Published: Wed, July 25, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

President Trump says it’s ‘sad’ Cohen recorded him

President Trump says it’s ‘sad’ Cohen recorded him

Michael Cohen's lawyer Lanny Davis dropped a bombshell Wednesday night, premiering a secretly recorded tape of Cohen and his former client Donald Trump discussing payment to squash the affair allegation of a Playboy model during the 2016 campaign. On the audio tape, first released by CNN, Trump can be heard discussing the payment with Cohen.

'I need to open up a company for the transfer of all of that info regarding our friend David, ' Cohen said in the recording - thought to be a reference to American Media head David Pecker. Cohen has a lot more information to release, and he apparently doesn't care whether it puts Trump in harm's way. The payment was made in August 2016.

The tape involves Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model who says she had a months-long fling with Trump after they met in 2006, shortly after Trump's wife Melania gave birth to their son, Barron.

There's plenty of speculation about whether the release of the tape signals Michael Cohen's intention to "turn" on Trump, but there's been no indication from Cohen (yet) that he plans to do so. Giuliani went as far as to say Cohen was reimbursed up to $470,000 (later revising it down to $420,000). Was he taping the conversation to protect himself in case Trump later denied knowledge of Cohen's actions? Mr Cohen is under criminal investigation by federal prosecutors. The story was never published by AMI. However, the new audio recording makes that claim suspicious. McDougal's lawyer, Peter Stris, said Tuesday evening that the recording proves just the opposite.

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"Well, besides the fact that it's a titillating fact and that we like to know about those kinds of things, that in reality if it's cash or if they set up a dummy organization - as was allegedly done in the Stormy Daniels case - it looks like they are trying to cover up something, hide something", Klieman said.

Cohen, who has fallen out with Trump, is under federal investigation in NY for his business dealings and reportedly whether hush payments violated campaign finance laws.

Davis told ABC that Cohen was not seeking a preemptive pardon from Trump and that Cohen "has turned a corner in his life, and he's now dedicated to telling the truth to everyone".

A combination photo shows U.S. President Donald Trump's onetime personal attorney, Michael Cohen and U.S. President Donald Trump from outside federal court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., April 16, 2018 and in the White House in Washington, U.S., July 18, 2018.

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