As Capitol Hill gears up for what could be an explosive week of testimony by President Donald Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, lawmakers still aren’t sure they can trust the president’s once-longtime fixer.
“That’s a very good question,” Senate Intelligence Committee member Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) told IJR when asked if the committee can believe Cohen’s testimony reportedly scheduled for Tuesday. “But I don’t know. That’s an assessment I’m just going to have to make when we hear from him.
“He clearly was not truthful during the first interview that the Intelligence Committee had with him, in fact, that was one of the counts that he was indicted on, was lying to our committee,” the Republican senator added.
“I hope he’s learned his lesson and realizes how serious the consequences would be…”
Collins, who would not confirm Tuesday’s reported closed-door Senate testimony, told IJR that the committee will work to nail down exactly where Cohen misled lawmakers regarding the ongoing investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
“We have to go through what he said last time that was not truthful,” Collins said. “And we’re going to make sure to ask him those exact questions again and try to find out what is the truth.”
Cohen, who pleaded guilty to lying to Congress last time he testified on Capitol Hill, is also set to testify publicly before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on Wednesday before appearing at a closed-door House Intelligence Committee meeting the following day.
While Collins says she’s skeptical regarding how trustworthy Cohen’s Senate testimony will prove to be, the Maine senator is hopeful that Trump’s former lawyer may still provide crucial testimony before he reports to prison on May 6.
“I hope he’s learned his lesson and realizes how serious the consequences would be if he continued to dissemble,” Collins said.
Over the weekend, fellow Senate Intelligence Committee member Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) told CBS that he’ll “have to see” whether or not Cohen’s testimony can be believed.
Watch the video below:
.@RoyBlunt says he doesn’t know if he’ll be able to believe Michael Cohen when he testifies to the Senate Intel Committee next week, after he lied previously: “I don’t know that we [will] believe him this time, we’ll just have to see.” pic.twitter.com/bEbmU59Lxt
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) February 24, 2019
“I think the reason you have him back is when somebody lies to Congress in an investigation like this, the questions you might have asked the next witness don’t get asked,” Blunt added.