More voters believe convicted felon Michael Cohen than President Trump, poll says

Key Points
  • Voters say they believe President Donald Trump's former lawyer and convicted felon Michael Cohen more than the president, according to a new poll. 
  • Voters also overwhelmingly think Trump is not honest. 
Michael Cohen, former attorney to President Donald Trump testifies before the House Oversight Committee at the Rayburn House Office Building on Wednesday February 27, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Matt McClain | The Washington Post | Getty Images

Michael Cohen is going to jail for lying to Congress. Still, voters are more likely to trust President Donald Trump's former lawyer than the president himself, according to a poll released Tuesday.

Following Cohen's explosive testimony to Congress last week, 50 percent of voters say they believe Cohen more than Trump, a Quinnipiac University poll found. Only 35 percent responded that they believe the president more.

An overwhelming 86 percent of Democrats say they are more likely to trust Cohen, while 51 percent of independents agree. Only Republicans — about 79 percent of them — say they believe the president more.

Appearing before the House Oversight Committee, Cohen exhibited a check Trump wrote reimbursing the lawyer for hush money payments he made to women who alleged affairs with the president before the 2016 election, among other documents. Cohen called Trump a "racist," a "con man" and a "cheat."

Cohen will start a three-year jail sentence in May. Last year, he pleaded guilty to lying to Congress, financial crimes and campaign violations related to the hush money payments. Cohen admitted to lying about a proposal to build a Trump Tower in Russia.

Overall, 58 percent of voters — including 60 percent of independents — say they think Congress "should do more to investigate" Cohen's "claims about President Trump's unethical and illegal behavior." Thirty-five percent do not think Congress should take more steps to probe his allegations.

Voters have overwhelmingly negative views about the president's character, the poll found:

  • Sixty-four percent of respondents think Trump committed crimes before he became president, while only 24 percent believe he did not.
  • Only 30 percent of voters say Trump is honest, versus 65 percent who say he is not.
  • A mere 20 percent of respondents think Trump is more honest than most previous presidents, while 50 percent consider him less honest. Twenty-eight percent of respondents believe he is about as honest as his predecessors.

A White House spokesman did not immediately respond to a request to comment on the poll findings.

Federal prosecutors have said Cohen committed felonies "in coordination with and at the direction" of Trump.

The telephone poll surveyed 1,120 voters nationwide and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.

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