Former Trump attorney Cohen postponing testimony to Congress

A lawyer for Cohen said on Wednesday that "ongoing threats" against Cohen's family from the president and his attorney, Rudy Giuliani, "as well as Mr. Cohen's cooperation with ongoing investigations", had prompted him to decide not to appear as planned.

"This is a time where Mr. Cohen had to put his family and their safety first", Cohen lawyer Lanny Davis said in a statement.

Both Cummings and Rep. Steve Lynch, who is set to chair the oversight subcommittee on national security, are considering issuing subpoenas to Cohen to testify, according to a source with knowledge of the discussion.

And Cohen's decision to delay the testimony does not come as a complete surprise. In a 2007 deposition, Trump said, "We will be in Moscow at some point".

But in a new statement Wednesday, President Donald Trump's former attorney and long-time fixer says that he is delaying the appearance out of concern for his family.

"By advice of counsel, Mr. Cohen's appearance will be postponed to a later date". "We will not let the President's tactics prevent Congress from fulfilling our constitutionally mandated oversight responsibilities".

Giuliani appeared on news shows over the weekend including CNN where he called Cohen "a serial liar."

He explained to a reporter for The New Yorker that Mueller has not claimed that the Cohen allegation that President Trump counseled Cohen to lie was inaccurate; rather, the inaccurate statement in the BuzzFeed piece was its reference to the existence of texts and emails corroborating what BuzzFeed claims Trump told Cohen.

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This referred to Trump's comments that investigators should "look at" Cohen's father-in-law, Fima Shusterman, who pleaded guilty in the 1990s to tax fraud charges in connection with his NY taxi business, The Hill reported.

Before sentencing, Cohen ripped into his former boss in federal court, telling the judge he felt it was his duty to cover up the president's "dirty deeds".

Committee chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings, a Democrat, declined comment.

"This will not stop us from getting to the truth". The report said Cohen acknowledged Trump's instructions when he was interviewed by the Mueller team.

Cohen said he lied because Trump had asked him to do so and because Cohen wanted his testimony to be consistent with Trump's public campaign narrative that he had no business dealings in Russian Federation.

Davis also says Cohen has received threats. The report does not specify what Trump said to Cohen or when he said it.

The Senate committee did not immediately confirm the subpoena, but any interview with Cohen would nearly certainly take place in private, in keeping with how the panel generally conducts Russia-related hearings. In one interview, Giuliani said Trump had been in talks over the proposed Moscow Trump Tower project throughout the presidential campaign, possibly as late as October or November 2016.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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