Senate Dem: Cohen has incentive to tell truth

Senate Dem: Cohen has incentive to tell truth
© Greg Nash

Sen. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseDems introduce bill requiring disclosure of guest logs from White House, Trump properties Sanders announces first staff hires in Iowa, New Hampshire McConnell works to freeze support for Dem campaign finance effort MORE (D-R.I.) said Wednesday that President TrumpDonald John TrumpCummings says Ivanka Trump not preserving all official communications Property is a fundamental right that is now being threatened 25 states could see severe flooding in coming weeks, scientists say MORE's longtime personal attorney, Michael Cohen, has an incentive to be truthful with lawmakers during testimony on Capitol Hill, pushing back against GOP criticisms that Cohen is untrustworthy.

ADVERTISEMENT

Whitehouse noted on Twitter that Cohen's cooperation agreement with federal prosecutors could be imperiled if he's found to have perjured himself during congressional testimony.

"Looking at prison, all #Cohen’s incentives are to be truthful," Whitehouse said.

The senator responded directly to a tweet from Trump, who earlier repeated his claim that Cohen is lying to secure a lighter prison sentence.

Rep. Eric SwalwellEric Michael SwalwellTrump reignites criticism of McCain months after senator's death Swalwell jokes about 'bad decisions' after bleached-hair yearbook photo resurfaces Dem lawmakers unveil Journalist Protection Act amid Trump attacks on media MORE (D-Calif.) noted in a tweet of his own that Cohen has agreed again to testify under oath, whereas Trump has not.

House Majority Leader Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton Hoyer4 in 5 Americans say they support net neutrality: poll Hillicon Valley: Social media faces scrutiny after New Zealand attacks | YouTube removed 'tens of thousands' of shooting videos | DHS chief warns of state-backed cyber threats | House Dems plan April vote on net neutrality House to take up gender pay gap, Violence Against Women Act MORE (D-Md.) told reporters on Tuesday that it's fair to have questions about Cohen's credibility."

"However, having said that, I have far less questions about his credibility, given the fact that the Mueller investigation is ongoing and that, obviously, if he lies to Congress, he'll face substantially more time in jail than he is apparently facing now," Hoyer said. "So, I think that makes it much more likely that he's going to be careful to tell the truth."

Republicans have attempted to portray Cohen as unreliable ahead of his testimony with the House Oversight and Reform Committee, noting that he has already pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about the timing of negotiations for a Trump Tower in Moscow.

Cohen will allege on Wednesday that Trump is a "conman," a "racist" and a "cheat," and that he had direct knowledge of a scheme to pay off adult-film star Stormy Daniels during the 2016 campaign. Daniels alleges she had an affair with Trump.

Cohen, who worked for years as Trump's personal attorney and "fixer," was sentenced late last year to serve three years in prison after he pleaded guilty to campaign finance law violations related to the hush money payment, bank fraud, tax fraud and lying to Congress.

The president sought to distance himself from Cohen in an early morning tweet that was sent while he is in Vietnam for negotiations with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Updated at 10:21 a.m.