Witness tampering charges emerge against Adam Schiff for his handling of Michael Cohen testimony
President Trump pushed the argument Sunday evening that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff was complicit in "colluding" with former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen and should be investigated for ethics violations.The term of art used by lawyers for this kind of witness preparation is "woodshedding" where the lawyers discuss testimony with prospective witnesses before a deposition and tell them the best way to answer questions. It is something that is done outside the presence of the other side.
Upon returning to Washington, D.C., after a weekend trip to Florida, the president retweeted reports and commentary about Cohen being coached before his public testimony before the House Oversight Committee last month.
"If Schiff wasn't coaching Cohen on how to go after Trump before his testimony and was just going over procedural issues, why didn't he invite GOP staff to sit in on these secret meetings? Schiff must be recused from future hearings while Ethics investigates his witness tampering," said ones of those tweets from Paul Sperry, a conservative author and political commentator at the right-leaning Hoover Institute.
Trump also shared tweets from Tom Fitton, the president of conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch, who said Schiff was mired in another "ethics scandal."
Last week, Cohen told House investigators that staff for Schiff, D-Calif., traveled to New York four times to meet with him for a total of 10 hours about a variety of topics right before his appearance before the oversight panel, according to Fox News.
House Intelligence Committee ranking member Devin Nunes, R-Calif., suggested there was "witness tampering" and fellow Republican member, Rep. Mike Turner wrote a letter to Cohen demanding answers. “Clearly, there will be questions as to whether or not such contacts, if they occurred, constitute witness tampering, obstruction of justice, or collusion, collaboration, and cooperation between the House Democratic majority, their staff, and you,” the Ohio lawmaker wrote.
Both Schiff's and Cohen's teams argued they did nothing wrong.