Michael Cohen, former Trump lawyer, to testify publicly before Congress

Michael Cohen, former Trump lawyer, to testify publicly before Congress

President Donald Trump's former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, is scheduled to testify in front of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform on February 7th, ABC News reported.

Cohen was sentenced in December to a total of three years in prison for his role in making illegal hush-money payments to women to help Mr Trump's 2016 election campaign and lying to Congress about a proposed Trump Tower project in Russian Federation.

Federal prosecutors in the Southern District of NY have implicated, but not charged, the president in the deals reached in the closing weeks of the 2016 election, alleging in court filings that Cohen acted "in coordination with and at the direction of" Trump.

Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings said in a statement that the Democratic majority in the House showed that the public wants Congress "to serve as an independent check and balance on the Executive Branch by restoring accountability and transparency", and that Cohen's testimony would be a part of that mission.

Cummings had pushed past year for the committee to summon Cohen to testify about his interactions with the president.

In August, Cohen plead guilty to federal tax fraud, bank fraud, and violating federal campaign finance law, including payouts to Karen McDougal and Stormy Daniels, two women who claim to have had affairs with Trump.

Regardless of what Cohen says, though, his testimony will surely result in a presidential temper tantrum from his one-time mentor, who has called Cohen a "weak person," and recommended that people not hire him as their lawyer.

On November 30, Cohen struck a deal to plead guilty to one count of lying to Congress in exchange for cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller. Trump told reporters in McAllen, Texas, on Thursday that he was "not worried" about Cohen's testimony "at all".

"Mr. Cohen knows where a good numerous bodies were buried during the Trump campaign", Riopelle said. Trump has denied the trysts.

More news: Mueller believes Manafort fed information to Russian with intel ties

Trump has dismissed Cohen as a liar who "became a 'Rat"' after the Federal Bureau of Investigation searched his office.

Mr Trump acted because he "was very concerned about how this would affect the election", Cohen said.

"We don't want to do anything to interfere with the Mueller investigation - absolutely nothing", Cummings said.

"I look forward to assisting Michael to state publicly all he knows about Mr. Trump - and that includes any appropriate congressional committee interested in the search for truth and the difference between facts and lies", Davis said in a statement at the time.

Mueller's team in court filings wrote that Cohen provided "useful information concerning certain discrete Russia-related matters core to its investigation".

The panel's top Republican, Rep. Jim Jordan of OH, said Cohen's appearance shows that Cummings is using the "committee as a venue for political theatre rather than legitimate oversight", noting how Cohen has admitted knowingly lying to Congress and is a witness in ongoing investigations.

It was unclear if Cohen's agreement to testify before the Oversight Committee will preclude appearances, in public or private, before other House panels.

Mr Cohen once professed to be so loyal to Mr Trump that he would take a bullet for his boss.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, a California Democrat who had been seeking to bring Cohen before his committee, issued a statement on Thursday saying he hopes to schedule his own session with Cohen behind closed doors. Richard Burr, R-N.C., said in a statement.

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