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Monday, December 4, 2023

Cohen: Trump’s ‘biggest fear’ is losing money, not being considered a ‘mega-billionaire’

Michael Cohen said Sunday that former President Trump’s “biggest fear” is losing money and not being considered a “mega-billionaire” as the former president heads to New York to attend his business fraud trial.

MSNBC’s Jen Psaki asked Cohen on “Inside with Jen Psaki” what would it mean to Trump if he lost control over several of his real estate properties. Cohen responded that it would be a “financial catastrophe,” suggesting that it is one of Trump’s “biggest” fears to lose his mega-billionaire status.

“It is the death blow to Donald,” he said. ”And I’ll tell you, during my tenure at the Trump Organization, I can tell you this has always been his biggest fear that he would lose money, that he would lose all of his money and that he would no longer be considered the mega billionaire that he tried to portray himself as.”

Cohen served as the former president’s longtime attorney before Trump was elected to the White House. In the years since, Cohen has been critical of the former president and testified against him to Congress in 2019, which ignited the New York fraud case. 

Cohen also said that he will also be attending the trial Monday.

“Obviously, five years ago when I was going through my torment, it would have been very difficult but right now, I’m looking forward to actually seeing him in the courtroom,” he said. “I’d like him to be able to look me in the face to understand that he’s created this and this is the first time in his entire life that he is going to be held accountable and have to deal with the repercussions of his own personal actions.”

Trump said Sunday night that he will make a voluntary appearance in court Monday morning in the civil case brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) over alleged fraud in his business dealings. James had argued that Trump’s company falsely inflated and deflated asset valuations to benefit either from lower taxes or from better insurance coverage. 

New York Supreme Court Justice Arthur Engoron found Trump liable for fraud in the case last week and stripped Trump’s business of certain licenses. He also suggested that Trump could lose control of some of his famed properties. 

Engoran wrote that James “has demonstrated that there remain, at the very least, disputed issues of fact as to whether defendants violated these statutes, intentionally and materially.”

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