McClatchy is out with a report about Trump attorney Michael Cohen that could prove to be a significant development in the Robert Mueller investigation. The news service, quoting anonymous sources, reports that Mueller can prove Cohen visited Prague in 2016 in the midst of the election. For those asking, 'So what?', the development takes a little unpacking. Among the allegations in the infamous Trump dossier compiled by Christopher Steele is that Cohen went to Prague and met with powerful Russian figures, including a Putin ally named Konstantin Kosachev. When the allegations surfaced, Cohen flatly denied them: "I have never (been) to Prague in my life," he tweeted, along with a photo of the front of his passport. President Trump similarly dismissed the allegation as false.
But according to the McClatchy report, Mueller now has evidence that Cohen entered Prague from Germany. The report does not say that Mueller can show he met with any Russian figures, but simply proving that Cohen visited Prague despite his adamant denial "could be quite significant," writes Philip Bump in the Washington Post. The dossier makes unsubstantiated allegations of collusion, but they hinge on the Prague trip. If Cohen was never there, "none of this happened. If he visited Prague? Well, then we go a level deeper." Andrew Prokop at Vox sees it this way: "There is no reason for Cohen to try to debunk the Steele dossier by lying and saying that he didn’t visit Prague at all if he actually did, unless he was trying to cover up extremely serious wrongdoing that happened during that visit."