Michael Cohen to tell Congress Trump knew about hacked emails

When President Trump’s former attorney and fixer Michael Cohen appears before Congress Wednesday, he plans to offer explosive testimony. He is expected to say Mr. Trump knew his ally Roger Stone was talking with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange about publishing hacked Democratic National Committee emails.

Cohen is also expected to say of his former boss, “He is a racist. He is a conman. He is a cheat.”

Cohen may not be talking about the special counsel’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential campaign, but he will have much to say to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, according to his prepared remarks provided to CBS News by a congressional source.

The testimony will be public, not behind closed doors like his two other appearance before congressional panels this week.

Cohen will recall being in Mr. Trump’s office in July 2016, before the Democratic convention, when Stone called. “Mr. Trump put Mr. Stone on the speakerphone,” Cohen plans to say. “Mr. Stone told Mr. Trump that he had just gotten off the phone with Julian Assange and that Mr. Assange told Mr. Stone that, within a couple of days, there would be a massive dump of emails that would damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Mr. Trump responded by stating to the effect of ‘wouldn’t that be great.”‘

Cohen is also expected to say Mr. Trump not only knew about Trump Tower Moscow negotiations well into the 2016 presidential campaign, but directed them. “Mr. Trump knew of and directed the Trump Moscow negotiations throughout the campaign and lied about it,” Cohen is prepared to say. “He lied about it because he never expected to win the election. He also lied about it because he stood to make hundreds of millions of dollars on the Moscow real estate project. And so I lied about it, too — because Mr. Trump had made clear to me, through his personal statements to me that we both knew were false and through his lies to the country, that he wanted me to lie.”

Rep. Matt Gaetz appears to threaten Michael Cohen on Twitter

Cohen notes that the president has been accused of courting white supremacists, but he claims the reality is worse. “He once asked me if I could name a country run by a black person that wasn’t a ‘sh**hole.’ This was when Barack Obama was president of the United States,” Cohen plans to say. “While we were once driving through a struggling neighborhood in Chicago, he commented that only black people could live that way. And, he told me that black people would never vote for him because they were too stupid.”

The president’s former fixer is also providing Congress with documents from his time as a Trump employee — among them, a copy of a $35,000 check from Mr. Trump’s personal bank account, after he became president, which Cohen will say was one of 11 installments reimbursing Cohen for the hush-money payments Cohen made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels, who claimed to have had an affair with Mr. Trump.

Cohen will also provide financial statements from Mr. Trump to Deutsche Bank from 2011-2013, and copies of letters Choen wrote at Mr. Trump’s behest that “threatened his high school, colleges, and the College Board not to release his grades or SAT scores.”

The former Trump fixer appeared before the Senate Intelligence Committee Tuesday in a closed hearing.

Cohen starts a 3-year prison sentence in early May for violating campaign finance law.

Rebecca Kaplan contributed to this report.

Categories: Government & Politics, US & World News

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