On Thursday, Michael Cohen’s legal adviser Lanny Davis issued a statement indicating that his client, the convicted former personal lawyer for President Trump, has been subpoenaed by the Senate Intelligence Committee just one day after Cohen announced that he would have to postpone his upcoming testimony before the House Oversight Committee due to “threats” from Trump and his new lawyers.
It’s unclear whether the move is related to Cohen’s announcement, as Committee Chair Richard Burr’s spokesman declined on behalf of Republicans to comment on the subpoena.
The major cable news networks indicated that Cohen’s testimony before the Senate would be scheduled for some time in mid-February, ostensibly a week later than he was originally scheduled to testify before the House, leaving little time to reconsider whether or not to appear in that hearing on time prior to giving testimony to the Senate.
But the real question after this announcement is whether or not President Trump will use this opportunity — a publicly-scheduled hearing featuring his former lawyer, whose offices were raided last year, resulting in the recovery of virtual treasure troves of recordings of Trump and Cohen together discussing actual crimes being committed in real time — to do the same as he did when the House hearing was publicly announced.
At that time, Trump tweeted thinly-veiled threats about Michael Cohen’s family, in particular, his father-in-law Fima Shusterman, who Trump has indicated an interest in investigating on multiple occasions:
Kevin Corke, @FoxNews “Don’t forget, Michael Cohen has already been convicted of perjury and fraud, and as recently as this week, the Wall Street Journal has suggested that he may have stolen tens of thousands of dollars….” Lying to reduce his jail time! Watch father-in-law!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 18, 2019
Legal experts weighing in on Trump’s statements called his tweets blatant witness intimidation and suggested that the President could be guilty of obstruction (again). So will Trump do the same now that Cohen is scheduled to testify before the Senate? Or will Trump rest easy that the hearing will be mostly a sham, with loyalist Republicans refusing to publicly release transcripts of the testimony?
We’ll be following along, and you should as well.
Featured image via screen capture