Cummings calls for Oversight hearing with Cohen

Cummings calls for Oversight hearing with Cohen
© Anna Moneymaker

Rep. Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsHouse chairman: Trump lawyers may have given false info about Cohen payments Overnight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Dems blast rulemaking on family planning program | Facebook may remove anti-vaccine content | Medicare proposes coverage for new cancer treatment Rule change sharpens Dem investigations into Trump MORE (D-Md.) is calling for a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing with Michael Cohen, who implicated the president in his guilty plea to campaign finance violations on Tuesday. 

Cummings, the ranking member of the panel, on Wednesday called on committee Chairman Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdyTrey Gowdy joins Fox News as a contributor Congress must take the next steps on federal criminal justice reforms Lynch testimony marks final interview of GOP-led probe MORE (R-S.C.) to schedule a hearing "as soon as possible ... to obtain sworn testimony directly from Mr. Cohen." 

"Yesterday, President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to multiple federal crimes and directly implicated President TrumpDonald John TrumpRosenstein expected to leave DOJ next month: reports Allies wary of Shanahan's assurances with looming presence of Trump States file lawsuit seeking to block Trump's national emergency declaration MORE in directing these crimes," Cummings wrote.


Cohen, who was Trump's longtime lawyer and fixer, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to tax and bank fraud charges as well as campaign finance violations. He said in court that Trump had directed him to arrange payments to two women during his 2016 presidential campaign in exchange for their silence about alleged affairs with Trump more than a decade ago. 

"Now that Mr. Cohen has pleaded guilty to these crimes, he is willing to testify before Congress," Cummings said. 

The Maryland Democrat then quoted Cohen's lawyer, Lanny Davis, who on Wednesday morning said Cohen is willing to "tell the truth ... if asked by any authority." 

"These are extremely serious crimes that implicate the fundamental underpinnings of our democracy, and they warrant robust and credible oversight by Congress as an independent Constitutional check on the Executive Branch," Cummings wrote.

The Oversight and Government Reform Committee is the House's main investigative panel.  

House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiDonald Trump proved himself by winning fight for border security Trump should beware the 'clawback' Congress The national emergency will haunt Republicans come election season MORE (D-Calif.) on Wednesday also highlighted Congress's role following Cohen's claims, saying Democrats should focus on oversight of the president and allow special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE to finish his work, The Associated Press reported.

The leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee said on Tuesday that they want Cohen to testify regarding a topic that is unrelated to his New York charges.

Committee Chairman Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrSchiff: Evidence of collusion between Trump campaign, Russia 'pretty compelling' The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Lawmakers scramble as shutdown deadline nears Drama hits Senate Intel panel’s Russia inquiry MORE (R-N.C.) and Vice Chairman Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerSchiff: Evidence of collusion between Trump campaign, Russia 'pretty compelling' The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Lawmakers scramble as shutdown deadline nears Steel lobby's PR blitz can't paper over damaging effects of tariffs MORE (D-Va.) said in a joint statement that they want Cohen to appear before their committee to discuss recent media reports indicating he knew about the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting before it took place.