After suggesting Trump pursued Moscow project long into campaign, Giuliani tries to clarify

Giuliani tries to clarify Trump Moscow project timeline

(CNN) - Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, tried to distance himself on Monday from a claim he made over the weekend that, as a candidate, Trump may have discussed a Moscow real estate project all the way through the 2016 election.

Doing damage control over his own media blitz, Giuliani told CNN that actually the president has no recollection of discussions that late.

"Could be up to as far as October, November. Our answers cover until the election. So any time during that period they could have talked about it,” Giuliani originally said on “Meet the Press.”

But Trump couldn't know the exact date the talks ended, Giuliani now claims, because there is no record of the negotiations.

He had said Trump acknowledged discussing the Moscow project with his former personal attorney Michael Cohen during the election.

"He acknowledged that they had conversations about it throughout 2015, 2016,” Giuliani said on “State of the Union.”

Giuliani even told The New York Times that Trump told him the discussions were “going on from the day I announced to the day I won.”

The new timeline of discussions reveals how Trump’s business dealings with Russia coincided with his foreign policy proclamations on the campaign trail, such as that NATO, a central target of Russian President Vladimir Putin, is “obsolete.”

Giuliani caused another stir Sunday, saying it was possible Cohen did discuss his 2017 congressional testimony with the president ahead of time.

"If he had any discussions with him, they'd be about the version of events that Michael Cohen gave then, which they all believe was true,” Giuliani said. “I believe it was true. I still believe it may be true."

Cohen’s testimony at that time insisted that a proposed Trump property in Moscow was terminated in January 2016.

In his later guilty plea to federal charges stemming from the Russia investigation, he acknowledged lying in that testimony.

"I made these statements to be consistent with Individual-1's political messaging and out of loyalty to Individual-1," Cohen said then, using the courtroom reference to Trump in the case.

Giuliani, answering a follow-up question after acknowledging Trump and Cohen may have discussed that testimony in advance, answered: “And so what if he talked to him about it?”

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