Al Sharpton told MSNBC's Ali Velshi about his meeting with Michael Cohen, the former lawyer of President Donald Trump, on the day that it was leaked that he had record tapes of Trump talking about payments to a Playboy model.
Here's what he said
In the interview on MSNBC, Sharpton said that he had known Cohen for a long time because he had often reached out to Donald Trump about civil rights issues before he became president.
"I had happened to run into him several weeks ago," Sharpton explained, "we just spoke to each other, because I've known him down through the years, whenever we've had differences with Mr. Trump on social justice issues and have different, I would say combative kind of meetings, Michael Cohen who was the one who would arrange the meeting, he was the one who would try to get all sides together. Usually unsuccessfully, but he always was a straight honest kind of person."
Sharpton said that Cohen texted him and said he wanted to meet, and they had breakfast and spoke for over an hour Friday.
"I really sensed that he was very troubled," he continued, "he felt that he was being in many ways cast wrongly, and I feel that he was saying that he had been abandoned by Mr. Trump."
"He kept saying to me over and over again, 'Rev. I'm going to what's right for the country, I'm going to do what's right for my famil,'" Sharpton recalled.
"He was very very adamant that he was opposed to some of the things Mr. Trump was doing," he added, "like attacking the media, he felt that that was wrong. And it was a very very serious Michael Cohen that I met with this morning, about he was in a situation he feels, he was unfairly thrust upon."
Sharpton said that the very fact that Cohen could have met with countless other people but reached out to him was a signal to President Trump. He also said that Cohen wanted to make it clear that he was acting independently from the president, and that he wanted to do the right thing for the country and for his family.
Here's the segment of Sharpton talking about his meeting with Cohen:
Cohen tweeted about the meeting, saying, "I have known Rev for almost 20 years. No one better to talk to!"
The meeting came on the day that it was leaked to the media that Cohen had recorded tapes of Trump talking about a payment they planned to make to a former Playmate model to keep quiet about their alleged affair just before the election. Some speculated that the Trump legal team leaked the information out to undermine Cohen.
Sharpton said that he told Cohen that he was willing to help him publicly in telling whatever truth he wants to tell.