by WorldTribune Staff, March 4, 2019
Lynne Patton, an official in the Department of Housing and Urban Development, was thrust into the spotlight during last week’s Michael Cohen hearing when Democrat Rep. Rashida Tlaib infuriated Republican Rep. Mark Meadows by accusing him of using Patton, an African-American, as a “prop.”
Patton brushed off Tlaib’s tactics, saying she didn’t have the “resume of a prop.”She added that both she and Cohen know President Donal Trump “extremely well” and characterized the House Oversight Committee hearing as begin about one longtime employee disputing the testimony of another longtime employee.
But Patton’s presence at the politically-charged hearing primarly served to underline her public questioning of the tactics of special counsel Robert Mueller.
In a Jan. 18 Facebook post, Patton wrote:
“Many of you may already know that I considered Michael Cohen to be one of my very best friends. Countless people can confirm that we were virtually inseparable during my employment at Trump – and that he is, single-handedly – responsible for introducing me to the Trump family and effectively changing my entire life. I would be lying if I didn’t admit that my heart still breaks for him and for his family, with whom I had grown extremely close.
“What many of you may not be aware of is the fact that I can personally confirm that the ONLY reason Michael Cohen ‘turned on’ the President of the United States is because Mueller threatened to throw his wife in jail for up to 30 years. Period. She is the co-guarantor of a $20M personal loan that Mueller discovered Michael secured back in 2015 by falsely inflating the value of his taxi medallions – effectively making her part & parcel to the federal charge of ‘Making False Statements to a Financial Institution,’ to which Cohen ultimately plead guilty. This is also the reason why Cohen’s longtime taxi medallion partner, Evgeny ‘Gene’ Freidman, was granted immunity.”
The Conservative Treehouse, in a March 1 analysis, noted that Patton’s post was not only “rather stunning,” but “if this leverage against Cohen’s wife to gain virtually unlimited legal and political cooperation is true; and it does follow a pre-established pattern of unethical prosecutorial conduct previously displayed by Andrew Weissmann; then many of the issues surrounding the behavior of Michael Cohen do begin to make sense.”
During his plea hearing last year, the judge specifically asked Cohen, twice, if any threats were made against him in exchange for his cooperation. He said there weren’t any.
If Patton’s claim is accurate that prosecutors leveraged the potential prosecution of Cohen’s wife in order to gain his plea agreement – “then not only were those threats unethical, demonstrably prosecutorial misconduct and potentially illegal, but also Cohen’s denial therein means he would have lied to the court in his plea hearing,” the analysis said.
“This could explain how much control is being exerted over Cohen for maximum political value. Remember this same prosecution twice agreed to defer Cohen’s imprisonment to afford him time to testify to congress.”
Patton continued in her Facebook post: “Lastly, given that Michael Cohen is barred from discussing the Russian investigation when he testifies before the House Oversight Committee, it’s safe to conclude that his testimony … will effectively amount to nothing more than political theater and partisan fodder for late night hosts simply to embarrass a sitting President over past behavior he may or may not have engaged in as a private citizen.
“In closing, Michael Cohen always wanted to be famous. Sadly, he has gotten his wish. I personally stopped communicating with Michael when it became known in May 2018 that he was defrauding various companies (from a Korean defense firm to a global pharmaceutical company) for millions of dollars by falsely claiming he could leverage his connection with the President to their favor.”