Donald Trump’s long-ago fixer Michael Cohen bashed his former boss Friday and said it was past time that he was indicted and locked up.
While serious charges may be looming after the FBI’s classified-document search at the ex-president’s Florida resort in August, Cohen suggested on MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House” that officials should simply cut to the chase and nail him on tax evasion charges — the way authorities finally nailed mobster Al Capone in the early 20th century.
“Let’s stop the nonsense. Let’s go after the low-hanging fruit. … Let’s put this menace, this Mandarin Mussolini menace, behind bars,” he told host Nicolle Wallace, referring to Trump’s China sympathies and autocratic tendencies,
Cohen warned that if Trump — or a wannabe “Trump 2.0 ”— wins the White House next time around, “the America that we know will not be.”
When Trump was in office, he tried to “change a democracy into an autocracy for his own benefit,” he added.
Cohen is convinced that Trump grabbed classified documents as he exited the White House and kept them at his Mar-a-Lago residence to sell or blackmail a foreign entity for “$1 billion” in an “overseas account.”
Trump may be a “stupid … bloviated Oompa Loompa,” but he’s “also evil,” Cohen noted.
“He is exactly what our forefathers, our Founding Fathers of this country, feared: that there would be a president that wanted to be more than a president, who wanted to be the autocrat, dictator, monarch, supreme ruler,” he added.
Will Attorney General Merrick Garland prosecute Trump? Legal experts told Wallace on Friday that he’s reluctant to do so but that Trump’s hoarding of sensitive documents at Mar-a-Lago is too serious to ignore.
“I think that Garland is the guy who really doesn’t want to do this, doesn’t want to bring criminal prosecutions against a former president of the US,” Neal Katyal, a former acting solicitor general and law professor, said on the program. But “my gut is, he feels he has to. … These are really serious crimes,” he added.
The challenge, Katyal noted, is that Trump is “such a rampant criminal in so many different spheres” that it’s difficult to keep up and prioritize what Garland needs to go after first.
Former Justice Department official Harry Litman told Wallace, “There’s never been a case in the history of the US involving such serious documents where charges were not brought.”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.