July 20, 2018

Michael Avenatti says there are more embarrassing tapes of Donald Trump talking to his fixer, Michael Cohen, because Michael Cohen is an evidence hoarder.

In other words, lordy, there are tapes. Transcript:

WOLF BLITZER: I want to bring in Michael Avenatti right now; he's the attorney for Stormy Daniels. Back in May, you were suggesting very, very strongly that there are what you called Donald Trump tapes?

MICHAEL AVENATTI: Yes, good afternoon Wolf. Back on that May 30th, I stood -- and we're making that demand again today, if Michael Cohen, in fact, is a true patriot, as he wants the American people to believe and as Lanny Davis wants the American people to believe, then Michael Cohen should release all of the audio recordings. And I will tell you for a fact there's more than one, there are multiple recordings and all of them should be released for the benefit of the American public. You know, Wolf, the problem for the president is, he's got multiple problems relating to his relationship with Michael Cohen. ...Michael Cohen will go down as one of the world's great evidence hoarders over the years. This is a guy that never threw away an old cell phone, did not delete text messages and e-mails, kept recordings and documents. And that is a very bad thing for this president.

BLITZER: The fact that Karen McDougal got $150,000 payment from American media, the parent company of the National Enquirer, Stormy Daniels got a $130,000 payment from Michael Cohen. Is that just a coincidence that those numbers are roughly the same?

AVENATTI: I don't have knowledge, Wolf, as to whether McDougal's payments of $150,000 had any connection to the $130,000 payment to my client. But what I will tell you is this is the tip of the iceberg, the very tip of the iceberg, when all of this evidence ultimately comes to light, and I hope that it will all come to light and it will ultimately be released, this is going to spell a larger problem for Michael Cohen and a larger problem for the president.

BLITZER: Tell us why you think that.

AVENATTI: Well, I think it because I know it. And if you look at my track record over the last 12 months and the statements I have made and predictions I have made have been fairly spot on.

BLITZER: Do you think there are more than this one two-minute audiotape between the president and Michael Cohen, do you think there were tapes involving the president?

AVENATTI: I don't think that, Wolf, I know that. There are multiple recordings between the President of the United States and Michael Cohen and they're all going to be released today. After the FBI seized this information, this evidence, these recordings, a copy was turned back over to Michael Cohen, remember, he was originally in possession of all of this. There is nothing stopping; I want to be really clear about this, there is nothing stopping Michael Cohen from releasing evidence in the recordings that were seized by the FBI. Michael Cohen and the attorneys they have possession of this information, the FBI hasn't told them not to release them, the evidence the justice department has not told them not to release the evidence. There's nothing stopping them from releasing this to the American public. It is within their right and I would assert it is their obligation.

BLITZER: The potential as you well know, you're a lawyer, there's one thing that's stopping Michael Cohen from releasing these kinds of tapes and other documents, his own lawyers may be saying, you know, Michael, you're under criminal investigation from the US Attorney of the Southern District of New York, just cooperate and let's see what happens, that would presumably be good legal advice, right?

AVENATTI: Most of the time yes, but now we see Michael Cohen and his counsel effectively teasing the American people with potential tidbits of information. He should come clean, he should disclose this information, and I will assert that if he does that, that the truth will set him free and the American public will look differently upon him if he does the right thing. Wolf, this is serious business, I mean this isn't some game, the stakes are very, very high, as everyone knows. The American public deserves this information, and they deserve it now.

BLITZER: Bottom line, what's going to be the impact, assuming the tapes are not released, that Michael Cohen doesn't release the tapes, his lawyers tell him, "Don't do it." What's going to be the impact in the short-term and the long-term?

AVENATTI: Again, I think the amount of evidence and information that the FBI and the attorneys for the Southern District of New York have at their disposal is significant. And I think all of this is going to ultimately harm the president; I'm going to stand by what I have said in the past, I don't think he's going to serve out his term. I think this is going to be the Achilles' heel, if you will. And if this information is not disclosed in full, we're going to continue to push as hard as we possibly can and we're going to continue to be aggressive, because I'm in the interest -- or we're interested in full disclosure to the American people of these recordings, this is a big deal and it needs to happen now.

BLITZER: Michael Cohen is under criminal investigation, but he has not yet been charged with any crime. Thank you for joining us.

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