Trump rejects Cohen claim that he knew about 2016 Trump Tower meeting

Sunday, 29 Jul, 2018

Trump railed against special counsel Robert Mueller's examination of past tweets, and finally said, "I did NOT know of the meeting with my son, Don Jr".

"(Cohen) even retained Bill and Crooked Hillary's (Clinton) lawyer", Trump also wrote, referring to Davis. He went on to question Cohen's choice of retaining lawyer Lanny Davis, suggesting because of the decision that Bill and Hillary Clinton might have been behind Cohen's claim.

Andrew McCarthy, a former assistant USA attorney for the Southern District of NY who is now a contributing editor for National Review and a Fox News contributor, told Fox News host Laura Ingraham that "the big problem" Cohen will face concerns his "prior testimony" and "prior interviews", in which he "evidently did not cough this" information up. If this story wasn't about Jr. seeking dirt, it would've been about Trump campaign officials meeting with a Russian lawyer who is lobbying against US-imposed sanctions on Russia.

Cohen alleges that he was present, along with several others, when Trump was informed of the Russians' offer by Trump Jr.

To be clear, these sources said Cohen does not have evidence, such as audio recordings, to corroborate his claim, but he is willing to attest to his account.

Robert Mintz, a former federal prosecutor now in private practice, said Cohen "seems to be taking a page out of President Trump's playbook by having his lawyers aggressively respond in the media to attacks on his credibility and reputation".

Giuliani declined to name the witnesses.

"I expected something like this from Cohen", Giuliani told CNN's Chris Cuomo on Thursday.

"I don't want the president to consider a pardon, but you don't get one by lying", he said. His attorney Lanny Davis declined to comment on the report, as did spokeswomen for Mueller and the US attorney in Manhattan.

And now Cohen is saying that Donald Trump Jr. did let his father know about that meeting in advance.

In this photo taken on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016, Kremlin-linked lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya speaks to a journalist in Moscow, Russia.

The New York Times first broke news about the meeting in July 2017. But he has said since that no "meaningful information" was offered and the meeting focused mostly on the issue of adoptions of Russian children.

The official story later changed.

Giuliani has maintained the recording reveals Trump did nothing wrong.

CNN cited anonymous sources saying Cohen was willing to share that information with special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating possible collusion between Trump's campaign and Russian Federation.

Trump Jr. testified past year to the Senate Judiciary Committee that his father had no knowledge of the meeting with the Russians. And he has said in the past that the president didn't know about this nothing.

I suspect that a long line of presidents would dispute Trump's "tougher on Russia" claim, particularly Ronald Reagan.

Phone records then show that Trump Jr. called Agalarov back at 4:31 p.m.

Trump's primary residence at the time - Trump Tower - had a blocked number, according to separate testimony to the committee from former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski.

"He wasn't aware of it", Don Jr. said of his father during an appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee late past year.

Cohen is under criminal investigation in the Southern District of NY because of his business dealings and efforts during the 2016 campaign to suppress negative stories about Trump.

"I think you're going to find it very informative and very, very interesting", Trump said. "Mueller has always been said to be interested in the circumstances of that statement, which denied that the meeting had dealt with campaign issues at all". His father's promised June 13 speech never occurred, and no explanation was ever offered. "How stupid and unfair to our Country", he tweeted.