March 2 (UPI) — President Donald Trump blasted his former attorney Michael Cohen on Friday, saying he lied to House investigators in dramatic testimony this week.
On Wednesday, Cohen called the president a “racist” a “con man” and a “cheat” before the House oversight committee. He detailed Trump’s dealings with Russia, his attitudes toward black persons and the “intoxicating” feeling he had just being around Trump.
Trump lightly acknowledged the testimony from Vietnam, where he met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, but gave a much fuller rejoinder Friday.
“Michael Cohen’s book manuscript shows that he committed perjury on a scale not seen before,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “He must have forgotten about his book when he testified. What does Hillary Clinton’s lawyer, Lanny Davis, say about this one. Is he being paid by Crooked Hillary. Use her lawyer?”
Trump called on Congress to demand a transcript of Cohen’s unpublished book.
“Your heads will spin when you see the lies, misrepresentations and contradictions against his Thursday testimony,” another tweet said. “Like a different person! He is totally discredited!”
The president went on.
“Oh I see! Now that the 2 year Russian Collusion case has fallen apart, there was no Collusion except bye Crooked Hillary and the Democrats, they say, ‘gee, I have an idea, let’s look at Trump’s finances and every deal he has ever done. Let’s follow discredited Michael Cohen and the fraudulent and dishonest statements he made on Wednesday.
“No way, it’s time to stop this corrupt and illegally brought Witch Hunt. Time to start looking at the other side where real crimes were committed. Republicans have been abused long enough. Must end now!”
Cohen also told lawmakers Wednesday it might not be a pretty transition if Trump loses re-election in 2020.
“Given my experience working for Mr. Trump, I fear that if he loses the election in 2020 that there will never be a peaceful transition of power,” he said. “And this is why I agreed to appear before you today.”
On Thursday, Cohen concluded three days of congressional testimony, two of which were closed to the public. He will return to the House intelligence committee March 6 for more questioning.
Russian-born business associate Felix Sater will have a public hearing March 14, when he will likely answer questions about the shelved project to build a Trump Tower in Moscow.
Intelligence committee chairman Rep. Adam Schiff said the panel has more questions.
With Sater, the intelligence committee “is going to try to do as much as we can in the open,” Schiff said.
Schiff said a transcript of Cohen’s closed-door testimony could be released after a Justice Department review. He said no questions went unanswered Thursday, adding that Cohen was “fully cooperative.”
“This has obviously been an excruciating time for him,” Schiff said. “We are very grateful that he was as forthcoming as he was.”
Cohen pleaded guilty in New York in August to tax evasion, making false bank statements and making illegal campaign contributions for paying hush money to two women who allegedly had affairs with Trump.
Cohen also pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about the Moscow skyscraper negotiations.
A veteran IRS employee was indicted Thursday on charges that he leaked banking records to the attorney for adult film star Stormy Daniels in May. John C. Fry, 54, faces charges of unauthorized disclosure, misuse of a computer and illegal use of a Social Security number. He was released from federal court in San Francisco on $50,000 bond.
Fry combed through IRS databases for dirt on Cohen and eventually found some suspicious transactions, officials said. He faces up to 15 years in prison and a $750,000 fine if convicted on all counts.