Read: Michael Cohen’s record is his greatest asset—and biggest liability
While Mueller has reportedly been winding down his nearly two-year-old probe into Trump’s campaign and Russia, the newly empowered House Democrats have been gearing up for intense scrutiny of the Trump Organization and Deutsche Bank—the Trump family’s bank of choice for decades, which was recently involved in a massive Russian money-laundering scheme. Meanwhile, the Senate has kept up a steady pace of questioning witnesses with knowledge of Trump’s trips to Russia to scope out real-estate deals. The president complained on Friday about Congress investigating his finances, which he has called a “red line” in the past. “Now that the 2 year Russian Collusion case has fallen apart, there was no Collusion except bye Crooked Hillary and the Democrats, they say, ‘gee, I have an idea, let’s look at Trump’s finances and every deal he has ever done,’” he tweeted.
Read: Is money-laundering the real Trump kompromat?
House Oversight Committee Democrats are now poring over Cohen’s transcript for new names and leads, according to a committee spokeswoman, and the chairman, Elijah Cummings, has indicated that anyone Cohen mentioned can expect to be asked for an interview. “All you have to do is follow the transcript,” Cummings told reporters when asked who would be brought in to testify. Asked who could corroborate some of his claims about the Trump Organization’s alleged misconduct over the years, Cohen brought up names both familiar—including Allen Weisselberg, the longtime chief financial officer of the Trump Organization—and unfamiliar, including the former Trump bodyguard Matthew Calamari, and Ron Lieberman, the Trump Organization’s executive vice president in charge of management and development.
The House Intelligence Committee, meanwhile, plans to have Cohen back for a second closed-door interview on March 6. To say the panel learned something new from the president’s longtime personal lawyer behind closed doors “would be an understatement,” Democratic Representative Eric Swalwell of California, who sits on the committee, told CNN on Thursday, adding that “there’s very valuable new leads that we learned.” And Senator Mark Warner of Virginia, the vice-chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told reporters following Cohen’s closed-door testimony earlier this week that the Russia investigation “may be the most important thing I’m involved in in my public life in the Senate. Nothing I heard today dissuades me from that view.”
Democrats have always considered Trump’s decades-long real-estate career—and, in particular, his pursuit of massive building projects in Russia—to be fundamental to any serious investigation of whether the president has been compromised by a foreign entity. The Senate Intelligence Committee, despite being under Republican control, evidently does too; the panel has in recent weeks homed in on Trump’s 1996 visit to Russia, where he scoped out potential construction sites and announced his plans to invest $250 million in two high-rise towers.