President Donald Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani’s “truth isn’t truth” statement was “not meant as a pontification on moral theology,” the former New York City mayor said Monday.
Instead, Giuliani said he was “referring to the situation where two people make precisely contradictory statements, the classic ‘he said, she said’ puzzle.”
My statement was not meant as a pontification on moral theology but one referring to the situation where two people make precisely contradictory statements, the classic “he said,she said” puzzle. Sometimes further inquiry can reveal the truth other times it doesn’t.— Rudy Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) August 20, 2018
Giuliani’s comments came one day after his appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press, during which he told an incredulous Chuck Todd that “truth isn’t truth” while explaining why he did not want to rush Trump into testifying to special counsel Robert Mueller:
“When you tell me … [Trump] should testify because he’s going to tell the truth and he shouldn’t worry, well, that’s so silly because it’s somebody’s version of the truth. Not the truth,” Giuliani said.
“Truth is truth,” Todd replied.”
“No, no, it isn’t truth,” Giuliani said. “Truth isn’t truth.”
“Truth isn’t truth?” Todd said. “Mr. Mayor, do you realize, what … I think this is going to become a bad meme.”
“No, no, no … don’t do this to me,” said Giuliani, putting his hand to his head.
“Don’t do ‘truth isn’t truth’ to me,” Todd fired back.
“Donald Trump says I didn’t talk about [Michael] Flynn with [James] Comey. Comey says you did talk about it. So tell me what the truth is,” Giuliani said.
Giuliani’s comments were immediately pounced upon by those critical of Trump and others in his orbit. Former FBI Director James Comey, whose firing by Trump led to the appointment of Robert Mueller as special counsel in the Russia investigation, said Sunday that “truth exists and truth matters.”
“Truth has always been the touchstone of our country’s justice system and political life,” said Comey. “People who lie are held accountable. If we are untethered to truth, our justice system cannot function and a society based on the rule of law dissolves.”
Truth exists and truth matters. Truth has always been the touchstone of our country’s justice system and political life. People who lie are held accountable. If we are untethered to truth, our justice system cannot function and a society based on the rule of law dissolves.— James Comey (@Comey) August 19, 2018
Trump has said he is willing to talk to Mueller, but his current legal team, headed by Giuliani, has yet to arrange such a meeting, insisting that certain topics remain off-limits.