The White House refused to address new allegations surfaced by Buzzfeed that former presidential attorney Michael Cohen was instructed by President Donald Trump to lie to Congress in an interview on the Fox News Channel Friday.
Buzzfeed published a bombshell report Thursday evening alleging that Trump explicitly asked Cohen to lie to Congress about a real estate deal the Trump Organization was pursuing in Congress.
“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 claimed.
Cohen previously pleaded guilty in federal court to lying to Congress about the timeline concerning a real estate deal in Moscow, though he did not say in his court admission whether he lied at the direction of Trump.
White House spokesman Hogan Gidley was asked repeatedly whether the allegations of the Buzzfeed story were true during his interview.
Gidley first replied, “It is absolutely ludicrous that we are giving any type of credence or credibility to a news outlet like Buzzfeed,” noting their original publishing of the Steele dossier after the 2016 presidential election.
Gidley was again asked point blank whether Trump told Cohen to lie to Congress to which Gidley replied, “This is why the president refuses to give any credence or credibility to news outlets because they have no ability to corroborate anything they’re putting out there. They are just using innuendo, shady sources.”
Pressed further on whether the allegations within the story are “true or false,” Gidley could offer no more than: “The president’s attorney has also addressed this. I’m not going to give any credence or credibility to Michael Cohen. That’s just ridiculous.”
Buzzfeed’s allegation has spawned an intense firestorm on Capitol Hill with Congressional Democrats promising they will investigate the allegation. Cohen is slated to testify before Congress in February. (RELATED: Michael Cohen Agrees To Testify Before Congress)
Presidential attorney Rudy Giuliani also did not explicitly deny the Cohen story but impugned his credibility, saying, “If you believe Cohen, I can get you a good all-cash deal on the Brooklyn Bridge?”
Trump also referenced Cohen’s past history of lying and implicated his father in law’s possible legal jeopardy.
Kevin Corke, @FoxNews “Don’t forget, Michael Cohen has already been convicted of perjury and fraud, and as recently as this week, the Wall Street Journal has suggested that he may have stolen tens of thousands of dollars….” Lying to reduce his jail time! Watch father-in-law!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 18, 2019