So much for what we thought we were going to get out of Michael Cohen’s public testimony on Wednesday. All along we’ve heard that Cohen would focus on Donald Trump’s domestic and financial crimes, and that he would steer clear of Trump-Russia. But now we have confirmation, from Cohen himself no less, that he will incriminate Donald Trump in the Russian election rigging scandal.
It’s customary in these situations for witnesses to submit a prepared statement beforehand, and for that statement to be publicly released. Michael Cohen’s twenty page prepared statement has just been released, and on page two we find this stunning quote: “[Trump] was a presidential candidate who knew that Roger Stone was talking with Julian Assange about a WikiLeaks drop of Democratic National Committee emails.”
That’s right, Michael Cohen is flat out accusing Donald Trump of having known that Roger Stone was criminally conspiring with a foreign enemy of the United States, in an attempt at altering the outcome of the election. This would make Trump guilty of criminal conspiracy to rig the election. Here’s what Cohen goes on to say in his statement:
“In July 2016, days before the Democratic convention, I was in Mr. Trump’s office when his secretary announced that Roger Stone was on the phone. Mr. Trump put Mr. Stone on the speakerphone. 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.'”
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report