Hiring Michael Cohen was a 'big mistake': AT&T

13 May, 2018, 09:31 | Author: Julio Duncan
  • AT&T Chief Calls Hiring Michael Cohen as Consultant a 'Big Mistake'

He's been sanctioned by the US government.

"Our company has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons these last few days and our reputation has been damaged", Stephenson wrote.

"There is no other way to say it - AT&T hiring Michael Cohen as a political consultant was a big mistake", Stephenson's memo to employees said.

The AT&T payments were first revealed by Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for adult film actress Stormy Daniels, who also said a company owned by Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg and other corporations paid Essential Consultants for certain services.

Mr. Cohen also reached out to Ford Motor Co., but the auto maker turned him down, according to people familiar with the matter.

AT&T never asked Cohen to set up meetings with anyone in the Trump administration, and he did not offer to do so, it said.

More questions, and more questions, have been raised this week about the conduct and clients of Michael Cohen, President Trump's longtime personal lawyer and fixer.

"They are basically tied up trying to answer Judge Ellis for the last week who has said do you or don't you have authority", Giuliani said. That would have put his consulting fee at $1.8 million for the year.

SIMON: And what do we know about the contract that AT&T had with Michael Cohen, and what other companies had?

AT&T's head lobbyist, Bob Quinn, who oversaw the hiring of Cohen, is retiring, according to the memo. Cohen is also under investigation by prosecutors in NY for possible bank fraud and campaign finance violations.


An attorney for Cohen did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Novartis mentioned in a press release that the corporate had only one assembly with Cohen after signing the deal and finally determined to not pursue any additional engagement, however they paid him the total quantity anyway. The companies all acknowledged the payments.

According to the report, AT&T and Avenue discussed a deal that would pay the firm around $40,000/month but would not entail official lobbying - a structure similar to the company's deal with Cohen.

In the latest email Avenatti has unearthed, from February 22, 2018, Cohen is pushing Daniels' prior attorney, Keith Davidson, not to share the hush agreement Daniels reached with Donald Trump with anyone, absent Cohen's permission.

It is unclear what AT&T got from Mr. Cohen, a real-estate lawyer who worked at the Trump Organization for almost a decade.

He was correct. past year his administration sued to block AT&T's merger with Time Warner. The two sides have spent the past two months battling in federal court.

The Department of Justice in November sued to stop AT&T's proposed $85.4 billion acquisition of Time Warner, saying the merger would harm competition, lessen innovation and result in higher costs for consumers.

"I think it's pretty clear, the Department of Justice opposed the [AT&T/Time Warner] merger, and so certainly the president has not been influenced, or his administration influenced, by any outside special interest", Sanders beamed.

What a joke. AT&T spends millions on exactly this kind of lobbying and influence-buying all the time.

On Friday, Mr. Stephenson told staff the company's general counsel, David McAtee, will take over the company's Washington operations.

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