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Opinion Talk About Swamp: Michael Cohen Made $1.2 Million Simply For Knowing Trump

20:42  14 may  2018
20:42  14 may  2018 Source:   thefederalist.com

Michael Cohen Reportedly Gained Access to $774,000 During 2016 Campaign

  Michael Cohen Reportedly Gained Access to $774,000 During 2016 Campaign A new report is providing some insight into Trump lawyer Michael Cohen 's financial situation during the 2016 election. According to The Wall Street Journal, Cohen “gained access” to a total of $774,000 through two separate financial transactions during 2016:In February 2016, as Mr. Trump’s fortunes as a presidential candidate rose, Mr. Cohen nearly doubled the amount he could use on a bank credit line tied to his Manhattan apartment, increasing his ability to borrow by $245,000, according to real-estate records.

Recent revelations surrounding the business clients of Michael Cohen , Donald Trump ’s personal attorney, demonstrate the While Avenatti’s original report claimed Novartis paid Cohen just under 0,000, the company later confirmed payments totaling three times that amount, or $ 1 . 2 million .

President Trump 's personal lawyer, Michael Cohen , reportedly signed a $ 1 . 2 million contract with drugmaker Novartis in February 2017 on the promise that he could help the company gain access to the president and administration insiders.

Talk About Swamp: Michael Cohen Made $1.2 Million Simply For Knowing Trump © The Federalist Talk About Swamp: Michael Cohen Made $1.2 Million Simply For Knowing Trump

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

Recent revelations surrounding the business clients of Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s personal attorney, demonstrate the seedy underbelly of the lobbying business in Washington. At least one company that hired Cohen admitted that it got suckered by someone who couldn’t deliver what he promised. Many companies consider these types of expenditures the cost of doing business.

Exclusive: AT&T CEO says hiring Trump lawyer was 'big mistake' - memo

  Exclusive: AT&T CEO says hiring Trump lawyer was 'big mistake' - memo Hiring President Donald Trump's personal attorney, Michael Cohen, was a "big mistake," AT&T Inc (T.N) Chief Executive Officer Randall Stephenson said in an employee memo, reviewed by Reuters, that went out Friday morning.AT&T's head lobbyist, Bob Quinn, who oversaw the hiring of Cohen, is retiring, according to the memo.

Till that moment, Cohen was better known as Trump 's personal lawyer and “fixer,” as well as an Novartis is saying it paid Michael Cohen $ 1 . 2 Million dollars for a single meeting that produced nothing? These are just not mistakes that large companies with armies of lawyers make . https

What the Michael Cohen scandal reveals about corporate lobbying in the age of Trump . Michael Cohen 's corporate clients say they paid him millions of dollars to help them achieve their policy goals in Washington.

Last Tuesday, attorney Michael Avenatti released a report claiming that Cohen’s firm, Essential Consultants, received millions of dollars in payments from various companies, including one linked to a Russian oligarch. Avenatti, a Trump critic, represents onscreen prostitute Stormy Daniels in a lawsuit seeking to nullify a non-disclosure agreement Daniels and Cohen reached regarding the former’s alleged affair with Trump.

Although the claims in the Avenatti report were unverified, and Cohen’s attorney has disputed its details, several companies named in the report spent Wednesday responding to its allegations. Among other companies, telecommunications giant AT&T and pharmaceutical company Novartis confirmed payments to Cohen’s consulting firm.

White House: AT&T's Cohen payment shows Trump can't be bought

  White House: AT&T's Cohen payment shows Trump can't be bought The White House pushed back on concerns regarding newly-discovered payments to President Trump's lawyer Michael Cohen from corporations looking to lobby the White House, arguing that the episode proves Trump will not cater to "special interests." Cohen has been at the center of a legal storm for weeks since federal agents raided his office following a referral from special counsel Robert Mueller.This week, reports surfaced that corporate clients including AT&T and Novartis paid Cohen hundreds of thousands of dollars after the 2016 election after he promised access to the new administration.

White House: AT&T's payments to Trump lawyer Michael Cohen 'the definition of draining the Novartis said it paid Essential Consultants $ 1 . 2 million over the course of a year for guidance on the Trump "This is actually the definition of draining the swamp , something the president talked about

Noting that the company ultimately agreed to a one-year, $ 1 . 2 million contract with Cohen , STAT reported the "employee could Who at AT&T and Novartis authorized the deals with Michael Cohen ? Did Donald Trump know about these payments? Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

While Avenatti’s original report claimed Novartis paid Cohen just under $400,000, the company later confirmed payments totaling three times that amount, or $1.2 million. In an interview, an unnamed Novartis employee gave commentary into what amounts to a corporate comedy of errors:

He [Cohen] reached out to us…With a new Administration coming in, basically, all the traditional contacts disappeared and they were all new players. We were trying to find an inroad into the Administration. Cohen promised access to not just Trump, but also the circle around him. It was almost as if we were hiring him as a lobbyist.

To paraphrase the British phrase used when a new sovereign assumes the throne: “The (Old) Swamp is dead! Long live The (New) Swamp!”

Unfortunately for Novartis, however, the firm locked itself into a one-year agreement at a $100,000 monthly retainer—ridiculously high by most Washington lobbying standards—only to discover that Cohen could not deliver. According to the Novartis employee, it took but one meeting for the bloom to come off of the rose: “At first it all sounded impressive, but toward the end of the meeting, everyone realized this was probably a slippery slope to engage him. So they decided not to really engage Cohen for any activities after that.”

Michael Cohen Reached Out to Ford Too But They Apparently Rejected Offer

  Michael Cohen Reached Out to Ford Too But They Apparently Rejected Offer This week we've all learned about overtures Trump lawyer Michael Cohen made to companies as the new President was heading into office, and now there's news of another.Per The Wall Street Journal, Cohen reached out to Ford “but was quickly rebuffed.

Novartis also says it talked to Robert Mueller's investigators about its payments to Cohen 's shell company, which also was used to make a Drug giant Novartis reveals it paid Trump lawyer Michael Cohen $ 1 . 2 million for health-care policy consulting work that he proved "unable" to do.

Here’s what Trump voters should know . Michael Cohen was the president’s personal attorney. “A global pharmaceutical company said it paid him $ 1 . 2 million to provide insight into health-care What did he do after its Make America Great Again, “drain the swamp ” message won the day?

Yet rather than risk angering Cohen or Trump by terminating the contract early, instead Novartis continued to pay Cohen $100,000 monthly—to do nothing, essentially—for the remainder of the year. As the saying goes, it’s nice work if you can get it.

AT&T and Novartis admitted on Wednesday that the office of special counsel Robert Mueller contacted both about their relationships with Cohen. In analyzing their behavior, assume that both companies acted legally—that their payments to Cohen were solely for consulting services, and not as part of some quid pro quo scheme directly tied to an official act, whether by Cohen, Trump, or anyone else.

On one hand, the companies exercised exceedingly poor judgment. Novartis CEO Vas Narasimhan (who was not running the company when Novartis signed its 2017 agreement with Cohen) admitted on Thursday that the company “made a mistake in entering into this engagement,” signing away more than a million dollars in shareholder money to someone without undertaking any due diligence as to whether he could deliver what he had promised.

Trump attacks media after reports of Cohen deal with AT&T

  Trump attacks media after reports of Cohen deal with AT&T Trump attacks media after reports of Cohen deal with AT&T"Why doesn't the Fake News Media state that the Trump Administration's Anti-Trust Division has been, and is, opposed to the AT&T purchase of Time Warner in a currently ongoing Trial. Such a disgrace in reporting!" Trump tweeted.

Mistakes were made . Joseph Jimenez, who served as chief executive of the Basel, Switzerland-based drug giant Novartis for eight years, says that he takes full responsibility for the company's decision to hire Michael Cohen , President Donald Trump 's former lawyer, through a $ 1 . 2 million consulting

Former Trump associates forced to run GoFundMe campaigns after being swamped with legal bills. Trump -supporting American Legion members complain bitterly about treatment of John McCain. They paid $ 1 million not to talk to Michael Cohen .

Novartis also vastly overpaid Cohen, even if it had engaged him for more activities than a single meeting. As I noted on Twitter, I could have cautioned them about the dim chances for Obamacare repeal for half the $1.2 million they paid Cohen. (If they had asked nicely, I might have done so for even one-quarter that sum.) Very few if any Washington lobbying firms can command a six-figure monthly retainer from one client, yet Novartis paid that much to a single individual.

On the other hand, consider the vast effects Washington has on the lives of big companies, particularly those in the health-care sector. In addition to Obamacare repeal, Novartis had interests ranging from the opioid crisis to drug prices to tax reform, each of which could affect their company to the tune of hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars.

As Politico noted, Trump’s “2016 victory rattled corporations enough that clients were eager to pay top dollar to anyone who could help them understand the Administration in its first months.” Because no one thought Trump could win—and therefore spent little time reaching out to him or his campaign in the summer and fall of 2016— after the election corporations felt the need to overcompensate, throwing money at anyone with a connection to Trump, in the hopes of ingratiating themselves with the new administration. I saw some of this myself in late 2016 and early 2017, when companies and financial firms came out of the woodwork asking me to predict what the new Congress and administration would do on health care. (Trust me: My offers didn’t come anywhere close to $1.2 million.)

Top Novartis lawyer steps down over payments to Trump lawyer

  Top Novartis lawyer steps down over payments to Trump lawyer Top legal expert apologizes for payments made by the firm to Donald Trump's personal lawyer Michael Cohen . The announcement comes after Novartis was dragged into the scandal over Cohen's payment of $130,000 to adult film actress Stormy Daniels just days before the 2016 presidential election.Mr. Trump has denied having an affair with Daniels or knowing anything about that payment but his new lawyer Rudy Giuliani has acknowledged the U.S. president had in fact reimbursed Cohen for the payoff.

Firms often spend sizable sums on lobbying. Novartis has “nearly a dozen lobbying firms on retainer,” for which it paid $8.6 million last year. In some cases, companies or industries have so many lobbying firms on retainer that the ineffective ones often attempt to take credit for the “wins” achieved by the effective ones. However, given how federal policy initiatives can affect both a company’s revenue and its stock price—witness the market volatility surrounding President Trump’s proposals on drug pricing—companies have little choice but to play the K Street game.

It seems ridiculous to pay $1.2 million to an individual for a single meeting, and it is. But only a smaller role for the federal government—in taxing, spending, and regulations—would bring an end to the types of influence-peddling stories like those surrounding Cohen. Unfortunately, it’s the price of doing business for many companies—and a symptom of a government run amok.

‘SNL': Baldwin’s Trump Celebrates the Anniversary of the Mueller Investigation with a ‘Sopranos’ Parody (Video) .
Baldwin returns as Trump, flanked by Ben Stiller and Robert De Niro reprising their roles as lawyer Michael Cohen and Special Counsel Robert MuellerBaldwin's Trump started the sketch by entering a restaurant in New Jersey to meet friends -- Kate McKinnon as Rudy Giuliani, Ben Stiller as his former lawyer Michael Cohen, and Mikey Day as Donald Trump Jr.

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