Michael Cohen is lucky, because as he faces the biggest legal challenge of his life and takes on the President of the United States there is someone available to help him who has been through very similar experiences: John Dean.
Dean of course was the White House counsel during the administration of Richard Nixon and during the Watergate affair. And it was Dean who eventually turned on Nixon and helped put him in such legal jeopardy that he was forced to resign from the presidency.
On Sunday President Trump tweeted, after the news came out that White House Counsel Don McGahn had cooperated with Mueller’s team, that McGahn wasn’t a “John Dean type ‘RAT’” because he wasn’t testifying behind the back of the White House.
“The failing @nytimes wrote a Fake piece today implying that because White House Councel Don McGahn was giving hours of testimony to the Special Councel, he must be a John Dean type “RAT.” But I allowed him and all others to testify – I didn’t have to. I have nothing to hide……”
The failing @nytimes wrote a Fake piece today implying that because White House Councel Don McGahn was giving hours of testimony to the Special Councel, he must be a John Dean type “RAT.” But I allowed him and all others to testify – I didn’t have to. I have nothing to hide……
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2018
Cohen, Trump’s former personal lawyer, on Tuesday pleaded guilty to tax evasion, campaign finance violations and making false financial statements. He also made statements under oath about his actions during the Trump campaign, which implicated President Trump in his crimes.
Dean gave an interview yesterday that revealed how he views current events and the role that Cohen may play in bringing down the president.
“John Dean, former White House counsel for Richard Nixon: “I think we’ve established today that we have a criminal president, and that is historic”
John Dean, former White House counsel for Richard Nixon: “I think we’ve established today that we have a criminal president, and that is historic” https://t.co/3bM6GNRnLS
— Bloomberg Politics (@bpolitics) August 22, 2018
Concerning Cohen’s plea deal Dean said:
“He has pretty much identified the President as a criminal. He said he did it at his behest. If Trump weren’t President, he probably would be named as a co-conspirator and indicted. It’s conspiracy. Watergate was a conspiracy. This is a campaign conspiracy.”
Concerning the Manafort trial verdict he said:
“It’s not surprising. It’s clear that jury went carefully through the case. I wouldn’t be surprised if they were somewhat affected by the speed with which the judge forced the prosecution to put [the trial] on, [which] made some of it confusing to them, but they seemed to get the big issues. They got the bank fraud, understood that. It’s an opening shot by the Special Counsel. It really sets up the situation that Manafort was in.”
When asked how he felt when Trump called him a “rat” for his role in Watergate Dean said:
“That just didn’t surprise me at all. Every day, he throws invective at somebody. I was trying to be the honest guy and stop all this nonsense of spinning and lying and twisting history. I was more distressed or annoyed by him calling the true public servants who have taken salary cuts to go to work for Bob Mueller “thugs.” That’s just so uncalled for. These are men who are committed to the rule of law, who are doing the honorable thing. It’s just disappointing coming out of the President of the United States. He’s just denigrating the office every day he’s there.”
John Dean is the kind of American hero who keeps America strong by protecting the U.S. Constitution and the rule of law. The events that transpired yesterday will restore faith in the legal process for many Americans, as they see that justice will indeed prevail.
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.