A key claim in the salacious dossier alleging that Donald Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia has reportedly been confirmed — at the same time that Trump is threatening to fire Robert Mueller in what is seen as an effort to bring the Russia investigation to an end.
On Friday, McClatchy reported that Mueller has evidence that Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, made a trip to Prague in the summer of 2016. The dossier had claimed that Cohen met with a powerful Kremlin figure to arrange collusion between Trump’s campaign and Russia, a claim that Cohen had vehemently denied.
As McClatchy noted, the revelation comes amid reports that Donald Trump is preparing to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Mueller himself. There are reports that the firing of Rosenstein is imminent, which would pave the way for Mueller to be replaced or his investigation stymied.
Cohen himself is in the crosshairs this week after an FBI raid on his residence and law offices, though the investigation is not connected to Mueller’s Russia probe. It could still ensnare Donald Trump, however. As the New York Times noted, the investigation into Cohen could unravel some of Trump’s thorny personal and business relationships. It was Cohen who put together a non-disclosure agreement for adult film star Stormy Daniels, who claims to have had a relationship with Trump shortly after the birth of his son.
As the report noted, Trump believes the investigation into Cohen is a greater threat than Robert Mueller.
But the report that Cohen did indeed travel to Prague undercuts one of the most frequent claims from Donald Trump, that the dossier is “fake.” Compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele, the dossier details the efforts Russia had allegedly taken to help Trump’s campaign, including stealing and releasing emails from her campaign chair and the Democratic National Committee.
The most salacious claim of the dossier, that Trump had prostitutes urinate on a bed in a Moscow hotel that President Barack Obama and his wife had slept in, is also back in the news this week. Former FBI Director James Comey is releasing a book next week detailing his relationship with Trump, and said Trump appeared to be obsessed with disproving the claim.