Hope Hicks admitted she didn’t ask Trump if hush payments happened — before public denial during the 2016 election
Donald Trump's personal attorney, Michael Cohen & adult film star, Stormy Daniels appeared in federal court in Lower Manhattan in April 2018. (a katz / Shutterstock.com)

On Thursday, CNN's Manu Raju reported that one of the topics of discussion in ex-White House Communications Director Hope Hicks' closed-door testimony to the House Judiciary Committee was the payoffs to women facilitated by President Donald Trump's former attorney Michael Cohen, who is currently serving a three-year federal prison sentence for tax evasion and campaign finance violations.

During the course of that questioning, Hicks made a startling admission.

"She was pressed extensively behind closed doors about the hush money payments that occurred in the 2016 campaign that were aimed at apparently covering up those alleged extramarital affairs involving then-candidate Trump, presumably to help his election chances at the time," said Raju. "She denied having any knowledge about the involvement. She said that to both Stormy Daniels, the former — the adult film actress, as well as the former playboy playmate Karen MacDougal, she said she was not involved with that and had no knowledge when that actually occurred."

"She issued a statement right before the elections to the Wall Street Journal, saying that these allegations were untrue," said Raju. "And she was asked about why she made that statement, and she said that she was directed to make a public statement denying that a relationship existed between Mr. Trump and a woman named Karen MacDougal. And then she was asked by Sheila Jackson Lee, a Democrat on the committee, did you ask the president whether that was true? Hicks responded, 'Not to my recollection.'"

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