Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani emerged as one of Donald Trump’s closest advisers during the campaign. Since Trump took office, there have been rumors that Giuliani was being considered for a position in Trump’s administration. He was one of Trump’s top picks for the position of Secretary of State but later withdrew his name from consideration.
.@RudyGiuliani, one of the finest people I know and a former GREAT Mayor of N.Y.C., just took himself out of consideration for “State”.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 10, 2016
It’s never been explicitly revealed why the former mayor removed himself from consideration, but it is possible that he felt he would not be confirmed. While he is not Secretary of State, Giuliani still has a role in Trump’s administration where, despite his lack of expertise in the field, he advises Trump on matters related to cyber security.
However, recently Giuliani, like other members of Trump’s team, has found himself embroiled in a scandal involving potential conflicts of interest. Unlike other members of Trump’s staff, this scandal does not involve Russia, but rather Iran and Turkey.
Giuliani was recently retained as part of the defense team for Reza Zarrab, a Turkish-Iranian, gold smuggler who has been accused of violating U.S. sanctions against Iran. Prosecutors have alleged that several of the banks involved in the scandal were clients of Giuliani’s and that Giuliani’s law firm was registered as an agent of the Turkish government.
On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Richard Berman said that he would need more information in order to determine whether Giuliana would be allowed to represent Zarrab due to these potential conflicts of interest. Reuters reports that he has ordered Giuliani to turn over all relevant information.
‘Berman ordered Brafman to meet with Giuliani and Mukasey and submit information on what kind of work they were hired to do for Zarrab, what kind of work their firms had done for the banks and what the firms were doing to avoid conflicts.
‘The judge ordered Brafman to say whether Zarrab’s legal fees were being paid by someone else, and if so, who.
‘Berman also ordered Brafman to submit a description of the relationship between Giuliani’s law firm and Turkey, including any involvement by Giuliani himself.’
While this case does not appear to affect Giuliani’s role as Trump’s cyber-security czar, it might be why he withdrew his name from consideration for the position of Secretary of State, since he would be subject to a Senate confirmation hearing.
Regardless of what position he holds within Trump’s administration, the fact that Giuliani’s law firm is registered with the Turkish government is disturbing.
Featured image via Getty Images.