BuzzFeed is reporting that President Trump directed his former lawyer Michael Cohen to lie about his Trump Tower project in Moscow.
Cohen pleaded guilty in November to lying about the deal in testimony and in a two-page statement to the Senate and House intelligence committees. Special counsel Robert Mueller noted that Cohen’s false claim that the project ended in January 2016 was an attempt to “minimize links between the Moscow Project and Individual 1” — widely understood to be Trump — “in hopes of limiting the ongoing Russia investigations.”
Now the two sources have told BuzzFeed News that Cohen also told the special counsel that after the election, the president personally instructed him to lie — by claiming that negotiations ended months earlier than they actually did — in order to obscure Trump’s involvement. (BuzzFeed)
If true, it could be "the most serious threat" to Trump's presidency, according to Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI), who reacted to the news on CNN Friday. He, along with Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA), concluded that BuzzFeed has proven the president is guilty of obstruction of justice. He added that we now "don't even have to wonder if it's an impeachable offense."
If the President directed Cohen to lie to Congress, that is obstruction of justice. Period. Full stop.— David Cicilline (@davidcicilline) January 18, 2019
Based on the Buzzfeed report and numerous other articles showing @realDonaldTrump committed Obstruction of Justice and other possible felonies, it is time for the House Judiciary Committee to start holding hearings to establish a record of whether @POTUS committed high crimes.— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) January 18, 2019
Given the seriousness of the allegation, the congressmen demanded he and his colleagues are given a chance to investigate.
Cicilline on if he's calling for an immediate congressional investigation into report Trump directed Cohen to lie: "I think we have to wait for the reports to be confirmed before we can call on that... You have one opportunity to move forward on something so serious." pic.twitter.com/q2bfklSCEA— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 18, 2019
However, when asked by CNN's John Berman if he has evidence to prove Trump told Cohen to lie, Cicilline said "we've all seen the conduct of the president."
Berman noted that wasn't an answer and asked again, did he actually see the evidence?
"I have not seen the evidence referenced in that article," Cicilline admitted.
While the report has yet to be confirmed or corroborated, one of the authors of the BuzzFeed report, Anthony Cormier, stood by his reporting on CNN Friday as "100 percent" truth.
“I am rock solid. My sourcing on this goes beyond the two that are on the record. This 100% happened,” @a_cormier_ says about his BuzzFeed report that President Trump directed Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about proposed Moscow project. https://t.co/sF3XuqPfkq pic.twitter.com/BMCzhs904a— New Day (@NewDay) January 18, 2019