Michael Cohen’s Explosive Opening Statement: Trump Is a “Racist” and a “Con Man”

He also alleged that Trump knew in advance that WikiLeaks would be releasing hacked DNC emails.

Bryan Smith/ZUMA

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former lawyer and longtime fixer, on Wednesday delivered devastating testimony against his former boss, branding him a “racist” and “con man” with a long record of lying to the American public.

“I am ashamed of my weakness and my misplaced loyalty, of the things I did for Mr. Trump in an effort to protect and promote him,” Cohen told the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. “I am ashamed that I chose to take part in concealing Mr. Trump’s illicit acts rather than listening to my own conscience. I am ashamed because I know what Mr. Trump is: He is a racist, he is a con man, and he is a cheat.”

Cohen’s opening remarks included the explosive allegation that Trump knew in advance of WikiLeaks’ plans to release hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee during the 2016 presidential election. The opening statement, which was nothing short of damning for the president, also detailed Trump’s alleged history of inflating his wealth and racist comments.

“Mr. Trump is a racist,” Cohen said. “The country has seen Mr. Trump court white supremacists and bigots. You have heard him call foreign countries ‘shitholes.’ In private, he is even worse.”

Cohen will begin his three-year prison sentence on May 6.

You can read Cohen’s prepared statement below:

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

payment methods

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate