A former Justice Department official told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that President Donald Trump may have violated his oath of office by attacking Michael Cohen for pleading guilty in the special counsel probe.
The president’s longtime attorney pleaded guilty to lying to the U.S. Congress about Trump Organization business dealings in Russia, and Trump lashed out against Cohen and praised his associates who had not revealed possible wrongdoing.
“That clip that you played earlier on the south lawn of the White House talking about Michael Cohen being weak as opposed to some other people,” said Matthew Miller, a former Justice Department spokesman.
“Who does he mean by the other people?” Miller continued. “He means Paul Manafort, who has torn up his cooperation agreement, and I suspect he means Roger Stone, who continues to say he will not cooperate with the special counsel.”
Miller said those comments may have violated the president’s oath of office.
“The president is talking like a mob boss,” Miller said. “He’s talking like the head of a drug cartel, not like the president of the United States who swore to uphold and take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”
Miller said the president’s actions and statements should not lose their power to shock.
“We get so used to the president acting the way he does that this stuff kind of rolls off our backs,” he said. “I think it was a remarkable moment to see the president talk about people who cooperate with law enforcement are weak and people who don’t cooperate or that lie to the Justice Department or that try to protect criminals are strong. A really, really awful moment for the president and awful moment for the country.”