President Donald Trump and Michael Cohen call each other liars over pardon request – USA TODAY
President Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, paid money to women to be quiet about alleged affairs with Trump during his 2016 campaign.
WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump and his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, took turns calling each other liars Friday during a Twitter spat over a pardon request for Cohen.
Trump began by accusing Cohen of lying during his congressional testimony last week, when Cohen said he never sought a pardon. The president claimed Cohen personally asked him for one and was rejected.
“He directly asked me for a pardon. I said NO. He lied again!” Trump tweeted. “He also badly wanted to work at the White House. He lied!”
Not so, Cohen replied just minutes later.
“Just another set of lies by @POTUS @realdonaldtrump,” he tweeted.
Cohen then made reference to another part of his congressional testimony: That Trump authorized hush money payments to women who claimed to have had affairs with him, seeking to keep them quiet before the 2016 election.
“Mr. President…let me remind you that today is #InternationalWomensDay,” Cohen tweeted. He said the president should use the day “to apologize for your own #lies and #DirtyDeeds to women like Karen McDougal and Stephanie Clifford.”
Clifford is the legal name of adult film star Stormy Daniels.
Cohen attorney Lanny Davis said his client did have a previous lawyer approach Trump’s people about a pardon, but that does not contradict his congressional testimony. Davis said Cohen had a willingness to explore a pardon when he had a joint defense agreement with the president’s legal team, but he later withdrew from that arrangement.
At that point, Davis said, Cohen “authorized me as a new lawyer to say publicly Mr. Cohen would never accept a pardon from President Trump even if offered.”
Trump tweeted his attack on Cohen while aboard Air Force One on a trip to inspect tornado damage in Alabama.
Before leaving, Trump also called Cohen a liar over the pardon issue, and mocked him over a lawsuit against the Trump Organization seeking back legal fees.
“It’s the most ridiculous suit I’ve ever seen,” Trump said. “Bad lawyer. I had a bad lawyer.”