Chuck Ross, DCNF
Lanny Davis, a legal adviser to Michael Cohen, said Thursday that he hopes Cohen’s upcoming testimony before Congress will lead to a reduced prison sentence for the former Trump fixer.
“It’s certainly my aspiration, my hope,” Davis told MSNBC’s Ari Melber when asked whether there have been discussions that Cohen’s Feb. 7 testimony could be used to obtain a reduction in his three-year prison sentence.
Cohen was sentenced to jail on Dec. 12 after pleading guilty to tax evasion, bank fraud, illegal campaign contributions and lying to Congress. Cohen said in a statement on Thursday that he had agreed to appear before the House Oversight and Reform Committee in order to “give a full and credible account of the events which have transpired.”
President Donald Trump responded on Thursday saying that he is “not worried at all” about what Cohen might say during his Capitol Hill appearance.
Cohen, 52, has said Trump instructed him to pay hush money to Stormy Daniels, the porn star who claims she had an affair with Trump in 2006.
WATCH: Lanny Davis discusses Michael Cohen’s upcoming congressional testimony
Cohen pleaded guilty in federal court in New York to the tax, bank fraud and campaign finance charges. He pleaded guilty in the special counsel’s investigation on Nov. 29 to lying to Congress about the extent of his negotiations to build a Trump Tower in Moscow.
It’s unclear whether Cohen will be at liberty to discuss Russia-related topics during his testimony. Cohen has been accused, most notably in the Steele dossier, of taking part in a massive conspiracy to pay off Russian hackers on behalf of the Trump campaign.
Cohen and Davis recently disputed those allegations after McClatchy reported that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has evidence that Cohen visited Prague in Summer 2016, as the dossier alleges.
Davis said that topics that might interview with the special counsel’s investigation will be off limits. Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings, a Democrat, said Thursday that the special counsel’s office has approved Cohen’s testimony.
“He’s committed to the truth,” Davis said on MSNBC. “It is about helping him and his family as he goes off to prison for now a three year term that I hope will be reduced.”
Earlier on Melber’s show, former Watergate prosecutor Nick Ackerman noted that Cohen has up to one year to appeal for a reduced prison sentence.
“He knew he was going to jail for a good period of time because of his tax and bank violations,” Ackerman said. “That was a given. I think his only get out of jail card here is to testify for Mueller, it testify before Congress.”
“Because he still has within a year of his sentence the opportunity to go before the sentencing judge and ask for a reduction based on this cooperation,” he continued.
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