If you need to do a whole bunch of shady, sleazebag stuff, you need a shady, sleazebag attorney to handle it. The only problem is that, well, your lawyer is a shady sleazebag.
On Friday, the world learned that Michael Cohen had apparently recorded Donald Trump discussing payouts to cover up his alleged affair with a former Playboy model.
Those recordings may be evidence that Trump violated campaign finance laws in the 2016 election.
Being a woman who goes public with her story of having had sex with Donald Trump can get you stalked, harassed, and threatened.
Recently, it even got Stormy Daniels arrested in a transparent sting operation that many believed was designed as part of a harassment campaign against her.
In this case, we’re talking about former Playboy model Karen McDougal.
It has now come to light that, just months before the 2016 election, Trump spoke to his attorney, Michael D Cohen, about payments made to McDougal to ensure her silence.
According to The New York Times, Cohen recorded his conversation with Trump … and the F.B.I. now has those tapes.
According to lawyers and others familiar with the tapes, the F.B.I. acquired these recordings earlier in the year.
Remember their big raid on Michael Cohen’s office? That’s when they got their hands on them.
The Justice Department is invesigating Cohen over payments to women in order to bury embarrassing stories about Trump during his Presidential campaign.
If so, it is believed that this was a violation of campaign finance law.
The Trump campaign has insisted that it had no knowledge of any such payments. Considering the amounts of money exchanged, some find this hard to believe.
Karen McDougal says that her affair with Donald Trump spanned for nearly a year, beginning in 2006.
It apparently began a short time after Trump’s current (and then, new) wife, Melania Trump, gave birth to his youngest child, Barron.
During the final months of the 2016 Presidential campaign, McDougal sold her story for $ 150,000.
Unfortunately, she sold it to The National Enquirer, a tabloid whose owner is friendly towards Trump.
After purchasing her story, the tabloid declined to publish it. This is known as the “catch and kill” method for handling scandals.
Rudy Giuliani took a break from claiming that porn stars are worthless as human beings to confirm to The New York Times that the recordings do include Trump and Cohen discussing these payments.
He says that the recordings are about two minutes long.
Giuliani claims that Trump did not know that he was being recorded … which is what most people had figured, anyway.
However, Giuliani also claims that Trump did nothing wrong. He says that Trump was discussing a totally separate deal to buy McDougal’s story.
Giuliani says that Trump considered buying McDougal’s story from the Enquirer, which would have effectively reimbursed the tabloid for buying McDougal’s unwitting silence, but that the payment was never made.
Cohen is being intensely scrutinized under suspicion of a lot of things for his work on behalf of Donald Trump.
Though he was a firm loyalist for Trump (and Sean Hannity, his other client), Cohen has recently been changing his tune, and said that he will put his family and country first.
Some are skeptical, however, and think that if Cohen is really willing to put his country first, he should tell the Justice Department everything that he knows about Trump’s illegal dealings immediately.
Others are unsure of his credibility, but are inclined to listen to evidence such an an audio recording.
Some suggest that this revelation about Trump discussing payouts to McDougal might lead to his downfall. It might seem unimportant compared to Trump kissing Putin’s ass in what many consider to be an act of treason.
But breaking election laws is still serious. It matters.