According to a bombshell new report by BuzzFeed News, President Trump personally ordered his former attorney, Michael Cohen, to lie to Congress about Trump’s efforts to pursue a real estate deal in Moscow.
As background, throughout the 2016 campaign, Donald Trump denied any efforts to pursue deals in Russia. In 2017, Michael Cohen testified to Congress that efforts to seek a Trump Tower in Moscow had ended in January 2016. But in fact, the Trump Organization had been actively pursuing a Trump Tower Moscow deal through June 2016. In November 2018, Cohen pleaded guilty to making false statements to Congress.
The new report from Buzzfeed adds that Trump personally instructed Cohen to lie to Congress in order to hide Trump’s involvement. Furthermore, the evidence is not limited to Cohen’s testimony. To the contrary, Cohen simply confirmed what was already known:
The special counsel’s office learned about Trump’s directive for Cohen to lie to Congress through interviews with multiple witnesses from the Trump Organization and internal company emails, text messages, and a cache of other documents. Cohen then acknowledged those instructions during his interviews with that office.
Instructing a witness to lie to Congress is an impeachable offense (as demonstrated, e.g., in the second article of impeachment against Richard Nixon) and may involve multiple federal crimes (e.g., conspiracy, subornation of perjury, and witness tampering).
The House Judiciary Committee should launch an immediate impeachment inquiry. Our system of constitutional democracy is in danger and further delay is irresponsible.