Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s self-described “fixer,” indicated that he might cooperate with prosecutors, potentially spelling more trouble for a White House that’s already been rocked by a criminal investigation into election meddling by Russia.
“My wife, my daughter, and my son have my first loyalty and always will,” Cohen said during an interview last weekend with ABC News chief anchor George Stephanopoulos. “I put family and country first.”
It’s quite a get for Stephanopoulos and ABC, as it marks Cohen’s first sit-down interview since the FBI raided his office and homes in April. Cohen once said he would take a bullet for President Trump, but that position appears to have softened with the threat of jail time looming. The attorney for Trump said his family was his “first priority,” not the current Oval Office occupant.
Asked if that means he will provide testimony or evidence to special counsel Robert Mueller and federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York, Cohen said, “Once I understand what charges might be filed against me, if any at all, I will defer to my new counsel, Guy Petrillo, for guidance.”
Cohen has yet to be charged, but investigators are trying to determine if he violated federal election laws by orchestrating payments to porn star Stormy Daniels in exchange for her silence on an alleged affair with Trump. They are also looking into whether or not Cohen participated in illegal business dealings such as bank and wire fraud.
Trump initially said the raid on Cohen’s office was a “disgrace,” but later tried to distance himself by telling “Fox & Friends” that the attorney only handled a “tiny, tiny fraction” of his legal work. Highlights from the 45-minute interview were broadcast on “Good Morning America.” So far, all is quiet on Trump’s Twitter feed, the president’s usual forum for airing threats and grievances.