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What Michael Cohen will discuss about his seedy past with Trump

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President Donald Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen has waffled on whether he will testify for Congress before he reports to prison for the crimes he’s pleaded guilty to — but on Wednesday, the House Oversight Committee confirmed that he will be appearing publicly at a hearing on Feb. 27.

It was also announced Wednesday that the date on which he must report to prison has been pushed back two months — from March 6 to May 6. He has been sentenced to 3 years in prison.

As one of the people who had been most deeply involved in the darkest elements of Trump’s business — he frequently referred to himself as Trump’s “fixer”— his testimony has the potential to be a political spectacle and damaging to the president. Once a loyal aide, he now sees himself as a bold truth-teller speaking out against the president’s corruption. He has already pleaded guilty to committing campaign finance crimes at Trump’s direction, implicating the president himself in a crime, by arranging hush money payment ahead of the 2016 election for women who said they had affairs with Trump. He has also pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about working on the president’s behalf to negotiate a deal with the Russian government to build a Trump Tower Moscow during the campaign.

He’s been scheduled to testify before but ended up backing out of the plans, most notably because Trump sent a threatening tweet demanding investigations of Cohen’s father-in-law. Cohen and his lawyer Lanny Davis said he felt threatened by these public messages, which many argued could constitute the crime of witness tampering and intimidation.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Cohen will not discuss Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. Cohen has previously said that Trump has not been honest about the Russia issue, and Mueller said he has provided details about central parts of the investigation.

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But according to a memo released by Oversight Chair Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), Cohen will be expected to discuss a wide range of topics touching on the president. They include (as described by Cummings):

  • the President’s debts and payments relating to efforts to influence the 2016 election
  • the President’s compliance with financial disclosure requirements
  • the President’s compliance with campaign finance laws
  • the President’s compliance with tax laws;
  • the President’s potential and actual conflicts of interest
  • the President’s business practices
  • the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C
  • the accuracy of the President’s public statements
  • potentially fraudulent or inappropriate practices by the Trump Foundation
  • public efforts by the President and his attorney to intimidate Mr. Cohen or others not to testify

Cummings noted that Cohen is testifying voluntarily and therefore is not under a subpoena. He will also meet with the committee on Feb. 28 to discuss matters that can not be discussed publicly.

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Trump is facing massive criticism for his attacks on young women of color in Congress

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US President Donald Trump came under fire from Democrats and even some members of his own Republican Party on Monday after launching an extraordinary xenophobic attack on four progressive Democratic congresswomen.

"All they do is complain," Trump told reporters at a White House event featuring products "Made in America."

"These are people that hate our country," he said of the four lawmakers. "If you're not happy here, you can leave."

Trump also accused the four first-term congresswomen -- who are of Hispanic, Arab, Somali and African American origin -- of having "love" for US "enemies like Al-Qaeda."

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Trump’s campaign is spending massively at his own businesses — and even more on lawyers

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President Donald Trump's 2020 re-election campaign filed their latest campaign finance reports on Monday.

Anna Massoglia, a researcher at the money in politics watchdog group Open Secrets, dissected the numbers and made two startling discoveries.

In the three months covered, from April through June, Trump's campaign and affiliated joint fundraising committees spent $326,094.24 at Trump businesses, including six figures at both Mar-a-Lago and Trump Hotel DC.

Trump's campaign also spent over $1.3 million on legal bills. He spent approximately $7 million on legal bills in 2018, Massoglia noted.

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Trump is ‘one pointy white hat shy of a Klan rally’: GOP strategist Rick Wilson ripped Trump as a ‘flagrant racist’ on MSNBC

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Republican strategy ripped President Donald Trump for being a "flagrant racist" during a Monday night appearance on MSNBC.

Lawrence O'Donnell interviewed Wilson about Trump's latest nativist attacks on young women of color in Congress.

"Rick Wilson, is this a campaign strategy? Is this Donald Trump and his campaign advisers thinking, well, our only hope is going for the voters we already have and energizing them and getting them to come and squeak out that electoral formula once again?" O'Donnell asked.

"Absolutely, Lawrence. As everyone else stated on the show, it’s been obvious for a long time from the long arc of his dad to redling to the Central Park Five to birtherism to this stuff today, this guy, he's racist adjacent in of the best day of his life," Wilson is explained.

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