Michael Cohen Says He Deep-Sixed Racy Falwell Photos
Date Posted: Wednesday, May 8th, 2019
Evangelical leader Jerry Falwell Jr., asked President Donald Trump's former fixer Michael Cohen in 2015 to help make some 'personal' photos disappear it was revealed Tuesday.
During a call with actor Tom Arnold, Cohen said that a few months before Falwell's game-changing endorsement of Trump, the president of Liberty University solicited Cohen's help after someone obtained racy 'personal' photographs.
Cohen described the pictures to Arnold as 'terrible' and the sort that would typically be kept 'between husband and wife,' according to a recorded conversation reviewed by Reuters.
After the Falwells told Cohen someone had obtained photographs and was demanding money, Cohen flew to Florida and met with an attorney for the person with the photographs.
The attorney for the person who possessed the photos told Cohen they had all been destroyed after Cohen intervened on the Falwells' behalf and pointed out the crime the person was committing.
The Falwells enlisted Cohen's help the year Trump announced his presidential candidacy. At the time, Cohen was Trump's confidant and personal lawyer, and he worked for the Trump Organization.
Cohen told Arnold he wanted to keep 'a bunch of photographs, personal photographs' from becoming public.
'I actually have one of the photos,' he said, without going into specifics. 'It's terrible.'
Through a lawyer, Falwell, the president of one of the world's largest Christian universities, declined to comment on Cohen's conversation.
Sources also said Cohen was also responsible for helping persuade Falwell to issue his endorsement of Trump's presidential candidacy at a critical moment – just before the Iowa caucuses.
Falwell subsequently barnstormed with Trump and vouched for the candidate's Christian virtues.
There is no evidence that Falwell's endorsement of Trump was related to Cohen's involvement in the photo matter, and the source familiar with Cohen's thinking insisted the endorsement and the help with the photographs were separate issues.
Arnold spoke with Cohen on the phone on March 25, and recorded the conversation without the former attorney's knowledge.
Some details of their talk emerged last month when the Wall Street Journal initially reported on the recorded phone call.
While speaking to Arnold, Cohen admitting that he lied in at least part of his guilty plea in order to protect his wife, according to the Journal's report.
Cohen's connection to the Falwells sheds light on the formidable alliance between Trump and a man who, through his university, is one of the most influential evangelical figures in America.
Falwell's backing helped galvanize evangelicals and persuaded many Christians concerned about Trump's past behavior to embrace him as a repentant sinner.
Falwell's support for Trump has not wavered throughout the New York celebrity-politicians own tribulations, including the Access Hollywood recording of Trump talking about grabbing women's genitals and payoffs made by Cohen to hide Trump's extramarital affairs.
This past weekend, Falwell tweeted that 'Trump should have 2 yrs added to his 1st term' to make up for the almost two years of Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Falwell´s endorsement of Trump, however, did surprise some students and staff at Liberty University, the school in Lynchburg, Virginia, founded by Falwell´s father.
Date Posted: Wednesday, May 8th, 2019 , Total Page Views: 2108