One of President Donald Trump’s longtime legal advisers said he warned the president in a phone call Friday that Michael Cohen, Trump’s personal lawyer and close friend, would turn against the president and cooperate with federal prosecutors if faced with criminal charges, reports The Wall Street Journal.
According to WSJ, Trump made the call seeking advice from Jay Goldberg, who represented Trump in the 1990s and early 2000s. Goldberg said he cautioned the president not to trust Cohen. On a scale of 100 to 1, where 100 is fully protecting the president, Cohen “isn’t even a 1,” he said he told Trump.
“Michael will never stand up [for you]” if charged by the government, Goldberg said he cautioned the president.
Goldberg said the volume of correspondence taken and the potential pressure the government can bring to bear on Cohen to testify put the president in more potential peril from the Cohen matter than from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
In the call, according to WSJ, Goldberg, who represented Trump in his divorces and real-estate matters, said he told the president that Cohen could even agree to wear a wire and try to record conversations with Trump. “You have to be alert,” Goldberg said he told the president. “I don’t care what Michael says.”
Prompted by the president for his advice, he also said he recommended Trump fire Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general who appointed Mueller.
You can be sure Trump is taking seriously any advice Goldberg, who is now 85, is giving him.
I've met with Goldberg as part of a group in his prime years. He is sharp--very sharp. When I commented on a point during a meeting in his office, he immediately nailed my accent almost down to the town I group up in. Pretty amazing. No one before or since has done that.
He was certainly one of the top lawyers in Manhattan.
When Armand Hammer was under prosecution for making illegal contributions to President Richard M. Nixon's re-election campaign, he turned to Goldberg.
When Hammer first met with Goldberg, he bought out an entire restaurant so that the two could talk privately over dinner. (He also had the NYPD block off part of the sidewalk and street where they met.) Hammer knew he needed Goldberg.
Robert F. Kennedy, P. Diddy, Willie Nelson, and the Rolling Stones have also been clients of his.
People take Goldberg very seriously and no doubt Trump is among them.