Michael Cohen's decision to release a secretly recorded tape-in which himself and President Trump discuss hush payments to a Playboy model-has inhabitants of Trumpland anxious about a civil war between the two.
On the tape, Trump and Cohen talk about buying the rights to McDougal's story, which she had sold a month earlier to the National Enquirer for $150,000. In addition, Trump's attorneys have not claimed the recording is a privileged attorney-client conversation.
It is a potential problem for Mr Trump because undisclosed payments to bury embarrassing stories about a political candidate can be treated as a violation of U.S. campaign finance laws.
The payment was never made and Mr Giuliani said he didn't know why that was the case and hadn't discussed it with Mr Trump.
A former Playboy model who says she had a 10-month relationship with Mr Trump starting in 2006. Giuliani denies that Trump had an affair with McDougal.
Mr Cohen's attorney, Lanny Davis, took to Twitter to respond warning: "Just as Richard Nixon learned, tapes don't lie!"
The release of the tape has sparked a widespread debate about the sanctity of attorney-client privilege, and its use in "one-party" consent states.
"Inconceivable that the government would break into a lawyer's office (early in the morning) - nearly unheard of", Trump tweeted, in an apparent reference to an Federal Bureau of Investigation raid on Cohen in April.
According to Giuliani, in his transcript of the recording, Trump says on the tape: "Don't pay with cash".
Common Cause says the tape bolstered their argument that Trump knew about the payment and that it was potentially illegal. "The recording. between Trump and Cohen. confirms the man who now occupies the Oval Office had contemporaneous knowledge of a proposal to buy the rights to the story of Karen McDougal, a woman who has alleged she had an extramarital affair with Trump", Stris tweeted. White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said this week "the president maintains he's done nothing wrong".
Alan Dershowitz said on CNN that the release of the tape was the clearest indication that Cohen was going to "flip" and testify against the president. Cohen said at the time "In a private transaction in 2016, I used my own personal funds to facilitate a payment of $130,000 to Ms. Stephanie Clifford".
The report suggests that some of the recordings that do not include Trump may still pertain to Cohen's work for the president and his businesses.