The Latest: Trump tries to distance himself from Cohen


WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen (all times local):

4:30 a.m.

President Donald Trump is lashing out at his former lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen, before Cohen testifies at a public hearing.

Trump is distancing himself from Cohen in a tweet from Hanoi, Vietnam, where he has traveled for a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Trump insists Cohen was just “one of many lawyers who represented me (unfortunately).” He also says Cohen “had other clients also” and “did bad things unrelated to Trump.”

Cohen plans to tell a House committee on Wednesday that Trump knew ahead of time that WikiLeaks had emails damaging to 2016 Democratic rival Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and that Trump is a “racist,” a “conman” and a “cheat.” That’s according to prepared testimony obtained by The Associated Press.

Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about a project in Russia. Trump accuses Cohen of now lying to reduce his prison sentence.

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2:15 a.m.

President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer is planning to tell a House committee that Trump knew ahead of time that WikiLeaks had emails damaging to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

In prepared testimony obtained by The Associated Press, Michael Cohen says that Trump implicitly told him to lie about a Moscow real estate project.

And the former Trump fixer brands his old boss a “racist,” a “conman” and a “cheat.”

On the matter of racism, Cohen says the president made racist comments “disparaging African-Americans, saying at one point that black people would never vote for him because they were too stupid.”

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Ahead of his appearance, Cohen said Tuesday that the American people can decide “exactly who is telling the truth” when he testifies Wednesday before the House Oversight and Reform committee.





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