Last Friday, The New York Times reported that Donald Trump had knowledge about the non-disclosure agreement signed by adult film star, Stormy Daniels, months before he flat-out denied knowing anything about the deal.
Trump also told the press a few in 2017 that he had no knowledge of the six-figure payment his personal lawyer Michael Cohen made to Daniels in 2016 to ensure that news of her alleged affair with the then-presidential candidate remained a secret – at least until he won the election.
Lawyer Says Trump Paid Back Michael Cohen
It is unclear, as of this point, when Trump found out about the deal and how much he knew about it when he first openly denied the accusations in April, 2017 while talking to reported on an Air Force One flight.
But in the past 48 hours, Times has stirred up the steaming pot of controversy once again and dragged President’s alleged affair with adult film star, Stormy Daniels, into the limelight, this time with the claim that Trump knew about the six-digit payment his lawyer Michael Cohen had made to the actress during the 2016 presidential campaign, in return for her signatures on a secret non-disclosure agreement.
Last Wednesday, one of Trump’s lawyers, Rudolph W. Giuliani, made a shocking revelation in an interview with Fox News that Donald Trump had repaid Michael Cohen for the payment he had made to actress Stormy Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, in 2016. But why would Trump reimburse Cohen for a deal that he didn’t even know about?
Payment was Made Days Before the Election
According to three sources close to the president, when Daniels was approached by various news publications in 2016 with proposals to sell them the story of her romantic affair with the then-presidential candidate, Trump was informed about the situation by his campaign manager, and even had knowledge that his lawyer Cohen had succeeded in buying the actress’ silence for a large sum of money.
However, the sources weren’t able to confirm if the decision to bribe Daniels was made solely by Michael Cohen or did the President play a role in influencing it.
The sources say that Daniels signed the NDA agreement only days before Trump became president and the money was wired into her bank account soon after, as promised by Cohen. Ever since taking the office, Trump has repeatedly denied claims of having an extramarital relationship with the adult film star but once Daniels herself blew the lid off the non-disclosure agreement, the President said that he only made the deal to protect his family and avoid public embarrassment.
An Expensive Non-Disclosure Agreement
It has been previously revealed that Miss. Daniels received a total amount of $130,000 from Michael Cohen in return for her silence on her affair with Trump, which could have destroyed his chances of becoming president, had the press caught a whiff of the scandalous story.
However, in the recent interview, Giuliani said that Trump reimbursed a total of $460,000 to Cohen, raising speculations about what the rest of the $330,000 was for. One of the insiders claimed that Daniels received a total of $420,000 spread out over 12 months.
In Wednesday’s interview, Giuliani asserted that Cohen had been reimbursed $130,000 by Trump for the ‘hush’ deal stuck with Daniels, and an additional $330,000 was paid, for unexplained reason. The claim was I direct conflict with Trump’s continuous defense over the past several months that he knew nothing about the NDA agreement or the hush money.
Reimbursement Made From Trump’s Personal Trust
The insiders also revealed that Trump Organization’s chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, found out about the reimbursement deal last year after noticing monthly outgoing payments of $35,000 being made from President’s personal trust fund into Cohen’s account.
Employees working at the organization knew that Cohen was involved in various legal activities for Trump, but no one, including Allen Weisselberg, had any clue about the non-disclosure agreement with the adult film star – at least not at the time when the retainer agreement was struck and the money exchanged hands.
But when exactly did Weisselberg find out about the secret deal between Cohen and Daniels, and why did he fail to speak up after the news was brought to his knowledge? His intentional silence on the subject could drag Trump Organization into federal investigation into Cohen’s legal and financial activities.