Trump May Now Be Forced to Testify, and Could Be Charged With Perjury

Donald Trump just screwed himself over bigly.

In a really dumb tweet the president accused Michael Cohen of lying to Congress. And this means Trump can be called to testify under oath. Which also means he might possibly commit and be charged with perjury.

After Cohen testified before Congress, Trump’s allies tried to claim that Michael Cohen is a perjurer. They focused on his claim that he hadn’t sought a pardon from Trump. But this was a huge mistake because Cohen did not commit perjury.

By pressing the issue, however, Trump’s friends have made sure this ugly Trump scandal will stay in the public eye. Donald Trump’s criminal defense attorneys, Rudy Giuliani and Jay Sekulow, both allegedly dangled pardons in front of Cohen in their attempts to convince him not to cooperate with prosecutors.

If these allegations are proven to be true, both Giuliani and Sekulow will be going to prison for obstruction of justice.

But a new and much larger question has also been raised:

Can prosecutors prove that Trump was also involved in the illegal pardon offer to Cohen?

And Trump may have given the answer in the form of his own misguided posting on social media.

Trump tweeted:

“Bad lawyer and fraudster Michael Cohen said under sworn testimony that he never asked for a Pardon. His lawyers totally contradicted him. He lied! Additionally, he directly asked me for a pardon. I said NO. He lied again! He also badly wanted to work at the White House. He lied!”

Donald Trump has now publicly announced that he had a conversation with Michael Cohen about a pardon. Which means that he can be subpoenaed to testify about this conversation he claims took place.

He can now be subpoenaed by prosecutors in New York (SDNY) and also by investigators in the House of Representatives.

Trump Will Probably Lie Under Oath, and Cohen Can Probably Prove It

Here’s the thing: Trump will probably lie about the nature and substance of his conversations with Cohen.

And here’s another thing: Cohen probably secretly recorded his conversations, which means he can prove Trump is lying.

After Trump‘s tweet, Cohen immediately responded, also on Twitter, writing:

“Just another set of lies by . Mr. President…let me remind you that today is . You may want use today to apologize for your own and to women like Karen McDougal and Stephanie Clifford.”

As Lawfare Executive Editor Susan Hennessey pointed out, if Trump is accusing Cohen of lying, he will have to prove this by testifying under oath:

“The president is accusing an American citizen of committing a crime by lying about a matter which the president has direct knowledge of. He did the same to Comey. If he wants to accuse people of perjury, he should be willing to do so under the same penalties.”

Trump and Republicans have demanded that the DOJ conduct a perjury investigation into Michael Cohen. And now Donald Trump has just identified himself as a key witness in that investigation.

If that investigation does go forward and Trump is forced to testify under oath, he will indeed be screwed — bigly.