Monday, 19 November, 2018

Trump laywer Michael Cohen, healthcare policy expert?

Michael Cohen leaving federal court in New York.   Mary Altaffer  AP Michael Cohen leaving federal court in New York. Mary Altaffer AP
Jodi Jackson | 13 May, 2018, 01:01

As for the AT&T-Time Warner merger, its fate will be decided by U.S. District Judge Richard Leon, who presided over a week long trial that wrapped up last week.

An attempt by the mainstream media to expose President Donald Trump as a member of the "swamp" backfired epically this week after he, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders and his legal team turned the tables on them and exposed their swampy lies. The companies all acknowledged the payments.

AT&T and Novartis paid Mr. Cohen through the same vehicle, Essential Consultants LLC, that Mr. Cohen used in October 2016 to direct $130,000 to the former adult-film actress known professionally as Stormy Daniels to stay silent about an alleged sexual encounter with Mr. Trump in 2006.

Aside from their legal battle, there's been a war of words between Rudy Giuliani and Michael Avenatti.

But earlier this week the Associated Press reported that Trump was "growing increasingly irritated" by Giuliani's "off-message media blitz".

Vernon Jordan served in a fixer role for former President Bill Clinton.

AT&T maintains that Cohen did no lobbying but was paid for his insight into the administration. Jordan, occasionally called the "First Friend", helped White House intern Monica Lewinsky find a job after Clinton ended his intimate relationship with her in May 1997. "Novartis paid Mr. Cohen hundreds of thousands dollars more than it paid its big-shot lobbyists in Washington".

Avenatti said he was aware of four months of payments to Cohen totaling $200,000. "They're paying a price, but they're doing the right thing".

Enron execs — they thought they were the smartest people alive. Until they went down.   PBS
Enron execs — they thought they were the smartest people alive. Until they went down. PBS

Harold Feld, vice president of the digital consumer-advocacy organization Public Knowledge, sometimes worked with AT&T on issues, including subsidies to defray the cost of telephone service to low income Americans, and sometimes against it. Ron Wyden of OR, the top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, who sent a separate letter Friday to Cohen regarding the payments from Novartis to his shell company Essential Consultants.

Giuliani joined Trump's outside legal team in April to represent Trump in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into possible ties to Russian Federation. "Novartis needs FDA clearance for the sale of its drugs and supports rolling back [the Affordable Care Act]".

The documents detail the full scope of Cohen's $600,000 deal with AT&T and how his contract specified that he would provide advice on the $85 billion merger, which required the approval of federal antitrust regulators.

Another one of Cohen's corporate clients, Novartis, offered a similar explanation.

"Whatever lobbying was done didn't reach the president", he added.

In addition to AT&T, Avenatti's document revealed details of payments to Cohen's LLC from Korea Aerospace Industries, the global health care firm Novartis AG, and Columbus Nova, a NY investment firm run by Andrew Intrater, a cousin of Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg.

She said failure to inform the President, and get his consent, could expose Cohen to the loss of his law licence or other disciplinary measures.

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