The liberal media was elated and shouted “We’ve got him now!” yet again when a taped private conversation between then-candidate Donald Trump and former attorney Michael Cohen was recently released to the public by Cohen’s own attorneys.
The media assumed that the release of the tape would mean bad news for Trump, but as it turns out it could instead be bad news for Cohen as it may disrupt and undermine his supposed cooperation with the federal prosecutors investigating him.
According to CNN, federal prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Southern District of New York were not notified ahead of time and were “caught off guard” by the release of the taped conversation in 2016 between Cohen and Trump.
That conversation was in regard to a potential plan to purchase the story — ostensibly to keep it quiet — of a Playboy Playmate who allegedly had an affair with Trump many years ago.
But CNN cited former federal prosecutors who worked in that particular office who suggested that the release of the tape may have complicated Cohen’s alleged deal with prosecutors and could lead to “consequences” with regard to their relationship going forward.
“They’d be very unhappy that Michael Cohen is putting forward some of the evidence to the media and commenting on it. They don’t like to be part of any sort of media circus,” stated one of the former federal prosecutors.
Another former federal prosecutor said, “Typically, they would be really mad at him,” but noted that the prosecutors’ concerns would likely be eased due to the fact none of what is contained on the tape would “adversely impact” their ongoing investigations and potential prosecutions.
CNN legal analyst Michael Zeldin suggested that even if prosecutors were caught off guard by the release of the tape without their foreknowledge, they probably shouldn’t be surprised as it only goes to confirm that Cohen is viewed as a less than credible individual that could prove a liability to their case, were they to rely to heavily upon him.
The first of the former prosecutors echoed that sentiment and stated, “The way Cohen has behaved in general on Twitter and other things, they sort of know what they’re getting with him, and if he had compelling evidence of crimes by Donald Trump, they could put a lot of their qualms aside about how he carries on.”
As things stand now, there is a worry among some that the release of the tape could backfire on Cohen’s supposed effort to reach a deal to cooperate with prosecutors.
It remains unclear at this point why Cohen’s attorney — former Clinton associate and attorney Lanny Davis — released the private conversation to the public, but it is worth noting that Trump’s lawyers had already waived their claim to attorney-client privilege with regard to the tape, so any potential consequences will be between Cohen and the federal prosecutors.
Whether the prosecutors decide to embrace Cohen as a cooperative witness or hold him at arms length as potentially hostile to their case remains to be seen.