CNN obtained a recording in which the president of the United States could be heard talking with his lawyer, Michael Cohen, about buying the rights to a Playboy model’s story about her alleged affair (years before) with him. The recording was aired exclusively on CNN during Cuomo Prime Time.
“I need to open up a company for the transfer of all of that info regarding our friend David,” Cohen can be heard saying in the recording. The reference to David most likely refers to David Pecker — owner of American Media, which publishes the National Enquirer.
Cohen was telling Trump about the company he planned to create in order to cover the purchase of the rights from American Media. The startling recording is a window into those confidential discussions that occurred between the now-president and his lawyer. What it also does is prove that Trump had “contemporaneous knowledge of a proposal to buy the rights to the story of Karen McDougal, a woman who has alleged she had an extramarital affair with Trump about a decade ago,” according to CNN.
According to Lawrence O’Donnell on his MSNBC show, The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, the tape was released to CNN by Cohen’s lawyer, Lanny Davis.
In CNN's exclusive audio, Trump discusses with then-lawyer Michael Cohen how they would buy the rights to a Playboy model's story about an alleged affair https://t.co/EDzC4YXDOb pic.twitter.com/OEn2kWRILp— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) July 25, 2018
Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for Stormy Daniels, was a guest on the show Tuesday evening and said about the tape that to him, it sounded like he was hearing two co-conspirators. He also commented on an interview he had just seen with Davis on CNN, trying to paint Michael Cohen, whom he claims is an “absolute criminal and a thug, as a victim and is anything other than what he is. He’s a co-conspirator. They’re trying to convince the American public of something that is just not accurate.”
His point was that Michael Cohen could come on any show and could stop the debates about what the tape is saying and he could clear it all up. But he’s not doing that, and he thinks that should tell everyone all they need to know.
When pressed by the host about what crime he is a co-conspirator on, Avenatti admitted it may not be on this tape but he insists that Cohen “has the goods on the president.” He faults Cohen for not coming forward and being open and honest about what he knows, that instead, he is hedging his bets. Avenatti then told O’Donnell that there are over a dozen tapes. Time will tell if Avenatti is correct — and if America will get to hear those as well.