House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff sounds thoroughly uninterested in helping President Trump’s former lawyer avoid his prison time.
Asked about Michael Cohen’s request to delay the fulfillment of his conviction on Monday, Schiff told CNN, “I don’t get involved in sentencing matters as a practice. I never have in Congress and that’s been my policy.”
Cohen, Trump’s former personal attorney, has been seeking a proverbial stay of execution in the ostensible interest of being “readily accessible and immediately available” to Congress, according to Cohen’s lawyers.
Cohen claimed he has recently gotten access to a hard drive that includes 14 million files. Among these are e-mails, voice recordings, and other information that could be pertinent to the House’s ongoing investigations into both Trump and his 2016 campaign.
The “substantial trove of new information,” as well as Cohen’s touted cooperation with authorities so far, are the basis for his representation lobbying the Southern District of New York for a delay to his incarceration. That might be a difficult pitch, however, considering that his “cooperation” has been inconsistent.
Still, his lawyers seem confident. “There is no doubt that Mr. Cohen’s testimony, both public and private, has contributed substantially, with documents and other evidence, to triggering additional areas for investigation by law enforcement authorities and Congress,” they wrote.
“We hope that this memorandum demonstrates that Mr. Cohen needs to be readily accessible and immediately available to provide ongoing assistance to Congress in order for it to fulfill its executive branch oversight responsibilities,” they concluded. “However, with 30 days left before he surrenders to prison, time is no longer a luxury he is capable of.”
If Cohen truly wants to help, Schiff is more than willing to allow him. “We continue to encourage Mr. Cohen to provide us any materials that he has that are relevant to our investigation,” Schiff responded. “We will continue to do so and hope that he has additional information to offer.”
The question that remains is whether Cohen feels as helpful and patriotic if he does not get something out of it. In the past, that in particular has been a bit of a problem.