Before calling Giuliani to ask about a pardon, Costello — a former federal prosecutor who had worked with Giuliani — warned Cohen that it was premature to broach the subject, but raised it anyway, he said Wednesday.
The latest White House legal drama — whether or not the president's former legal fixer asked him for a pardon — has pulled back the curtain on a whole cast of characters whose comments can't always be taken at face value.
Cohen is also seeking reimbursement for an additional $1.9 million he was ordered to pay in fines, forfeiture and restitution after he pleaded guilty to breaking campaign finance laws, evading taxes and lying to Congress, the lawsuit said.
Cohen, in what is expected to be his last visit to Capitol Hill, brought multiple drafts of his 2017 statement along with emails with Trump’s lawyers about its drafting, hoping to back up claims that he made last week at an open hearing before the House Oversight and Reform Committee.
Mr. Trump’s core supporters — numbering about two in five American voters, polls suggest — have stayed with him through revelations of financial and sexual impropriety, painful electoral setbacks and the longest government shutdown in history.
In his prepared testimony and about five hours of grilling by lawmakers, Cohen — who has pleaded guilty to lying to Congress and will go to prison for his crimes — blasted the president as a “racist,” a “con man” and a “cheat.”
“He is a racist. He is a con man. And he is a cheat,” Cohen said of the president. Cohen, who has pleaded guilty to lying under oath to Congress, among other crimes, said he did so to protect Trump. “I am not protecting Mr. Trump anymore,” he said.