISN'T.

TRUTH ISN'T TRUTH.

TO HELP US MAKE SENSE OF ALL OF US, WE'D LIKE TO WELCOME BACK JONATHAN, EDITOR OF 'CITY AND STATE MAGAZINE.

WELCOME.

RUDY GUILIANI, SOMETIMES TRUTH IS NOT TRUTH EXCEPT WHEN IT'S TRUTH.

CAN YOU HELP US PARSE OUT THE FORMER MAYOR'S WORDS.

CLEARLY, TRUTH IS TRUTH CONTRARY TO WHAT HE SAID.

I THINK THERE WAS A POINT BEHIND WHAT HE WAS SAYING, THE DISCUSSION WAS ABOUT THE SPECIAL COUNSEL, WHAT THEY WOULD BE ABLE TO INTERVIEW PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP.

DURING HIS ARGUMENT WAS THAT IF YOU WERE TO SIT DOWN AND BE INTERVIEWED, THINGS HE WOULD SAY MIGHT BE CONTRADICTORY TO JAMES COMEY, THE FORMER FBI DIRECTOR SAID, HE SAID-SHE SAID.

TO SAY TRUTH IS NOT TRUTH, I THINK THAT ONLY REALLY HURTS THE MESSAGE.

BUT THERE WAS ALSO A LARGER SERIOUS ISSUE TO BE DISCUSSED.

THAT WAS THE FACT THAT THIS WEEKEND, WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL, DONALD McGAHN WAS FOUND OUT HE WAS COOPERATING WITH MUELLER INCREDIBLY EXTENSIVELY.

SURE.

THAT GOES BACK TO AN EARLIER DECISION THE PREVIOUS TEAM MADE WITH THE PRESIDENT SAYING WE WILL COOPERATE COMPLETELY.

DON McGANN IS WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL, IMPORTANT TO NOTE HE'S COUNSEL FOR THE WHITE HOUSE, NOT A PERSONAL LAWYER FOR THE PRESIDENT.

HE HAS TO DEFEND THE PRESIDENCY.

THERE WAS AN INDICATION HE WAS WORRIED HE MIGHT GET THROWN UNDER THE BUS AND MIGHT GET BLAMED FOR THINGS.

HE HAD EVERY INCENTIVE TO SIT DOWN AND TALK WITH THE SPECIAL COUNSEL AND REVEALED QUITE A BIT.

I THINK 30 HOURS.

I BELIEVE IT WAS 30 HOURS.

SEVERAL INTERVIEWS.

GIVEN THE FACT THAT IT'S STILL NOT CLEAR WHAT IT WAS HE WAS ABLE TO GIVE BECAUSE HE'S NOT A PERSONAL LAWYER TO THE PRESIDENT BUT LAWYER TO THE WHITE HOUSE, IS THERE A REASON WHY WE'RE SEEING WHAT SEEMS TO BE A PANICKED REACTION OUT OF THE WHITE HOUSE TO THE FACT HE SAT DOWN?

SURE.

THE TRUMP LEGAL TEAM WAS UNAWARE OF WHAT EXACTLY AND MAY CURRENTLY BE UNAWARE EXACTLY WHAT McGANN SAID IN THESE INTERVIEWS.

WE GET A SENSE HE DID TALK ABOUT SOME OF THE FIRINGS, FLYNN, THE NATIONAL SATURDAY ADVISOR, COMEY HIMSELF, THE EFFORTS BLOCKED TO FIRE MUELLER, WHICH WOULD HAVE BEEN REALLY PROBLEMATIC.

AGAIN, SPECIAL COUNSEL WOULD NOT HAVE HAD ALL THESE DETAILS IF NOT FOR THEIR INTERVIEW WITH McGANN.

WHETHER OR NOT THE PRESIDENT SITS DOWN WITH SPECIAL COUNSEL MUELLER WE WILL FIND OUT.

WE DO KNOW THE PRESIDENT HAS BEEN TWEETING ABOUT SPECIAL COUNSEL MUELLER.

IN THE LATEST BARRAGE, WE SHOULD SAY, OF TWEETS.

A LOT OF THE SAME, HE'S GOING ON THE ATTACK, TRYING TO UNDERMINE AND UNDERSTAND CUT MUELLER AND SAYING THERE ARE VERSIONS THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN DONE INTO HILLARY CLINTON.

THEN HE PIVOTED AND TALKED ABOUT SECURITY CLEARANCES HE'S BEEN REVOKING AND HE MAY REVOKE ANOTHER SECURITY CLEARANCE AS A POLITICAL ATTACK, POLITICIZING THIS STEP THAT REALLY A PRESIDENT HASN'T DONE BEFORE.

IT'S MORE OF THE SAME.

ATTACK, TRY TO UNDERMINE, TRY TO CAST DOUBT ON THIS INVESTIGATION.

I DO WANT TO BRING THIS BACK TO MAYOR GUILIANI, FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR GUILIANI, THIS ISN'T THE FIRST GAFFE WE'VE HEARD FROM HIM.

I'M STARTING TO WONDER HOW MUCH OF HIS PUBLIC STATEMENTS ARE ABOUT PERHAPS TRYING THIS CASE IN PUBLIC OPINION AND SPIN VERSUS ACTUAL GAFFES MADE BY WHAT WAS OTHERWISE AN INCREDIBLY SHARP PROSECUTOR.

SURE.

IT WAS WORTH NOTING HE WAS A U.S. ATTORNEY WITH AN IMPECCABLE RECORD, NOT IMPECCABLE BUT STRONG RECORD AROUND THE COUNTRY.

I THINK IT'S CHANGED AND IT IS PR AND LAWYERS DON'T UNDERSTAND HE COULD BE HURTING TRUMP'S CASE.

IT'S PR.

HE LIKES TO BE IN THE LIMELIGHT.

THIS IS THE KIND OF STRATEGY TRUMP EMPLOYES, WIN THE CASE IN PUBLIC.

PRESIDENT TRUMP WAS IN LONG ISLAND, ANY SURPRISE OF THE REACTION HE GOT?

TRUMP ACTUALLY HAS A LOT OF SUPPORT ON LONG ISLAND, ESPECIALLY ON SUFFOLK COUNTY.

THERE ARE PEOPLE THERE CONCERNED ABOUT MS-13, THE GANG WARFARE, EVEN IF IT'S EXAGGERATED, THE DEGREE OF VIOLENCE.

HE ACTUALLY DID VERY WELL IN THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE.

IT WILL BE INTERESTING TO SEE HOW FOLKS OUT THERE DO IN THE MID-TERMS, LIKE THE CONGRESSMAN.

JONATHAN, USUALLY WE HAVE YOU ON TO TALK ABOUT STATE POLITICS.

COINCIDENTALLY, I GUESS, ALL OUR NATIONAL POLITICS ARE COMING OUT OF NEW YORK.

I WANT TO THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US ON THE PROGRAM AGAIN.

WE'LL DEFINITELY BE TALKING MORE AS WE GET CLOSER TO THE MIDTERM ELECTIONS.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Rosalind P. Walter, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Janet Prindle Seidler, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

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