Mr. Trump’s attorney Michael Cohen is set to testify on Wednesday before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Cohen is expected to be less than favorable to the president and is likely to provide evidence of his criminal activities.
Among many things, Cohen will testify that Trump directed his charitable organization to repay a fake bidder for a portrait of himself. The picture now hangs in one of the president’s country clubs.
Cohen plans to say:
‘Mr. Trump directed me to find a straw bidder to purchase a portrait of him that was being auctioned at an Art Hamptons Event. The objective was to ensure that his portrait, which was going to be auctioned last, would go for the highest price of any portrait that afternoon.’
In addition, he will testify that:
‘The portrait was purchased by the fake bidder for $60,000. Mr. Trump directed the Trump Foundation, which is supposed to be a charitable organization, to repay the fake bidder, despite keeping the art for himself.’
In 2013, Trump tweeted:
‘Just found out that at a charity auction of celebrity portraits in E. Hampton, my portrait by artist William Quigley topped list at $60K.’
It has been alleged that this is one of three paintings that was purchased with Trump foundation money. Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold, who has reported extensively on Trump’s finances, also tweeted that he knew about a third painting that was purchased but didn’t know it was purchased with charity money.
Cohen is expected to make a number explosive statements in his testimony on Wednesday. He will claim that Mr. Trump knew about the Trump Tower meeting between his campaign team and Russian officials, including a representative from the Kremlin, that had promised “dirt” on Hilary Clinton during the election campaign.
According to Newsweek, Cohen is expected to say:
‘I lied to Congress about when Mr. Trump stopped negotiating the Moscow Tower project in Russia. I stated that we stopped negotiating in January 2016. That was false—our negotiations continued for months later during the campaign.’
In addition, he will say:
‘In conversations we had during the campaign, at the same time I was actively negotiating in Russia for him, he would look me in the eye and tell me there’s no business in Russia and then go out and lie to the American people by saying the same thing. In his way, he was telling me to lie.’
Cohen will go on to tell Congress:
‘Mr. Trump is a conman. He asked me to pay off an adult film star with whom he had an affair, and to lie to his wife about it, which I did. Lying to the First Lady is one of my biggest regrets. She is a kind, good person. I respect her greatly – and she did not deserve that.’
Cohen also said in his prepared remarks:
‘Mr. Trump directed me to use my own personal funds from a Home Equity Line of Credit to avoid any money being traced back to him that could negatively impact his campaign.’
Many are watching and waiting to see what this long-awaited day will mean for Mr. Trump and those closest to him.
Featured image is a screenshot from YouTube