White House On Defense: ‘I’ve Given The Best Information I Had At The Time’

on April 11, 2018 in Washington, DC.
Win McNamee/Getty Images North America

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Thursday that the Trump administration “give[s] the very best information that we have at the time” — seemingly regardless of whether that information turns out to be inaccurate.

At a press briefing Thursday, the Associated Press’ Zeke Miller asked why Trump had apparently been untruthful when he told reporters he didn’t know about the hush money Michael Cohen paid to porn actress Stormy Daniels to cover up her alleged affair with Trump.

Trump’s outside lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said in interviews Wednesday and Thursday that Trump reimbursed Cohen for the payment last year. Giuliani claimed Trump didn’t know where the money went when he paid it to Cohen.

As mayor Giuliani stated, and I’ll refer you back to his comments, this was information that the President didn’t know at the time but eventually learned,” Sanders said.

But how could Trump have been ignorant of the recipient of Cohen’s payment once reports broke in January that Cohen had paid off Daniels? Sanders left the question unanswered.

“How could he not have known?” ABC News’ Jonathan Karl asked. “He was paying him back.”

“I’m not going to get into those details,” Sanders said, before referring to Giuliani’s “lengthy” comments and the President’s tweets.

CNN’s Jim Acosta followed up with another unanswered question: “You said on March 7, ‘There was no knowledge of any payments from the President and he’s denied all of these allegations.’ Were you lying to us at the time, or were you in the dark?” he asked.

“The President has denied, and continues to deny, the underlying claim. And, again, I’ve given the best information I had at the time, and I would refer you back to the comments that you yourself just mentioned a few minutes ago about the timeline from Mayor Giuliani,” Sanders said.

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