House Intel Committee Subpoenas Trump’s Personal Attorney

FILE – In this Dec. 16, 2016 file photo, attorney Michael Cohen arrives in Trump Tower in New York. A House intelligence committee staffer says the panel recently issued a subpoena to President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, as part of its ongoing investigation into Russia’s election meddling. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

(CN) – The House intelligence committee has subpoenaed President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, as part of its ongoing investigation into Russia’s election meddling and contacts with the Trump campaign, the Associated Press reported Tuesday.

The AP said it based its report on an interview with a congressional aide on the condition that they remain anonymous.

Cohen is a longtime attorney for the Trump Organization, and he remains a personal lawyer for Trump. 

The subpoena for Cohen comes as the congressional investigations into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia advance beyond formal requests for information from Trump associates.

The president’s first national security adviser, Michael Flynn, has also received subpoenas from the Senate panel regarding his Russian contacts and his business records. The House intelligence committee has also subpoenaed Flynn, the congressional aide said.

“I declined the invitation to participate as the request was poorly phrased, overly broad and not capable of being answered,” Cohen told The Associated Press. “I find it irresponsible and improper that the request sent to me was leaked by those working on the committee.”

Cohen told ABC News Tuesday that he had been asked by both the House and Senate intelligence committees to provide information and testimony about contacts he had with Russian officials.

Cohen also told ABC News on Tuesday he received requests from the House and Senate intelligence committees to turn over information or contacts he had with Russian officials, but ultimately, he turned their requests down.

During last year’s presidential contest, Cohen was a sometimes pugnacious surrogate for Trump campaign.

In August, when Democrat Hillary Clinton was riding high in the polls, Cohen sparred with CNN anchor Brianna Keilar on air over the numbers.

Cohen demanded Keilar show him specific polls showing Trump trailing behind his candidate, aggressively opening his interview with Keilar by repeating “Says who?” each time Keilar mentioned Trump’s souring numbers.

Cohen also reportedly has ties to the Kremlin. In February, The New York Times reported that Cohen assisted Felix Sater with his efforts brokering a peace deal between Russia and Ukraine. The two men also reportedly met with Andrey Artemenko, a Ukrainian opposition politician.

The Times reported in February that Cohen, Sater and Artemenko met at a hotel in New York City to discuss their strategy to lift sanctions against Russia. Their strategy demanded that Russian forces withdraw from Ukraine and that Ukraine be allowed to hold a referendum to decide whether or not Crimea could be leased to the Krelmin for 50 or 100 years.

Cohen later brought the worked up proposal to Michael Flynn in sealed envelope, the Times said.

Representatives of the House and Senate intelligence committees did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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