People Can’t Stop Talking About How Much Trump Humiliated Michael Cohen
Last week, thanks to a report from Wall Street Journal, we learned that Donald Trump loves humiliating Michael Cohen. In that story, early Trump campaign advisers Sam Nunberg and Roger Stone detailed what they deemed an abusive relationship between the embattled president and the lawyer who fancies himself Trump’s personal Ray Donovan. Stone summed up the dynamic between the attorney—who is now under criminal investigation related to hush payments he made on behalf of Trump—and client thusly: “Trump goes out of his way to treat [Cohen] like garbage.”
Now sources in Cohen’s world are sharing their own stories regarding the years of mistreatment Trump is said to have inflicted on his friend and confidant. Cohen sounds more and more like a hopelessly devoted doormat begging for the approval from a sadist who delights in withholding his attention. A guest from Cohen’s son’s 2012 bar mitzvah shared a particularly telling anecdote. From WSJ:
Mr. Trump didn’t always demonstrate respect for his employee. After saying he’d attend Mr. Cohen’s son’s bar mitzvah in 2012, Mr. Trump was late, and the blessings were delayed, according to an attendee.
After Mr. Trump arrived, he gave a speech, telling guests he hadn’t planned to come, but he relented after Mr. Cohen had repeatedly called him, his secretary and his children begging him to appear, the attendee said. The guests laughed because “everyone knew it was very realistic-sounding,” the attendee added.
Showing up late to your lawyer’s son’s bar mitzvah and then making a speech in front of his family calling him a bootlicker is some graduate level humiliation.
Although Cohen displayed fierce loyalty during the campaign, serving as an outspoken Trump surrogate on cable news hits and quietly paying off porn star Stormy Daniels out of his own pocket to keep her from speaking about a 2006 affair ahead of the election, sources claim that Cohen assumed he would be appointed Trump’s campaign manager after Paul Manafort resigned or White House chief of staff. Sources seem to delight in telling tale of an anxious Cohen camped out in his Trump Tower office waiting for the boss to snap his fingers and summon him to D.C. in the weeks before the election.
That administration job never came and Cohen was largely ignored by the incoming president.
During the inaugural festivities, Mr. Cohen and his guests weren’t given priority access to the festivities, the person said, noting that the hurt was visible on Mr. Cohen’s face: “He was always just at the edges.”
Other slights included the president allegedly neglecting to reimburse Cohen for the $130,000 he borrowed to pay off Daniels.
Mr. Cohen even was contemplating “defecting” from Mr. Trump, according to a person familiar with these conversations. Mr. Cohen stopped complaining about Mr. Trump not repaying him around mid-2017, according to another person familiar with the situation. Mr. Cohen has said he wasn’t repaid by the Trump Organization or Mr. Trump’s campaign, but has declined to answer questions about whether Mr. Trump himself repaid him.
Any reasonable person would assume that the balance of power between Cohen and Trump has shifted now that Cohen could possibly flip on his old boss in exchange for not spending decades in jail over possible fraud or money laundering charges. However, the disturbing history between the two men seems to suggest that Cohen might continue to endure public embarrassment and the threat of dying behind bars in exchange for the briefest flicker of approval from Trump.
One source familiar with their relationship told WSJ about a time paparazzi just happened to catch Cohen dining with outspoken Trump critic Marc Cuban, implying that the photo op was a passive aggressive bid to get Trump’s attention. The source then claimed that Cohen became bizarrely sentimental and submissive the moment Trump called to complain.
Mr. Cohen sought to reassure him. “No boss, I had breakfast with him to set him straight. I told him he has to respect the office, to respect you,” Mr. Cohen said, according to this person.
Mr. Cohen said later in the conversation: “Boss, I miss you so much. I wish I was down there [in D.C.] with you,” the person said. “It’s really hard for me to be here.”
If there’s one thing people in both Trump and Cohen’s orbit can agree on, it’s that Cohen’s devotion to his client is deeply pathetic.