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Michael Cohen referred to DOJ for alleged perjury during Congressional testimony

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Prior to President Donald Trump’s disgraced former attorney Michael Cohen testifying to the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday about the president’s alleged crimes, Trump speculated that Cohen was just trying “to reduce his prison time” by telling tall tales to Congress.

While it’s still unclear whether that thesis is right, what’s notable is that Cohen’s no-holds-barred testimony may have in reality just landed him in even deeper water with the criminal justice system (not to mention mobsters and criminals, but that’s another story altogether).

Following his testimony, several Republican members of the committee submitted a letter to Attorney General William Barr accusing Cohen of committing perjury by knowingly making false statements during his testimony Wednesday to the Oversight Committee.

“While testifying under oath, Mr. Cohen made what appear to be numerous willfully and intentionally false statements of material fact contradicted by the record established by the Justice Department in United States v. Cohen,” committee members Reps. Jim Jordan and Mark Meadows wrote.

“Mr. Cohen’s testimony before the Committee at times was in direct contradiction to assertions contained in pleadings authored by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (SDNY.) There are other instances in which Mr. Cohen’s statements to the Committee were immediately contradicted by witnesses with firsthand knowledge of the subject matter.”

They listed numerous examples as evidence:

Lie one: Though some of the charges Cohen reportedly pleaded guilty to were described by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York as “bank fraud,” Cohen explicitly said Wednesday, “I never defrauded any bank.”

Lie two: Though Cohen repeatedly claimed Wednesday that he never once sought employment within Trump’s White House, a mountain of evidence shows otherwise.

Lie three: During his testimony, Cohen suggested that someone else set up a fake “WomenForCohen” Twitter account on his behalf. But according to the evidence, that someone else set up the account at his request. There’s a subtle difference.

Lie four: Prior to his testimony Wednesday, Cohen filled out a “True in Testimony” disclosure form. In the form he stated “he did not have any reportable contracts with foreign government entities,” Jordan and Meadows wrote.

“We believe this to be false. Mr. Cohen testified during the hearing that he had entered into contractual agreements during 2017 with at least two foreign entities owned in part by foreign government,” they added.

Lie five: Cohen’s verbal testimony Wednesday did not match with the written statement he submitted prior to the hearing.

HERE’S WHAT YOU’RE MISSING …

Lie six: In his testimony, Cohen attributed his crimes to “blind loyalty” to the president. That too was a lie. SDNY prosecutors and District Judge William H. Pauley III both previously concluded that his crimes were motivated by personal greed and ambition.

“In sum, Mr. Cohen’s testimony before the Committee on Oversight and Reform on February 27, 2019, was a spectacular and brazen attempt to knowing (sic) and willfully testify falsely and fictitiously to numerous material facts,” Jordan and Meadows wrote in conclusion of their letter.

“His testimony included intentionally false statements designed to make himself look better on a national stage. Mr. Cohen’s prior conviction for lying to Congress merits a heightened suspicion that he has yet again testified falsely before Congress.”

Jordan and Meadows have both been heralded by conservatives on social media as veritable heroes for taking such a “bold” stand against Cohen’s continued lies both during and after the hearing.

Look:

HERE’S WHAT YOU’RE MISSING …

Vivek Saxena

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