President Trump continues to be dismissive of his former “fixer” Michael Cohen. However, Cohen’s attorney Lanny Davis, says that is only because Trump sees his client as “the greatest threat” to his presidency right now.
“Donald Trump sees Michael Cohen, and I would say justifiably, as the greatest threat to his presidency and what could be criminal and impeachable actions as president,” Davis, said speaking to MSNBC’s Kasie Hunt recently.
In his interview with Hunt, Davis went on to slam Trump for his Fox News interview the previous day, in which the president attacked Cohen and his father-in-law. Trump claimed Cohen, his longtime personal lawyer, is lying “to get a sentence reduced” and vaguely referenced possible wrongdoing by his father-in-law as “the money in the family.”
Cohen is currently preparing to publicly testify before Congress in February.
How Big of a Threat Is Cohen to Trump?
But just how much of a threat does Trump actually face from his former lawyer and confidant?
According to Fox News’ Howard Kurtz, not as much as Davis would have you believe. Kurtz says Davis’ statements are just a lot of defense attorney bluster, and that left-wing journalists who are already painting Cohen as the next John Dean, are “probably jacking up expectations too high.”
Citing inside sources who know Cohen very well, Kurtz said in a recent column, “Cohen will offer compelling testimony, but those who expect him to be able to fire a silver bullet that would bring down the president are going to be sorely disappointed. Cohen may have important new information that he has disclosed to Robert Mueller in 70 hours of interviews with prosecutors, but if so, he won’t be able to reveal it.”
When Cohen appears before Congress in February, it will make for another great reality TV moment, but he will be under severe restrictions. The major limitation says Kurtz, “is that he can’t discuss anything still under investigation by the special counsel.” That means Cohen, who is vying for a reduced sentence, can’t answer questions about Russian collusion or the proposed real estate project in Moscow, or the salacious 2016 Trump Tower meeting between Paul Manafort, Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and a Russian lawyer (who was recently indicted on money-laundering charges).
Since he cannot openly discuss anything he may know about some of the most damaging allegations swirling about Trump, Cohen’s testimony will be more about trying to save his own skin, than it is likely to be designed to hurt the president. Kurtz says that Davis told him, “I expect Michael’s testimony will be personal, not partisan, and compelling. He will describe what he did for Mr. Trump for 10 years that he now looks back on, as stated in court, with shame and regret. And he will explain what caused him, on July 2, 2018, to turn and put his family and country first; recognizing the dangers to the country in Mr. Trump’s misconduct and reckless behavior.”
Davis went on to tell Kurtz that his client believes that, “compared to others who committed far worse offenses, [his sentence] is disproportionately excessive and unjust.”
Cohen is currently facing a three year prison term.