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Prosecutors: Trump picked Cohen to lie for him

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Prosecutors used their closing argument Tuesday to tell jurors that former President Donald Trump picked attorney and fixer Michael Cohen to lie on his behalf.

Prosecutor Joshua Steinglass used his time in front of the jury to hammer home some of the points made by witnesses and remind jurors that Trump picked Cohen, not prosecutors.

“We didn’t choose Michael Cohen. We didn’t pick him up at the witness store. Mr. Trump chose Mr. Cohen for the same qualities his attorneys now urge you to reject,” Steinglass said, NBC reported.

The case centered around Trump’s alleged sexual encounter with an adult film actress in 2006 and a $130,000 payment to her in 2016 to keep her quiet ahead of the 2016 election. Trump has pleaded not guilty and denied the encounter happened.

Prosecutors allege that Trump covered up the payment to Stormy Daniels and another hush money payment to former Playboy model Karen McDougal ahead of the election, falsifying records to claim they were legal payments.

Trump, 77, is the first former U.S. president to be charged with a felony.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg charged Trump with 34 counts of falsifying business records related to money paid to Daniels and McDougal. Bragg has alleged Trump broke New York law by falsifying business records with the intent to commit or conceal another crime.

Prosecutors allege Trump falsified internal records kept by his company, hiding the true nature of payments that involve Daniels ($130,000), McDougal ($150,000), and Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen ($420,000). Prosecutors allege the money was logged as legal expenses, not reimbursements.

Both Cohen and Daniels testified at trial. Cohen was the only person who directly implicated Trump in the alleged scheme from the witness stand.

On Tuesday morning, Trump’s defense attorney, Todd Blanche, aimed the prosecution’s star witness: Michael Cohen, the convicted felon who previously served as Trump’s personal attorney and fixer.

Blanche accused Cohen of lying under oath.

“You cannot convict President Trump of any crime beyond a reasonable doubt on the words of Michael Cohen,” Blanche said, The Hill reported.

Blanche called Cohen the “GLOAT: Greatest Liar of All Time,” and the “MVP of liars,” Politico reported.