Jonathan Turley Says Michael Cohen’s Testimony Helped Trump Because It Showed He Was Following His ‘Directions’

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George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley said Monday that former attorney Michael Cohen’s testimony for the prosecution helped former President Donald Trump by portraying him as a client following “directions” from his attorney.

Cohen, a lawyer for Trump who pled guilty to charges of lying to Congress in 2018 and who was accused of perjury by a federal judge in March, took the stand Monday to testify in the case centered around a $130,000 payout to porn star Stormy Daniels. Turley criticized Cohen for taping Trump without his knowledge or consent, and said that he felt Trump’s answers in the recording benefited the former president because it showed he was following his lawyer, Cohen’s, advice.  (RELATED: Jonathan Turley Lays Out How Prosecutors Could Be Using Michael Cohen To Avoid Swift Defeat)


“The most important thing about the audiotape is that there was an audiotape. For most lawyers, watching… listening to this tape is, is really an appalling moment. The very idea that an attorney would tape a client without their knowledge or consent just shatters every aspect of professional conduct, but the tape really doesn’t offer much,” Turley told Fox Business host Larry Kudlow.

“Like much else in Cohen’s testimony, he gives these details of how he goes to his client and says, I fixed the problem. I arranged for payments. I’m, you know, this is not, this story is going to go away, at least before the election and Trump is saying things like ‘good, good,’” Turley continued. “Well, that sounds a lot like a client following the directions of his lawyer. But now the lawyer is telling the jury I think you should send my client to prison for doing what I suggested for him to do.”

Cohen, who received a 36-month sentence on tax evasion charges in December 2018 and was also disbarred, was a star witness for Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, testifying before the grand jury before Bragg secured an indictment of Trump on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records in March 2023. Cohen was also accused of submitting non-existent cases generated by Google Bard to a federal judge in December during an effort to have his probation ended early.

“There is nothing illegal here, what Cohen was describing is not a crime,” Turley said. “The prosecutors are making great fanfare over proving non-criminal acts and non-contested allegations. Yeah, there was a NDA. Yeah, money was paid. That happens all the time and so we’re still left with this bizarre situation of a trial over something that none of us have yet been told what the crime is.” (RELATED: Jonathan Turley Says Trump Trial Judge ‘May Have Already Committed Reversible Error’)

“The really funny thing is, I was watching this clip on Fox, they played, from one of the other networks where all of these experts were praising Cohen and saying he’s not lost his cool, he’s really remained in control and very buttoned down,” Turley continued. “This is his lawyer. This is basically his – these are the prosecutors that prepped him. Did they really think that he was going to lose it with the lawyers that brought him to this party? So the real test is going to come tomorrow, when he has an attorney who is going to go through a litany of lies.”

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