Donald Trump's lawyer says 'truth isn't truth'

Rudy Giuliani.
Rudy Giuliani. Photo credit: Getty

Donald Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani has defended his boss' reluctance to testify in the ongoing Russia probe, because "truth isn't truth".

The former New York Mayor dropped the curious phrase during an interview on NBC's Meet the Press show.

Mr Giuliani told host Chuck Todd Mr Trump wouldn't be rushed into having to testify, in order to avoid getting "trapped into perjury".

"And when you tell me that, 'You know, he should testify because he's going to tell the truth and he shouldn't worry,' well, that's so silly because it's somebody's version of the truth. Not the truth."

"Truth is truth," Mr Todd responded.

"No it isn't," said Mr Giuliani. "Truth isn't truth."

The shocked host repeated Mr Giuliani, turning it into a question: "Truth isn't truth?"

Mr Todd then told Mr Giuliani he was going to become a "bad meme".

The phrase was almost instantly compared to Mr Trump's counseller Kellyanne Conway's infamous "alternative facts" comments in January 2017. She was referring to Mr Trump's claim his inauguration ceremony was bigger than that for Barack Obama, while photos showed the opposite was true.

The Guardian called it a "new Orwellian outburst", referring to author George Orwell's classic book Nineteen Eighty-Four, in which the all-powerful state confuses the populace with phrases like "war is peace" and "freedom is slavery".

Mr Trump's campaign has been under constant investigation over its alleged links to Russia.