Donald Trump complained on Twitter Saturday that his onetime attorney and fixer Michael Cohen secretly recorded their phone calls — an act the president called “inconceivable” one day after a bombshell news report detailed the contents of one of the alleged conversations.
But the president assured his 53 million Twitter followers that they have no need to worry about the conversation that Cohen allegedly secretly recorded with him in 2016 because he “did nothing wrong.”
In the conversation taped about two months before the presidential election, Trump and Cohen reportedly discussed hush money payment linked to the then-candidate’s alleged affair with a former Playboy model.
In the tweet, Trump said it’s “totally unheard of & perhaps illegal” that a lawyer would tape a client. “The good news is that your favorite President did nothing wrong!” Trump added.
Inconceivable that the government would break into a lawyer’s office (early in the morning) – almost unheard of. Even more inconceivable that a lawyer would tape a client – totally unheard of & perhaps illegal. The good news is that your favorite President did nothing wrong!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 21, 2018
The New York Times broke the news on Friday that in September 2016, Cohen allegedly secretly recorded a conversation with Trump in which they discussed payments to American Media Inc. (AMI), which had purchased the rights to the story about the alleged affair from Playboy model Karen McDougal.
The Washington Post later Friday also reported that Cohen and Trump discussed purchasing the rights to McDougal’s story of the alleged affair from AMI, the parent company of the National Enquirer. AMI’s CEO, David Pecker, describes himself as a close friend of Trump.
Despite purchasing the rights, the Enquirer never published anything about McDougal’s alleged affair with Trump.
A person who has reviewed the transcript of the alleged in-person conversation between Trump and Cohen said the recording was among the materials seized during an April 2018 FBI raid.
In the tweet, Trump reiterated his concerns about the FBI raid on Cohen’s office, home, and hotel room.
“Inconceivable that the government would break into a lawyer’s office (early in the morning) — almost unheard of. Even more inconceivable that a lawyer would tape a client,” Trump tweeted.
CNN reported that the FBI is in possession of additional recordings Cohen made of conversations involving Trump. “I can’t believe Michael would do this to me,” Trump remarked in response to the Times’ report, according to CNN.
Special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating whether there was collusion between Trump’s presidential campaign and Russia ahead of the 2016 election.