President Donald Trump attacked his former personal attorney after a bombshell report from BuzzFeed News that the president directed Cohen to lie to Congress about a possible Trump Tower project in Moscow.
In a tweet Friday, Trump quoted a Fox News talking head before saying that Cohen was “lying to reduce his jail time!”
Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison in December after pleading guilty to a range of offenses, including lying to Congress and violating campaign finance law by paying hush money to women who allegedly had sexual affairs with Trump. Cohen has also been cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference into the 2016 presidential election.
Two law enforcement officials told BuzzFeed that Trump directed Cohen to lie to Congress. Trump also hoped to plan a trip to Russia during the presidential campaign to meet with President Vladimir Putin, according to the report.
“This is absolutely ridiculous,” deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley said of the report, according to CBS White House correspondent Mark Knoller, who added that Gidley said the accusation didn’t warrant a response from Trump.
But the president predictably did respond, going so far as to encourage investigators to look into a Cohen family member.
“Watch father-in-law!” Trump tweeted.