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Trump Attorney Goes Right After Michael Cohen In ‘Hush Money’ Trial

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


One of former President Donald Trump’s attorneys went right after his former fixer-lawyer, Michael Cohen, as cross-examination began in the Manhattan hush money trial on Tuesday.

Cohen, who was Trump’s lawyer for ten years, was sentenced to prison on multiple charges, including one related to a $130,000 hush money payment he made to Stormy Daniels. Daniels alleges she had an affair with Trump in 2006. Prosecutors contend that Trump arranged for Cohen to make the payment to silence Daniels ahead of the 2016 election and that Trump later reimbursed Cohen, adding a bonus.

The former president faces 34 counts of falsifying business records to conceal the alleged payment. He has pleaded not guilty to all counts and denies having had a sexual encounter with Daniels.

Katie Phang of NBC News was in the courtroom on Tuesday for Cohen’s cross-examination and shared the following account on social media (Note: This is not an official transcript and it has been edited for clarity and punctuation):

BLANCHE: Mr. Cohen, my name is Todd Blanche, and you and I have never met. You went on TikTok and called me a “crying little shit.”

COHEN: That sounds like something I would say.

PROSECUTION: Objection.

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JUDGE: Sustained.

[…]

BLANCHE: You referred to Trump as a “dictator douchebag”?

COHEN: Sounds like something I said.

BLANCHE: You said he should go back to “where he belongs, in a fucking cage like a fucking animal.” You recall saying that?

COHEN: I recall saying that.

Phang also posted this exchange:

BLANCHE: You also talked on [your podcast] Mea Culpa your desire to see Trump get convicted in this case?

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COHEN: Sounds like something I’d say.

BLANCHE: Have you regularly commented on your podcasts that you want President Trump convicted in this case?

COHEN: Yes, probably.

BLANCHE: Do you have any doubt?

COHEN: I would like to see accountability, [but] it’s not for me, it’s for the jury and this case.

Meanwhile, earlier this week Trump’s attorney-spokeswoman once again pointed out the hypocrisy surrounding her boss’s prosecution in the case.

Alina Habba was discussing testimony by Trump’s former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, where he admitted to secretly recording his then-boss during a conversation regarding an alleged hush money payment. Such discussions between attorneys and their clients are supposed to be privileged and private, but Cohen’s testimony before the court wasn’t challenged, at least not yet.

“Last time I checked, there’s something called attorney-client privilege. Obviously, you know, that doesn’t stand if you’re going against Donald Trump because none of the rules stand if you’re going against Donald Trump in a political campaign where he is winning and they have no other way to win but to take him down with illegal and politically motivated lawfare,” Habba told Fox News host Sean Hannity.

“You said it best, Sean. Hillary Clinton did something far worse, and the [Federal Election Commission] looked at it, they examined it, and what did they do? They gave her a slap on the wrist, she paid I think eight grand for hiding the dirty dossier, the Russian hoax against Donald Trump, and nobody cared about anything,” Habba continued.

“She wasn’t dragged into court. Neither was Bill Clinton in the sock drawer case, and the list goes on and on and on. But if you are Donald Trump, you’re going to be gagged unconstitutionally so that you can’t even discuss testimony of people that are calling you a liar, and you can’t defend yourself. Can I tell you, Sean, I have never seen anything worse than what I saw today. I’m not going to get into the testimony of somebody under oath on a witness stand, but I think if you read the news, it speaks for itself,” she added.

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