Highlights from Michael Cohen's explosive testimony on Donald Trump

Rudy Giuliani’s meltdown proves Cohen’s testimony is driving Trump’s team ‘to a point of near hysteria’ report

President Donald Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen will talk behind closed doors on Thursday to a congressional panel investigating Russia's interference in the 2016 US election, capping an explosive week of testimony in which he levelled new allegations of wrongdoing at his former boss.

Two top Republicans on the committee, Jim Jordan and Mark Meadows, asked the Justice Department to investigate Cohen for perjury, saying he lied during his appearance on Wednesday about his efforts to land a White House job and his work for two foreign companies, among other topics. "They saw the circus".

He said Cohen made "very demeaning comments about the president that Miss Patton doesn't agree with".

"He said that not only did the President want to stop that story because of the campaign, but just as importantly he wanted to stop it because he didn't want his wife to find out".

Rep. Elijah Cummings, who now heads the House Oversight Committee, has a hard time believing that Cohen was disappointed that he didn't land a position in the Trump Administration.

Cohen described a widespread culture of lying around Trump, as he sought to explain why he stayed by the President's side for so long.

In his final statement, Cohen laid out the stakes very clearly: Trump might not cede power if defeatedin 2020.

Perhaps most importantly, Cohen revealed that prosecutors in NY are investigating conversations that Trump or his advisers had with Cohen after the Federal Bureau of Investigation raided his hotel room and office in April 2018.

House Oversight Committee chairman Eligjah Cummings said it appeared Mr Trump had committed a crime but declined to say whether he should be removed from office.

Republicans argued that Cohen, who will start a three-year prison sentence in May for campaign-finance violations, tax evasion and bank fraud, was an untrustworthy witness.

Cohen's disclosure that he's cooperating with federal prosecutors in the Southern District of NY on matters he said he couldn't discuss publicly spurred a grave tweet from Chris Christie, the former New Jersey governor and USA prosecutor: "The words that he said today that would send a chill up my spine at the White House would be, 'I am in constant contact with the Southern District'".

Michael Cohen, US President Donald Trump's former lawyer, departs after testifying before a closed door hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill, in Washington, February 26, 2019. Cohen recounted a phone call in Trump's office days before the Democratic National Convention when Trump adviser Roger Stone told Trump that WikiLeaks would be releasing a "massive dump" of emails harmful to the Clinton campaign in the coming days. "He speaks in a code, and I understand the code because I've been around him for a decade". It was evidently of Mr. Trump and a woman, presumably Mrs. Trump?

Cohen said he had no evidence Trump had colluded with Russian Federation to gain advantage in the election. "In his way, he was telling me to lie".

Cohen's claims that Trump had advance knowledge of the emails contradict the president's assertions that he was in the dark, and it is not clear how legally problematic that could be for Trump anyway.

"And I said: 'I wonder why he didn't lie about that, too, like he did about everything else?'" Lying to the First Lady is one of my biggest regrets.

Cohen also gave the panel a copy of a $35,000 cheque dated August 2017 - one of a series he said Mr Trump signed to pay him back in instalments. "I respect her greatly, and she did not deserve that".

Cohen provided a lot of new insight into Trump's involvement in hush money payments, his taxes, his business and his 2016 campaign.

But Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Maryland) charged that GOP committee members were angry because Cohen "stopped lying to Congress for the president".

He did not offer any further detail on what crime he thought Mr Trump committed.

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