Donald Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani may have thought that he represented the president and his wife when he spoke about their relationship in Israel on Wednesday. But he was proven wrong when, only a day later, Melania Trump's spokeswoman responded to Giuliani's comments on the alleged Stormy Daniels affair, saying, "I don't believe Mrs. Trump has ever discussed her thoughts on anything with Mr. Giuliani."
It was a decidedly different tone than the one Giuliani claimed in Tel Aviv where he attended a conference. While speaking of the adult film actress Stormy Daniels' claim that she and Donald Trump once had sex in 2006, Giuliani said, "[Melania Trump] believes her husband, and she doesn't think it's true." The former Republican mayor of New York joined the White House in April. (The White House has vehemently denied the affair on Donald Trump's behalf.)
The attorney appeared unrepentant about his comments. When CNN asked him for a response to the statement from Stephanie Grisham, the first lady's spokeswoman, Giuliani said, "I don't regret saying it because I believe it. Yes, I believe that [Melania Trump] knows him well enough to know this one is — what's the word, fakakta?" Fakakta is Yiddish for outlandish.
Giuliani told CNN that he never personally spoke with the first lady about Daniels' claim. "I've never interviewed Melania, there is no reason to," Giuliani said. "I took it [Melania Trump's statement] as she didn't want to get involved and get called as a witness or anything like that."
In Israel, Giuliani had also criticized sex workers in his remarks about Daniels. He said, "I respect women — beautiful women and women with value — but a woman who sells her body for sexual exploitation, I don't respect. Tell me what damage she suffered. Someone who sells his or her body for money has no good name."
Giuliani also passed disparaging remarks about Daniels' appearance in that same event: "Excuse me, when you look at Stormy Daniels — uh, I know Donald Trump — look at his three wives. Beautiful women. Classy women. Women of great substance. Stormy Daniels?"
As the backlash against his remarks grew louder, Giuliani doubled down on his commentary. "If you're involved in a sort of slimy business says, [that] says something about you — says something about how far you'll go to make money," he told CNN early Thursday. "A person who would say no isn't going to do something very demeaning like that for money. Our real point about her is that she's not just generally uncredible, she's uncredible from the point of view of wanting to get money. She's a con artist."
In his interview with CNN on Thursday evening, Giuliani also went on a rant about respect. "Yes, I respect porn stars," he said. "Don't you respect porn stars? Or do you think that porn stars desecrate women? Do you think that porn stars don't respect women and therefore sell their bodies?"
I respect all human beings. I even have to respect, you know, criminals. But I'm sorry, I don't respect a porn star the way I respect a career woman or a woman of substance or a woman who has great respect for herself as a woman and as a person and isn't going to sell her body for sexual exploitation.
The first lady's spokesperson's response isn't the only rebuke Giuliani has received in the aftermath of his comments; Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti had some choice words for the lawyer, too. "Mr. Giuliani is a misogynist," Avenatti tweeted on Wednesday. "His most recent comments regarding my client, who passed a lie detector test and who the American people believe, are disgusting and a disgrace."
Yet in spite of the backlash to his controversial comments, it's hard to say that such criticism will deter Giuliani from holding back on his thoughts in the future.