President Trump’s team reportedly views the legal problems facing Michael Cohen as potentially more damaging to the president than the Russia probe headed by Robert Mueller.
“Trump’s advisers have concluded that a wide-ranging corruption investigation into his personal lawyer poses a greater and more imminent threat to the president than even the special counsel’s investigation, according to several people close to Mr. Trump,” reports the New York Times.
After pointing out the raids of Cohen’s residence, hotel room, and office, the piece says that “although [Trump’s] lawyers had projected confidence in their dealings with the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, they were caught flat-footed by the New York raids. The lawyers fear that Mr. Cohen will not be forthcoming with them about what was in his files, leaving them girding for the unknown.”
Politico notes that attorneys for both Cohen and Trump have since petitioned the court to block the release of at least some of the materials seized by federal agents, with the former arguing confidentiality under attorney-client privilege.
Despite the scrutiny over Cohen’s business dealings, the president has continued to express his support for his lawyer, whom he called a “good man.”
Trump also said of the probe, “It’s a disgraceful situation. It’s a total witch hunt.”