‘Bombshell ending’: Kristy Greenberg on Trump’s lawyer challenging Michael Cohen’s credibility

Joining us now is former federal prosecutor and former SDNY Criminal Division Deputy Chief Christy Greenberg, who was in the overflow room this morning. Christy and I know you worked with Todd Blanche at SDNY, so by all accounts doing a lot better today. There was some criticism that he spent too much time. They were a litany of lies, but that he went into every detail and a lot of tangents. But certainly before the lunch break, everyone here seems to feel and those who've talked to were in the courtroom, had in the Oval salon that he really landed a punch, landed a big blow. So I actually thought he landed several punches today. I thought today was much more effective than on Tuesday. And the punches before what I know everybody has talked about of this call and the date and whether or not you know that there was the real discussion with Donald Trump about the Stormy Daniels payment at the date and time that he said on direct very confidently, that was certainly a a real blow. I thought it was I think in hearing it a little hard to understand because Todd Blanche not only got angry, but his voice just got went to such a high decimal. And you know he he was very high pitched and kind of a little confusing to follow at times. But he did land the punch. And one thing I thought was remarkable at least was Michael Cohen who had like a very even demeanor and didn't really respond, didn't raise his voice, seemed very even killed in in response to that, which I thought was was good. But it is certainly a blow. But for me, at least, even before that, the punches that really landed for me was when he was talking about the crimes that he pled guilty to in the Southern District of New York that did not involve Donald Trump and showing all of the inconsistencies about initially he pled guilty to it. Then in the civil fraud trial, he said he didn't commit those crimes and he said that he lied during his plea. And then now, well, he says, I don't dispute the facts, but I just think the prosecutors were railroading me and they threatened to prosecute my wife. And it came across in the way that it was presented really that Donald Trump, that Michael Cohen just really wants to blame everybody. He talked about blaming the bank, blaming the accountant, blaming the prosecutors, blaming the judge. He called the judge corrupt. This is a judge that I appeared before many times in the Southern District of New York who is now deceased. This was not a corrupt judge by any stretch. And so and then he lumped in with all of those people that that Cohen is trying to blame Donald Trump as well to kind of make that strategic point to the jury that yeah, Donald Trump is just another person that he is trying to blame because he's angry like anyone else. And why is he angry? One of the reasons that came out is because he didn't get the White House chief of staff job or AG job that he wanted and some there. So even though he testified on Tuesday and today that. Yes. He didn't want that job in the White House. He never wanted that job. We saw a series of text messages with him and various other people where he was very clear. Yes, he did want that job and he was very disappointed when he didn't get it. So Todd Blanche established motive. He established bias. He established hatred and animus towards Donald Trump. We heard a number of messages, really, you know, pretty despicable about how he wanted. He wants to see him behind bars. He would be giddy at the thought of him behind bars. I thought he landed a number of those punches today. And so, Christy, bottom line, do you think that he really undercut all the testimony and the value of Michael Cohen as a witness? And what does that do to the prosecution's case? So look, I think this was always going to be the issue. You have Michael Cohen corroborated in a lot of different ways by other witnesses that we had heard from, as well as by the documents. And frankly, in addition to that corroborating evidence, you also have common sense of of how this would have worked. And, you know, for the defense theory to make sense, you'd have to have not only Michael Cohen going rogue, but Allen Weisselberg, all of these people doing it without Trump's knowledge. And that really doesn't comport with what we've heard about how the organization worked and how Donald Trump operated. That said, you basically, it would be very hard for me to see a jury that would not have serious questions about Michael Cohen's credibility. And So what you're asking the jury to do is say, I believe him about this, but even if I don't believe him about some other things. And that is very difficult. I can say as a prosecutor, I never put a witness on the stand who is a cooperating witness where I thought they weren't being 100% truthful, that I had fully debriefed them. And then I felt very confident about their credibility as a whole. And so it is a difficult dance that I think these prosecutors are having to play, where there are serious questions raised today about Michael Cohen's credibility. Let me ask you as someone who's in the overflow room and and most of our viewers know this by now, you don't get the sense of what it's like to be in that courtroom. But what you do get is a look at the defense table, a look at the prosecution table, a look at the, a look at the witness, obviously. What was the energy like in any observations you might have had of Donald Trump, of interactions between him and his defense team or even the interaction between Todd Blanche and Michael Cohen? So I thought a lot of the questions from Todd Blanche, a lot of them were more open-ended, usually on cross examination. It's very short to the point. Isn't it true that isn't it correct? And you kind of control the questioning and that didn't really happen here. He asked a lot of questions that allowed Michael Cohen to explain himself, which I I thought Michael Cohen, in a very measured way, did. There were times at which Todd Blanche was frustrated. But again, it was because he had asked a question that allowed Michael Cohen to to speak. So I thought their exchanges were generally, you know, interesting for that. But again, at the end, you did see the temperature rise and you saw everybody in their overflow room, I think, stand up at attention, including what we could see in the courtroom from Donald Trump, where at times he had been closing his eyes here and there was really alert and at attention for that kind of bombshell ending before the lunch break.

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