Footnote in Tiny Type Reveals Trump's Repayment to Cohen

Repayment was included in this year's financial disclosure
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 16, 2018 2:37 PM CDT
Footnote in Tiny Type Reveals Trump's Repayment to Cohen
This Wednesday, April 11, 2018 file photo shows attorney Michael Cohen in New York.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

(Newser) – President Trump has submitted his annual financial disclosure to the US Office of Government Ethics, and the report reveals a payment to his personal attorney, Michael Cohen, the AP reports. The value of the payment ranged from $100,001 to $250,000. Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani revealed earlier this month that Trump repaid Cohen for a $130,000 hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels. Daniels says she had an affair with the president. Trump denies it. The mandatory filing says that "in 2016 expenses were incurred by one of Donald J. Trump's attorneys, Michael Cohen." It says Trump "fully reimbursed Mr. Cohen in 2017." Trump's 2017 filing, covering January 2016 through the first few months of 2017, did not list the repayment; this report includes all of 2017 and part of 2018.

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The disclosure comes in a footnote to the report. No mention was made of a $130,000 payment to Daniels to keep her quiet about an alleged affair. A footnote in tiny type on page 45 of the 92 page document says the president "fully reimbursed" Cohen for "expenses" ranging from $100,001 to $250,000. The report says Trump did not have to disclose the payment but is doing so "in the interest of transparency." The OGE sent a letter to the Justice Department asserting that Cohen's payment to a third party should have been revealed in Trump's 2017 financial disclosure filing as a liability, but was not, CBS News reports. On Wednesday, the OGE's acting director gave the DOJ both the 2017 and 2018 filings, "because you may find the disclosure relevant to any inquiry you may be pursuing." Former OGE Director Walter Shaub tweeted that the move was "tantamount to a criminal referral." (Read more Michael Cohen stories.)

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