Michael Cohen’s wife, Laura Shusterman Cohen, has been standing by her husband’s side through everything that’s happened in the past year. About a year ago, Michael Cohen’s office, hotel where he was staying, and home were raided by the FBI after prosecutors received a referral from special counsel Robert Mueller. The raid was in connection to several topics, including information related to Stormy Daniels. The longtime personal lawyer of President Donald Trump has been in and out of the spotlight ever since. Michael pleaded guilty in August 2018 to campaign finance violations, tax fraud, and bank fraud. In November he entered a guilty plea for lying to a Senate committee, and in December he was sentenced to three years in prison. Today, Michael Cohen is testifying to the House Oversight Committee about President Donald Trump. Who is Laura Cohen and how long have she and her husband been married? Here is what you need to know about Laura Shusterman Cohen.
1. Michael Cohen Spoke Lovingly About His Wife & Family in His Opening Statement for Today
Michael Cohen released his opening statement before he testified to the House Oversight Committee. In his statement, he spoke lovingly about Laura and his children.
I am a blessed husband of 24 years and a father to an incredible daughter and son. When I married my wife, I promised her that I would love her, cherish her, and protect her. As my father said countless times throughout my childhood, ‘you my wife, and you my children, are the air that I breathe.’ To my Laura, my Sami, and my Jake, there is nothing I wouldn’t do to protect you.”
You can read Cohen’s full opening statement here or below.
2. Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz Asked Cohen in a Tweet if Laura Knew About His ‘Girlfriends’
In a surprising tweet, Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz appeared to threaten Michael Cohen and his marriage. He wrote, “Hey @MichaelCohen212 – Do your wife & father-in-law know about your girlfriends? Maybe tonight would be a good time for a chat. I wonder if she’ll remain faithful when you’re in prison. She’s about to learn a lot…”
Gaetz tried to later say that his tweet was about “witness testing, not witness tampering.”
Later that day, Gaetz tweeted, “I guess tomorrow we’ll find out if there’s anyone Cohen hasn’t lied to! I think it’s entirely appropriate for any member of this body to challenge the truthfulness, veracity, and character for people who have a history and future full of lies. That’s the story of Michael Cohen.”
Now experts are debating on whether Gaetz’s tweet broke the law, Mother Jones reported.
Cohen’s lawyer, Lanny Davis, said: “We will not respond to Mr. Gaetz’s despicable lies and personal smears…”
3. Laura Cohen is from the Ukraine & She and Michael Have Been Married More than 20 Years
Laura Cohen is from Ukraine, Newsweek reported. In a statement to the Senate in 2017, Michael Cohen said that he and Laura had been married for 23 years and were enjoying watching their children become adults themselves.
Michael’s younger brother, Bryan, also married to a Ukrainian. In the past, Michael Cohen came under scrutiny for a failed attempt to negotiate peace between Russia and the Ukraine, The New York Times reported.
4. Michael and Laura Cohen Made Significant Money from Taxi Medallions, Which Laura’s Parents Also Took Part In. Her Parents Own Property in Trump Tower.
Michael and Laura Cohen made significant money from New York City taxicab medallions, Newsweek reported. But now they owe $37,434 in unpaid taxes to the MTA (Metropolitan Transportation Authority), related to that business, New York Daily News reported. Medallions allow taxi drivers to legally pick up passengers who are flagging on the streets of New York City and they are limited in number, so people used to consider them a good investment. But ridesharing companies decreased their value.
Laura’s parents, Ania and Fima Shusterman, had participated in some of the tax businesses with Michael and Laura, according to Talking Points Memo. They also co-own property with the Cohens in Trump Tower in New York on United Nations Plaza. Back in 2013, Fima Shusterman had to take Jocelyn Wildenstein to court in order to get $73,500 in back rent from a home Jocelyn was renting from Fima in Trump Tower.
5. Michael and Laura Cohen’s Son Helped Michael Prove He Wasn’t Meeting with Russians in Prague. Both Laura & Her Daughter Have Been Subject to Harassment Because of Their Public Life.
Michael and Laura Cohen have two children, daughter Samantha and son Jake. According to Jake Ross’ Instagram, he will be graduating from the University of Miami in 2022. Samantha graduated from the University of Pennsylvania.
In January 2017, Michael visited the University of Southern California with his son to meet the university’s baseball coach. This trip was at the same time that an uncorroborated report had claimed that Michael Cohen had been in Prague to meet with Russian officials. Cohen said this was a false report. In a statement to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence in 2017, he wrote: “I was in Los Angeles with my son who dreams of playing division 1 baseball next year at a prestigious university like USC. We were visiting the campus, meeting with various coaches, and discussing his future. Media sources have been able to confirm these facts and I can provide you with proof.” He tweeted the photo above as proof, but many joked that a passport cover isn’t proof of anything.
In a statement to the Senate in 2017, Michael said that Laura and his daughter had both been subjected to horrific sexual harassment. He said: “My daughter, who is at an Ivy League school, and my wife, who is of Ukrainian descent, have especially been subjected to harassment, insults and threats … some so severe I cannot share them in mixed company.”
At least some of this harassment happened in May 2017, when he tweeted a photo of Samantha from a modeling photoshoot. Hundreds of people told him on Twitter that it was creepy to share a sexy photo of his daughter. He responded: “Beauty and brains you a-hole! It’s a modeling shot remake from an old Edie Sedgwick photo.”
Samantha told Daily Mail that her dad was just being supportive. “My father, who has always been supportive of my endeavors, was merely expressing his pride. There is nothing inappropriate in the picture and those who seek to make it something it is not are merely Trump haters who are using this an opportunity to stir up drama. I find it hypocritical that those who consider themselves liberal would criticize a woman embracing her body. There is nothing sexualized about the photograph… it is tasteful and it is demure.”
Samantha tried to find some sense of normalcy after her dad was sentenced to three years in prison, Page Six reported. She attended the New York Botanical Garden’s Winter Wonderland Ball a few days after her dad’s sentencing and looked stunning.
A family friend told Page Six that Michael only wanted the best for his wife and children. “He wants them to continue to live a normal life. They’ve been through more than enough.”