Dem chairman closes Cohen hearing with emotional speech

House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairman Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsMaryland postpones primary over coronavirus fears Maryland governor: 'Simply not enough supplies' on hand to tackle coronavirus Meadows joins White House facing reelection challenges MORE (D-Md.) closed Wednesday's hearing with former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen with an impassioned plea for lawmakers to “get back to normal” and to consider the democracy they are leaving future generations. 

“I don’t know why this is happening for you, but it is my hope that a small part of it is for our country to be better,” Cummings told Cohen at the conclusion of roughly seven hours of testimony.

“The president called you a rat,” Cummings added. “We’re better than that. We really are. I’m hoping that all of us can get back to his democracy that we want and that we should be passing on to our children so that they can do better than what we did.”

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Cohen become visibly emotional as Cummings acknowledged the difficulty of the circumstances for the president's longtime attorney.

“Hopefully this portion of your destiny will lead to a better Michel Cohen, a better Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSenators demand more details from Trump on intel watchdog firing Overnight Health Care: Trump steps up attack on WHO | Fauci says deaths could be lower than first projected | House panel warns federal stockpile of medical supplies depleted | Mnuchin, Schumer in talks over relief deal Trump says he'll look into small business loan program restricting casinos MORE, a better United States of America, and a better world,” Cummings said as Cohen reached for a drink of water.

The chairman grew more animated as he spoke, shouting into the microphone as he called on lawmakers to reflect on how they're protecting democracy.

He took a swipe at Republicans, who earlier in the day suggested that holding a hearing with Cohen was an indication that Democrats were out to get the president.

Cummings noted that the committee previously held a hearing on prescription drug prices.

“We can do more than one thing,” Cummings said. “And we have got to get back to normal.”

Cummings then gaveled the hearing to a close after roughly seven hours of testimony from Cohen.

The president's longtime attorney, who is facing a three-year prison sentence, will meet privately on Thursday with the House Intelligence Committee.