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In the HuffPost interview, Giuliani was seemingly trying to defend the president against any suggestion that Michael Cohen improperly influenced the administration after the revelation that Cohen, Trump's longtime personal attorney, was paid large sums of money by AT&T and several other corporate clients.

"Our company has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons.and our reputation has been damaged", the memo said.

The chief lobbyist for AT&T is leaving the company after overseeing a $50,000-per-month contract for President Donald Trump's attorney Michael Cohen to serve as a political consultant.

The Essential Consultants bank account receiving the corporate payments is allegedly the same one Cohen used to send $130,000 to Daniels - who has alleged that she had a sexual encounter with Trump in 2006 - to complete a non-disclosure agreement shortly before the 2016 presidential election.

Trump has denied the affair, and Cohen claims the payment was made to silence Daniels's false claims.

"Why doesn't the Fake News Media state that the Trump Administration's Anti-Trust Division has been, and is, opposed to the AT&T purchase of Time Warner in a now ongoing Trial". Within Time Warner this week, officials were surprised to learn about the contract with Essentials Consulting.

Cohen's lawyer, Stephen Ryan, declined to comment.

Drugmaker Novartis on Wednesday said it had a US$1.2 million contract with Cohen's firm, but soon realized the agreement was a mistake.

AT&T and the pharmaceutical company Novartis, another Cohen client, said this week that they provided information about their dealings with Trump's lawyer to special counsel Robert Mueller III a year ago.

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Cohen's payments from companies while acting as a personal lawyer to the president may raise legal issues besides whether the consulting work constituted lobbying.

The chief of the Antitrust Division, Makan Delrahim, has denied that there was any White House interference in the decision to sue to block the merger, and the White House issued a statement past year saying that "no White House official was authorized to speak with the Department of Justice on this matter".

At the time that AT&T engaged Cohen, it wasn't aware of "the current controversy surrounding Cohen", AT&T said. Quinn, who began working at AT&T in the 1980s, is well connected in the political circles of both parties.

AT&T's vast lobbying team, which includes more than 100 people, and public policy staff will now report to the company's general counsel, David McAtee.

The company also said in the fact sheet that it had been contacted late previous year about Cohen by the office of Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Russian meddling in the 2016 election and other matters, and had "cooperated fully" with the inquiries. "Quinn stepping down is not going to cripple AT&T", said Feld.

A Novartis spokesman said the company anticipated Wyden's letter and plans to fully cooperate.

"I think that this further proves that the President is not going to be influenced by special interests", Sanders said.

On the day AT&T announced its bid to buy Time Warner, the parent company of CNN, then-candidate Trump said he opposed the deal. U.S. District Judge Richard Leon is expected to rule next month.

The Associated Press contributed to this record.


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