Trump’s personal lawyer will be in federal court on Monday, and Trump’s attorneys are arguing they should be allowed to review the materials the F.B.I. seized from Cohen in their recent raid before federal prosecutors can have a look. A separate team of prosecutors seriously called the “taint team” will determine what is protected by attorney-client privilege, but Cohen wants to have a look first.
All of this makes it seem that Cohen and Trump have some serious skeletons in that vast gold-encrusted walk-in closet to hide. However, even though by many accounts, it seems the end of Trump’s presidency is upon us, in actuality, Michael Cohen’s importance may be a tad overblown.
There are bigger fish to fry here.
Cohen certainly knows a great deal about certain events pertinent to the Russia investigation: the Moscow Trump Tower project, Trump’s notorious associate, Felix Sater, and a back-channel plan to relieve sanctions on Russia over Ukraine, not to mention the whole Stormy Daniel’s story. Who seriously believes that Cohen paid off Stormy with his own money and that his client had no idea?
Cohen’s personal business dealings have been under investigation for months.
“Crimes being investigated involve acts of concealment,” said prosecutors from the southern district of New York.
As juicy as these stories are, we might be getting ahead of ourselves to suggest that Cohen will know something that will lead to Trump’s downfall.
According to a report from Bloomberg, there may be two men who know much more than Cohen about Trump’s many business dealings. Those men are Jason Greenblatt and Allen Weisselberg.
— Bloomberg View (@BV) April 16, 2018
“Greenblatt specialized in real-estate law at a major New York firm before signing on with the Trump Organization in 1997. He soon became Trump’s true in-house counsel and the company’s executive vice president. Everything that mattered in the Trump Organization, every sizable deal or sensitive transaction, required Greenblatt’s signature, not Cohen’s. Allen Weisselberg, the Trump Organization’s chief financial officer, has played a similar role when it comes to the company’s finances,” says Timothy L. O’Brien.
Although Weisselberg isn’t well known, he could know much more than Cohen.
“[Weisselberg] plays an integral part in the Trump Organization’s growth and continued financial success,” wrote Ivanka Trump in an emailed statement. “He is deeply passionate, fiercely loyal and has stood alongside my father and our family for over three decades.”
— Tatyana Shumsky (@MissShumsky) November 7, 2016
Special Counsel Robert Mueller and/ or New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman may decide they want to interview these two men, and then it will make Cohen look like another Trump “coffee boy” like Trump’s former foreign policy advisor, George Papadopoulos in comparison.
When it comes to Cohen, he’s another key player, but it wasn’t he who had to sign off on every deal or sensitive transaction that Trump made. That was Jason Greenblatt.
“[Cohen] was a central player in the problematic overseas deals that will become central to these investigations. But he definitely wasn’t running the company,” said Adam Davidson of the New Yorker.
Sure, we all want this investigation into Trump to wrap up. It feels like America and really, the whole world is in serious peril, and we need to know the truth. But if Cohen or his documents don’t reveal something incriminating against Trump, then these investigations could be going on a lot longer, until other even more important key players weigh in. It’s could all be a game of hurry up and wait until Mueller and/or Schneiderman gets to the bottom of this endless scandal.
See more about the Cohen legal battle from MSNBC’s Morning Joe below:
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