Trump era adversaries Michael Cohen and Stormy Daniels bury hatchet

Pair will speak on podcast in first interaction since their legal drama ended 

Josh Marcus
San Francisco
Wednesday 03 February 2021 18:54
Stormy Daniels says she 'forgives' Michael Cohen

Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s former lawyer and fixer turned fierce critic, will air an episode of his podcast on Monday featuring an interview with Stormy Daniels, the woman he once tried to silence on behalf of his former boss.

Billed as “ITS MOST SCANDALOUS EPISODE YET” the episode will be their first public encounter since their bitter legal interactions.

Daniels, the stage name of Stephanie Clifford, is an adult film star who Mr Trump paid off during the 2016 presidential campaign after she claimed she had an affair with him, which he denies. Cohen was the one who actually delivered the payment, eventually in 2018 landing him in prison for three years for campaign finance violations, and turning him into a bitter antagonist of the president.

“A Storm's a coming, baby,” Ms Daniels said on Twitter on Wednesday. “(And not the fun way).”

“The truth ALWAYS comes out. I had faith,” she added.

Cohen, who now hosts a podcast, Mea Culpa, about the Trump orbit and Washington politics, promised in a press release the conversation would be a “no holds barred, tell-all interview,” and said it will “mark the first time the two have interacted and Cohen and Daniels are now on the same side of the Trump coin.”

In 2018, news of the hush money payment went public, triggering a legal flurry between Cohen, Daniels, and Trump. Cohen, who once said he’d “take a bullet” for Mr Trump, initially denied the then-candidate directed him to make the hush money payment of $130,000. Daniels, despite signing a non-disclosure agreement attached to the payment, sought to speak publicly about the affair, so Cohen sought a restraining order to stop her, and Daniels in turn sued Cohen, before making the media rounds on shows like 60 Minutes to talk about what happened anyway.

Eventually, in addition to going before federal court and saying it was the president’s money, Cohen testified before Congress that Mr Trump directed him to lie about the allegations and assisted the Mueller investigation.

In 2018, Mr Trump acknowledged that he paid off Ms Daniels, but said it didn’t involve campaign funds, and in August of 2020 a California court ordered him to pay more than $44,000 for Ms Daniels’s legal fees as part of her suit seeking to cancel the hush money agreement.

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