Michael Cohen Declares Trump’s Defense Attorney the SLOAT: ‘Stupidest Lawyer of All Time’ | Video

“On 34 counts, he was definitively the stupidest lawyer of all time, worse than some of the other ones that [Trump] has in his orbit,” the former president’s former fixer tells Rachel Maddow

A man and a woman sit at a cable news desk. They are Michael Cohen and Rachel Maddow. Graphics on screen talk about Trump being found guilty on 34 counts.
Michael Cohen and Rachel Maddow (via MSNBC)

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow interviewed Donald Trump’s former lawyer/”fixer” Michael Cohen during primetime coverage Thursday evening, providing his first comments since the former president was convicted on 34 felony charges.

Cohen described his response to the verdict as “relieved,” while adding that he wasn’t surprised by the verdict.

“The facts are the facts, and the facts are what prevailed here,” Cohen said.

Maddow noted that Cohen himself is the only person who had previously gotten in trouble with the law over the Stormy Daniels hush money scheme, spending more than a year in prison. Cohen compared Trump’s sentence with how he felt when being sentenced himself.

“You don’t feel good. Sentencing is terrible,” Cohen said, adding that he took a plea deal to protect his family. “Donald didn’t let it go in order to protect his family. He took it all the way.”

Cohen appeared on MSNBC accompanied by his own lawyer, Danya Perry, who explained how she advised Cohen to maintain his composure during the trial and shared her own frustrations with Cohen repeatedly being called a liar by Trump’s defense attorney Todd Blanche.

“Nobody’s a liar. No one’s a truth teller,” Perry said. “He has told lies and he admitted to it. And the jury believed him and they returned the swift and just verdict. And so I think all the preparation was put to good use.”

Cohen didn’t have a high opinion of Blanche, telling Maddow that he was going to give him a nickname: “S.L.O.A.T.,” which he said stands for “Stupidest Lawyer of All Time.” In a Fox News interview Thursday evening, Blanche shared that Trump had been involved in every decision the defense legal team made.

“You cannot listen to your client when you are trying to create a defense, a defense that is as important as this one is,” Cohen said. “Now, on 34 counts, he was definitively the stupidest lawyer of all time, worse than some of the other ones that [Trump] has in his orbit. It just made no sense at all.”

According to Cohen, any good lawyer wouldn’t “have listened to his desire for retribution or his desire to control how the case would proceed. That’s not how you run a good defense. I would never have allowed it if I was still with him.”

Cohen said that he doesn’t care what Blanche said about him, but cares about the opinions of his family and close friends.

“I don’t care what Don, Ivanka, Eric, Don Jr. — it doesn’t matter to me what any of them say about me,” Cohen said. “I know who I am and I knew what I needed to do.”

When asked about the truth of the old adage that justice delayed is justice denied, Cohen said that doesn’t apply in this case, given Trump’s 34 felony charge convictions.

“It’s accountability,” Cohen said. “It’s exactly what America needs right now. We need for accountability to be had by all those that break the law, because as we like to continuously state, no one is above the law. And today’s verdict demonstrates that.”

Cohen credited Judge Juan Merchan and his respect for both the judge and the process with keeping him off of social media during the Trump trial.

“To see him on that stand is to see poetry,” Cohen said. “It’s to see a masterful judge who was quick with decisionmaking.”

Cohen also sought to refute his reputation for being a bombastic personality, which he blamed on the media. Maddow countered, “We’ve all heard bombast” from Cohen. He replied that it was a persona he puts on for his podcasts.

Rather than anger, Cohen said, his big struggle during the trial was with “anxiety.”

“I was nervous because so much was riding on the result of this,” Cohen said. “And I wanted to ensure that my testimony was perfect. I knew that there could be no deviation from perfection.”

Maddow had earlier described Cohen’s journey from supporter to testifying against his former boss and mentor as “Shakespearean” — a contrast to Fox News’ Jesse Watters’ earlier Thursday comparing Trump’s story to a Greek tragedy.

“The confrontation with Trump itself, but the confrontation with Trump supporters and what Trump has been willing to bring to bear on his perceived enemies in the world, is something that a witness like Michael Cohen is now contending with and has been contending with,” Maddow explained. “And it is now presumably an order of magnitude different now that this unanimous all counts guilty verdict has been pronounced by the jury.”

Maddow had opened Thursday’s primetime coverage of Trump’s conviction by running down the historic moment, detailing the moments as jurors read off 34 felony charges against the former president. She also shared the headlines from different newspapers covering what happened Thursday afternoon.

Watch excerpts from the Michael Cohen interview in videos above.

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