Trump says former lawyer Cohen 'lied a lot' in Congress testimony


From the Russian Federation investigation to hush payments to a mistress, Donald Trump's embattled ex-lawyer Michael Cohen's testimony to Congress touched upon a wide range of controversies.

So media coverage has been completely consumed by the smorgasbord of Trump scandals rather than Trump's summit with Kim Jong Un.

Democratic House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said in a tweet that on Thursday he planned to dig into the Trump Moscow project, the revelations about WikiLeaks and any White House role in Cohen's prior false statements.

He took aim at Cohen's testimony that Trump was a racist who said black people would not vote for him because they're "too stupid".

Cohen said he had no evidence Trump had colluded with Russian Federation to gain advantage in the election.

Mr Cohen, Mr Trump's former lawyer, told the House Oversight and Reform committee thatMr Trump asked him to lie to First Lady Melania Trump about hush money paid to porn actress Stormy Daniels, who alleged she had an affair with Mr Trump.

Cohen will tell Congress again that he kept working on a Trump Tower project in Moscow well into the 2016 presidential campaign and did not stop in January of that year as he had originally told lawmakers.

The appearance marked the latest step in Cohen's evolution from legal fixer for the president - he once boasted he'd "take a bullet" for Trump - to a foe who has implicated him in federal campaign finance violations.

He claimed Trump "frequently told me that his son Don jnr had the worst judgment of anyone in the world". They could have made it two days later or next week'.

Michael Cohen, the former personal attorney of U.S. President Donald Trump, steps off an elevator at the U.S. Capitol as he arrives to testify before a closed House Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 28, 2019.

Sceptical and, at times, hostile Republicans noted repeatedly that Cohen has already pleaded guilty to lying to Congress.

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Cohen is set to begin a three-year prison sentence on Monday, May 6 - though it could be extended if the Committee determines that Cohen is not entirely truthful during Wednesday's hearing. I was impressed with the fact, ' Trump said.

He suggested prosecutors in NY are investigating conversations that Trump or his advisers had with Cohen after Cohen's hotel-room office was raided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. When Cohen was asked if Trump knew about the reimbursement method, he testified: "He knew about everything".

Cohen held his own against fiery attacks during the hearing, castigating Republicans for avoiding serious questions about Trump.

And on at least one occasion, Trump provided an inflated valuation of his assets to an insurer, Cohen said.

"Over the past year or so, I have done some real soul-searching", Cohen told the committee yesterday in his opening remarks.

"Certainly it's the first time a convicted perjurer has been brought back to be a star witness in a hearing", Republican Representative Jim Jordan told Cohen, deriding him as a "cheat" and a "fraudster" who is about to go to prison. "I am ashamed because I know what Mr. Trump is". (One for tabloid chief David Pecker would be a doozy.) The hearings are diagrammed to get rid of Trump just the same, but the preferred means will be the 2020 ballot.

The letter also said that Cohen lied about not having reportable contacts with the governments of foreign countries.

Cohen's allegation would contradict the president's assertions that he was in the dark on this issue.

Like Trump, who is from Queens, Cohen grew up on the edge of New York City, on Long Island, thirsting to conquer Manhattan, the epicentre of wealth, power and glamour.

Cohen grew visibly emotional at the end of the hearing as Cummings thanked him for coming.