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‘Missing the boat’: Ex-Trump lawyer hits MSNBC for coverage of Michael Cohen questioning

Donald Trump’s former lawyer Robert Ray took umbrage with MSNBC’s legal experts, saying they were missing the point when they expressed confusion at the cross-examination of Michael Cohen.

Cohen took the stand Thursday as a prosecution witness in the Manhattan criminal trial for Trump, who is charged with 34 felonies

According to commenters on MSNBC, Trump’s lawyer, Todd Blanche, was not doing well — and his strategy left them confused.

Ray, who also previously served as independent counsel for an investigation against Bill Clinton, disagreed.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I think the commentary is missing the boat,” Ray began. “This is not your usual cross-examination with regard to the cooperating witness. You have a situation where Todd Blanche has gotten the witness to acknowledge voluntarily that he perjured himself during his plea allocution.

“That virtually never happens. And if it does happen, I was always thought of as a prosecutor who essentially renders the witness’ testimony valueless.”

He explained that if a witness admits to perjury, the jury should automatically disregard it.

Read More: Michael Cohen: Trump mastered the art of the dodge to avoid accountability — until now

It is a similar argument made by other former Trump attorneys who have taken to cable television to attack Cohen as a “liar.”

“So, I have to tell you, you know, you can try to characterize this testimony as just the usual defense lawyer cross-examination with regard to bias and voracity, but this is — I will say, extraordinary,” Ray continued.

“Meaning I have done this for a very long time, it is very unusual to have a witness back up on questions of, you know, you pleaded guilty and some question about voluntariness because the government was going to put the hammer on me.”

Host Ana Carbara said that she understands what he’s saying, but Cohen’s revelation was not unexpected – he’s been openly talking about it for years.

Ray said that it seems like a set-up for the defense to say in summation that Cohen is a liar, and there should be no reason that they believe what he says.

According to the panel, the problem is that the prosecutors set up a litany of witnesses to confirm what Cohen testified to. Those people also have documents and information supporting what he said.

Defense lawyer and ex-prosecutor Jeremy Saland agreed that one thing the government side has not explained is the campaign finance breaches that were made in conjunction with the falsification of records. That elevates the charges from a misdemeanor to a felony.

Ex-prosecutor Chuck Rosenberg said he didn’t agree with Ray.

“I think it goes to the notion that this is a little bit more art than science,” he explained. “We may all have cross-examined Michael Cohen and may have all done it in a different way because we have a different goal at the end. I still cue to the notion he’s more like most cooperating witnesses that I’ve seen. I’ve seen a lot as a prosecutor, and that they’re going after a traditional bias, inconsistency, convicted perjury, you know, sort of approach. Maybe I’m wrong. I’m wrong all the time.”

Saland sided with Rosenberg, saying Cohen has already been to prison and has little motive to be pressured by the prosecution.

“He served his sentence, you know, they don’t have that kind of leverage, if that person were a cooperating witness and that person testifies at a trial, that they pleaded guilty to a crime they didn’t commit, that person would lose the benefit of their cooperation agreement because that would be perjury during a plea allocution, which is an automatic out for the prosecution to say you have violated the plea agreement,” said Saland.

See the debate below or at the link here.

Ex-prosecutor takes down ex-Trump lawyer on legal strategy for Michael Cohen

Source: Raw Story

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