They described a man whose once-powerful legal career long ago morphed into a role of attracting clients for law firms and using his contacts to help emerging businesses. Much of that work was conducted in loose social settings, with Giuliani drawing attention for his outrageous statements — frequently directed at his favorite target, Hillary Clinton — while delighting some listeners and offending others.

On Tuesday, however, MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough went so far as to state on live television that Trump didn’t initially hire Giuliani for a Cabinet post because he was “losing it,” “falling asleep five minutes into meetings” and “drinking too much” — charges that Giuliani himself rejected in his own combative style in an interview with POLITICO.

“None of that is true,” Giuliani said of Scarborough’s remarks in an interview Tuesday afternoon. “I’m not sleeping now. I’m in Dallas. I’m wide awake. I’ve handled numerous cases including some sensitive cyber matters. I’m a lot more aware and intelligent than Joe has ever been and a lot more accomplished. Joe hasn’t been knighted by the Queen of England. He hasn’t run a U.S. attorney’s office, much less a city that he turned around or went through 9/11.”