Trump's ex-lawyer Michael Cohen to testify in public before Congress

Ex-Trump lawyer Michael Cohen will testify publicly before Congress ahead of entering prison

U.S. President Donald Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen will testify in Congress on February 7, according to a schedule released Thursday by the House of Representatives oversight and government reform committee, now led by Democrats.

"I thank Michael Cohen for agreeing to testify before the Oversight Committee voluntarily", said Cummings in a statement. "We have no interest in inappropriately interfering with any ongoing criminal investigations, and to that end, we are in the process of consulting with Special Counsel Mueller's office", Cummings said in a statement.

"I look forward to having the privilege of being afforded a platform with which to give a full and credible account of the events which have transpired", he added.

Cohen, who served as Trump's attorney and fixer for years, came under scrutiny from federal prosecutors in NY over hush money payments he orchestrated during the 2016 presidential campaign to silence Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, two women who alleged having extramarital affairs with Trump.

Cohen's cooperation with Mueller prompted a falling out with his former client, with Trump attacking Cohen on Twitter, including accusing him of lying to try to lessen his jail sentence.

The women have claimed they had affairs with Trump after the real estate mogul married his third wife, Melania.

It's unclear whether Cohen's testimony contains evidence that could lead to the impeachment of the United States president, but given the fact that Trump's casually-tweeted comments (such as criticisms of the Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell) have been correlated with major turbulence in the stock markets, the last thing the economy needs at the moment is another wild card. He was also charged with lying to Congress about plans to build a Trump tower in Moscow in 2016.

Cohen has a track record of erratic and unethical behavior, caught on tape at one point threatening a Daily Beast reporter with complete financial and social ruin if he published a story with the words "Trump" and "rape" regarding an accusation made by Trump's first wife.

When asked about the issue of possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, Giuliani told Fox News that "Cohen doesn't know a damn thing about collusion" and added there was "no evidence of high crimes or misdemeanors" in anything that Mueller has made public so far.

Cohen also lied about whether he and Trump, referred to as "Individual 1" in the November court documents, discussed planning a trip to Russian Federation during the campaign. It's unclear what Cohen will be allowed to talk about in the hearing and what Robert Mueller, or prosecutors in NY, will want him to keep to himself.

Soon after his appearance in front of House Oversight was announced, House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) released a statement welcoming the testimony but also stressing the need for Cohen "to answer questions pertaining to the Russian Federation investigation". House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler of NY is demanding acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker testify this month, and he's threatening a subpoena if Whitaker won't voluntarily appear.

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