Michael Cohen To Testify Publicly Before Congress About Work As Trump’s Lawyer

Michael Cohen, a former personal lawyer for President Donald Trump, is scheduled to testify before the House oversight committee next month regarding his work for the president.

Cohen’s hearing is set for Feb. 7, according to the committee’s public schedule. Committee chairman Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.) in a statement on Thursday thanked Cohen for agreeing to testify amid special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation.

“I want to make clear that we have no interest in inappropriately interfering with any ongoing criminal investigations, and to that end, we are in the process of consulting with Special Counsel Mueller’s office,” Cummings said. “The Committee will announce additional information in the coming weeks.”

Cohen pleaded guilty in November for lying to Congress during private testimony in 2017 about the timing and extent of discussions he had about a Russian real estate deal during Trump’s campaign. A federal judge in Manhattan sentenced him to three years in federal prison.

Cohen, who served as Trump’s attorney and fixer for years, came under scrutiny from federal prosecutors in New York over hush money payments he orchestrated during the 2016 presidential campaign to silence Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, two women who alleged having extramarital affairs with Trump.

He pleaded guilty in August to charges that included violating campaign finance laws and claimed he made the payments to the two women at Trump’s behest.

In a statement on Thursday, Cohen said he was prepared “to cooperate and provide the American people with answers.” 

“I look forward to having the privilege of being afforded a platform with which to give a full and credible account of the events which have transpired,” Cohen said, according to The New York Times.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Trump has denied that he directed Cohen to make the payments. Asked by The Washington Post’s Philip Rucker on Thursday whether he was concerned about Cohen’s testimony, Trump said: “I’m not worried about it at all.”

Mueller’s scrutiny of Cohen has focused on the attorney’s role in Trump’s business dealings, particularly negotiations over a Trump Tower project in Moscow during the 2016 campaign. Cohen lied to federal prosecutors about the timing of his discussions with Russian officials.

Cohen also lied about whether he and Trump, referred to as “Individual 1” in the November court documents, discussed planning a trip to Russia during the campaign.

“COHEN asked Individual 1 about the possibility of Individual 1 traveling to Russia in connection with the Moscow Project, and asked a senior campaign official about potential business travel to Russia,” the documents said.

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