Cohen on the hot seat as House Oversight Committee deliberates

By Assistant Editor-In-Chief Sebastian Moronta Blanco.

Yesterday morning, President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen returned to Capitol Hill to testify before the House Oversight Committee.
His testimony contained several allegations of wrongdoing on the part of the President, and asserted that Michael Cohen committed numerous crimes “at the direction of and coordination with” the President.

This hearing takes place months after Michael Cohen issued a guilty plea to the Southern District of New York in part for lying to Congress during his initial testimony months ago. Since that testimony, Michael Cohen has been sentenced to three years in federal prison for his crimes. He has returned to answer questions from the newly Democrat-led House Oversight Committee, led by Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-MD), pertaining to his involvement in the Trump campaign, the hush money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels, and President Trump’s business dealings.

During his testimony, Michael Cohen described his time working with President Trump, and spoke towards his character as Cohen understood it. “I am ashamed because I know what Mr. Trump is. He is a racist. He is a conman. He is a cheat.” He submitted documents along with his opening statement that he claims corroborate his account of the President.

Among these documents are a copy of a check Mr. Trump wrote from his personal bank account “after he became president – to reimburse me for the hush money payments I made to cover up his affair with an adult film star and prevent damage to his campaign.” This contradicts President Trump’s previous statements to the press where he denies any knowledge of the payments.

He also included a copy of an article with Trump’s handwriting on it. The article was about the auction of a portrait of Mr. Trump where Trump arranged for the portrait to be purchased ahead of time by a private bidder, and reimbursed the bidder using his non-profit charitable foundation’s money.

He included financial documents from between 2011-2013 submitted to Deutsche Bank where Cohen alleges Trump misrepresented his net worth to both appear more wealthy than he is to Forbes magazine, and less wealthy than he is to federal tax collectors.
After his opening testimony, House Democrats and Republicans took turns questioning Cohen, each party demonstrating plainly their positions and intentions with regard to the testimony.

Democrats hammered Cohen on any information about Trump and Russia, where Cohen denied having any direct knowledge of collusion but said “I have my suspicions” and described an unusual interaction between Trump and his son, Don jr.

Republicans spent nearly all their time attacking Cohen’s credibility, repeatedly mentioning how Cohen was convicted of lying to congress, and using his previous work as a lawyer to portray Cohen as a pathological liar.

The testimony started at 10:00 AM and continued long into the afternoon, as President Trump was abroad in Vietnam in preparation for a meeting with North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un.


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