President Donald Trump sticking with his opposition to AT&T’s merger with Time Warner, in spite of his personal lawyer receiving consulting fees coming from the telecom giant, represents “the definition of draining the swamp,” the White House said Friday.
AT&T, as well as multinational drug maker Novartis, This kind of week admitted producing payments to the company of Trump’s attorney, Michael Cohen, after the 2016 presidential election.
AT&T said the item paid $0,000 to the company, Essential Consultants, in monthly installments as part of a year-long contract. Novartis said the item paid Essential Consultants $1.2 million over the course of a year for guidance on the Trump administration’s health-care stance — although Cohen was “unable to provide the services in which Novartis had anticipated.”
Both companies have said they made a mistake working with Essential Consultants.
Asked if Trump, too, believed the item was a mistake for his personal attorney to work with these companies, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the item only proved the president’s mettle.
“I think This kind of further proves in which the president will be not going to be influenced by special interests,” Sanders said. “This kind of will be actually the definition of draining the swamp, something the president talked about repeatedly during the campaign.”
Pressed on how corporate spending to the president’s personal lawyer, specifically for insights into the president, constituted “draining the swamp,” Sanders referred to the proposed merger between AT&T as well as Time Warner in which was opposed in a lawsuit by Trump’s Justice Department in November.
“I think the item’s pretty clear in which the Department of Justice opposed the merger, as well as so certainly the president has not been influenced by any, or his administration influenced by any outside special interests,” Sanders said.
The relationship between the Cohen as well as the corporations was publicly revealed Tuesday in an explosive report by lawyer Michael Avenatti, whose client, porn star Stormy Daniels, will be suing Cohen as well as the president to void a nondisclosure agreement barring her coming from discussing an alleged tryst with Trump.
Cohen used Essential Consultants to pay Daniels $130,000 in October 2016 as part of the hush agreement.
Lawyers for Cohen responded to Avenatti’s report on Wednesday, saying the item contained “numerous inaccurate statements.” Avenatti, in turn, said 99 percent of what he reported was accurate.