Michael Cohen’s father, a Holocaust survivor, encouraged him to cut ties with President Trump, the Wall Street Journal reported.
It was a turning point for Cohen, Trump’s former longtime personal attorney, who had been in ever-increasing legal jeopardy since April.
Maurice Cohen urged his son not to protect the president, saying that he didn’t survive the Holocaust to have his named smeared by Trump, according to a person who was told about the conversation.
Soon after, on June 20, Cohen stepped down from his position as the Republican National Committee’s deputy finance chairman. It led him to tweet his first public criticism of Trump: “As the son of a Polish holocaust survivor, the images and sounds of this family separation policy [are] heart wrenching.”
Cohen also told ABC News that his loyalty was to his family and country, not to the president.
Cohen pleaded guilty on Tuesday to evading personal income taxes, making an unlawful corporate campaign contribution, making a false statement to a financial institution and making an excessive campaign contribution in October 2016. He could face a prison sentence of 46 to 63 months.
When he acknowledged the charges, Cohen said he was directed to violate campaign law at the direction of a candidate for federal office, essentially implicating his former boss.