The House Judiciary Committee is preparing to hold hearings and request testimony from witnesses involved in the 2016 hush-money payments to ex-Playboy model Karen McDougal and adult-film star Stormy Daniels as soon as October, according to the Washington Post.
Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., a member of the House Judiciary Committee, told the Post there is significant evidence against the president and his alleged involvement in the episode.
“The fingerprints are all over this one — it’s not like a big mystery,” he said. “As with the evidence of presidential obstruction of justice, the conclusion seems inescapable: that [Trump] would have been tried had he been anybody else. And now it’s left to Congress again to figure out what to do with the lawbreaking and apparent impunity of the president.”
Court documents unsealed in July detailed how Cohen; Trump’s then-campaign press secretary, Hope Hicks; David Pecker and another AMI executive, Dylan Howard; and Trump himself were closely involved in a scheme to hide the payments made to Daniels and McDougal.
The documents, which include calls, text messages and emails exchanged between the group in October 2016, describe how Cohen worked to arrange a deal with Davidson and AMI, the parent company of the National Enquirer. Cohen’s plan was to have AMI purchase and bury Daniels’ story — a practice known as “catch and kill” — and then reimburse the media company for its expenses.