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Trump Hush Money
Michael Cohen testifies on the witness stand with a National Enquirer cover story about Donald Trump displayed on a screen in Manhattan criminal court, Monday, May 13, 2024, in New York. (Elizabeth Williams via AP)
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Star witness Michael Cohen directly implicates Trump in testimony at hush money trial

115 Comments
By MICHAEL R. SISAK, JILL COLVIN, ERIC TUCKER and JAKE OFFENHARTZ

Donald Trump's fixer-turned-foe, Michael Cohen, directly implicated the former president in a hush money scheme Monday, telling jurors that his celebrity client tasked him on several occasions to stifle stories about sex that he feared could torpedo his 2016 presidential campaign.

“Stop this from getting out,” Cohen, the prosecution's star witness, quoted Trump as telling him in reference to porn actor Stormy Daniels' account of a sexual encounter with Trump a decade earlier.

A similar episode occurred when Cohen alerted Trump that a Playboy model was alleging that she and Trump had an extramarital affair. The order was clear: “Make sure it doesn't get released,” Cohen said Trump told him. The woman, Karen McDougal, was paid $150,000 in a hush money arrangement that was made after Trump was given a “complete and total update on everything that transpired.”

“What I was doing was at the direction of and benefit of Mr. Trump,” Cohen testified, later adding: “Everything required Mr. Trump's sign-off.”

Cohen, Trump’s former lawyer and personal fixer, is by far the Manhattan district attorney’s most important witness in the case, and his much-awaited appearance on the stand signaled that the first criminal trial of a former American president is entering its final stretch. Prosecutors say they could wrap up their presentation of evidence by week's end.

The testimony of a witness with such intimate knowledge of Trump’s activities could heighten the legal exposure of the presumptive Republican presidential nominee if jurors deem him sufficiently credible. But prosecutors’ reliance on a witness with such a checkered past — Cohen pleaded guilty to federal charges related to the payments — also carries sizable risks with a jury and could be a boon to Trump politically as he fundraises off his legal woes and paints the case as the product of a tainted criminal justice system.

The men, once so close that Cohen boasted that he would “take a bullet” for Trump, had no visible interaction inside the courtroom. The calm was a marked contrast from their last courtroom faceoff, when Trump last October walked out of the courtroom after his lawyer finished questioning Cohen during his civil fraud trial.

This time around, Trump sat at the defense table with his eyes closed for long stretches of testimony as Cohen recounted his decade-long career as a senior Trump Organization executive, doing work that by his own admission sometimes involved lying and bullying others on his boss's behalf.

Jurors had previously heard from others about the tabloid industry practice of “catch-and-kill,” in which rights to a story are purchased so that it can then be quashed. But Cohen's testimony is crucial to prosecutors because of his proximity to Trump and because he says he was in direct communication with the then-candidate about embarrassing stories he was scrambling to prevent from surfacing.

Cohen also matters because the reimbursements he received from a $130,000 hush money payment to Daniels, which prosecutors say was meant to buy her silence in advance of the 2016 election, form the basis of 34 felony counts charging Trump with falsifying business records. Prosecutors say the reimbursements were logged, falsely, as legal expenses to conceal the payments’ true purpose.

Under questioning from a prosecutor, Cohen detailed the steps he took to mask the payments — which he had agreed to front — from his wife and his bank. When he opened a bank account to pay Daniels, an action he said he told Trump he was taking, he said it was for a new limited liability corporation but withheld the actual purpose.

"I’m not sure they would’ve opened it,” he said, “if it stated: to pay off an adult film star for a non-disclosure agreement.”

Cohen also gave jurors an insider account of his negotiations with David Pecker, the then-publisher of the National Enquirer who was such a close Trump ally that Cohen said he told him that his publication maintained a “file drawer or a locked drawer as he described it, where files related to Mr. Trump were located." That effort that took on added urgency following the October 2016 disclosure of an “Access Hollywood” recording in which Trump was heard boasting about grabbing women sexually.

The Daniels payment was finalized several weeks after that revelation, but Monday's testimony also centered on the deal earlier that fall with McDougal.

Cohen testified that he went to Trump immediately after the National Enquirer alerted him to a story about the alleged McDougal affair. “Make sure it doesn’t get released," he says Trump told him.

Trump checked in with Pecker about the matter, asking him how “things were going” with it, Cohen said. Pecker responded: "'We have this under control, and we’ll take care of this,’” Cohen testified.

Cohen also said he was with Trump as Trump spoke to Pecker on a speakerphone in his Trump Tower office.

“David stated it would cost $150,000 to control the story,” Cohen said. He quoted Trump as saying: “No problem, I’ll take care of it," meaning that the payments would be reimbursed.

To lay the foundation that the deals were done with Trump's endorsement, prosecutors elicited testimony from Cohen designed to show Trump as a hands-on manager on whose behalf Cohen said he sometimes lied and bullied others, including reporters.

“When he would task you with something, he would then say, ‘Keep me informed. Let me know what’s going on,’” Cohen testified. He said that was especially true “if there was a matter that was troubling to him.”

“If he learned of it in another manner, that wouldn’t go over well for you,” Cohen testified.

Defense lawyers have teed up a bruising cross-examination of Cohen, telling jurors during opening statements that he's an “admitted liar” with an “obsession to get President Trump.” Besides portraying him as untrustworthy, they’re also expected to cast him as vindictive, vengeful and agenda-driven.

Prosecutors are hoping to try to blunt those attacks by acknowledging Cohen's past crimes to jurors during opening statements and by relying on other witnesses whose accounts, they hope, will buttress Cohen's testimony. They include a lawyer who negotiated the hush money payments on behalf of Daniels and McDougal, as well as Pecker and Daniels.

Cohen's role as star prosecution witness further cements the disintegration of a mutually beneficial relationship. After Cohen's home and office were raided by the FBI in 2018, Trump showered him with affection on social media, praising him as a “fine person with a wonderful family” and predicting — incorrectly — that Cohen would not "flip."

Months later, Cohen did exactly that, pleading guilty that August to federal campaign-finance charges in which he implicated Trump. By that point, the relationship was irrevocably broken, with Trump posting on the social media platform then known as Twitter: “If anyone is looking for a good lawyer, I would strongly suggest that you don’t retain the services of Michael Cohen!”

Cohen later admitted lying to Congress about a Moscow real estate project that he had pursued on Trump's behalf during the heat of the 2016 Republican campaign. He said he lied to be consistent with Trump's “political messaging.”

He was sentenced to three years in prison, but spent much of it in home confinement.

Since the men's fallout, Cohen has emerged as a relentless and sometimes crude critic of Trump, appearing as recently as last week in a live TikTok wearing a shirt featuring a figure resembling Trump with his hands cuffed, behind bars. The judge on Friday urged prosecutors to tell him to refrain from making any more statements about the case or Trump.

© Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.


115 Comments

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Cohen testified that he went to Trump immediately after the National Enquirer alerted him to a story about the alleged McDougal affair. “Make sure it doesn’t get released," he says Trump told him.

And there you have it: Trump knew about it.

Cohen later admitted lying to Congress about a Moscow real estate project that he had pursued on Trump's behalf during the heat of the 2016 Republican campaign. He said he lied to be consistent with Trump's “political messaging.”

If course, the defense will try to paint Cohen as a liar. Remember, all his lies were in support of Trump.

16 ( +22 / -6 )

Trump was a co conspirator in multiple crimes

2 ( +10 / -8 )

If they cared about Trump tell him to plead guilty,he putting his wife business in the trial ,like he care about her

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Perverts, criminals and liars . . . Oh, my!

6 ( +9 / -3 )

he's an “admitted liar”

about this:

Cohen later admitted lying to Congress about a Moscow real estate project that he had pursued on Trump's behalf during the heat of the 2016 Republican campaign. He said he lied to be consistent with Trump's “political messaging.”

Trump's lawyers are going to have a hard time discrediting Cohen without discrediting their own client.

13 ( +16 / -3 )

Trump's lawyers are going to have a hard time discrediting Cohen without discrediting their own client.

Not at all, they have way too much dirt on this guy that would embarrass OJ, Bernie Madoff and Pinocchio, not to mention the witnesses and statements. Stormy turned out to be a monstrous disaster and Cohen is a known pathological liar, that’d been already historically established, so much so that they’re taking their not taking chances to the point where they decided not to call on Karen McDougal.

-22 ( +3 / -25 )

Trump lawyers do not have a good track record, especially this year

2 ( +7 / -5 )

they have way too much dirt on this guy that would embarrass OJ, Bernie Madoff and Pinocchio,

Remind me again, who was Cohen's employer? You know, the guy for whom the dirty deeds were done?

I guess you missed my point.

14 ( +18 / -4 )

Since the men's fallout, Cohen has emerged as a relentless and sometimes crude critic of Trump,

More figures like Cohen who are supposed to be the chumps, the fall guys for the rich and powerful need to turn feral like him.

Those LDP scapegoats cod take note.

But maybe it was because Trump was already out of power and strapped and could not provide a nice golden parachute for Cohen once he was voted out of office.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Cohen is a known pathological liar, that’d been already historically established

Yes, he did prison time for lying to protect Trump, just as the Trump Org's own CFO has (twice).

Now it is his turn to tell the truth under oath. By lying he would now risk another prison term, so he'd be better off telling the truth.

But when he pleaded guilty to committing crimes for Trump previously, was his guilty plea a lie or was that the truth? Because if it was the truth, that itself implicates Trump.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

Remind me again, who was Cohen's employer?

Rhetorical question?

You know, the guy for whom the dirty deeds were done?

Yup! Nothing illegal, so where is the crime?

https://nypost.com/2024/05/12/opinion/this-may-be-the-week-alvin-braggs-case-against-trump-falls-apart/

https://amgreatness.com/2024/05/13/the-fall-of-the-house-of-presidential-persecutions/

I guess you missed my point.

Hardly

More figures like Cohen who are supposed to be the chumps, the fall guys for the rich and powerful need to turn feral like him.

And blow up the entire case, go for it. Not sure if you know this, but most of the powerful elite worldwide have fixers, not illegal to have them and employ them.

But maybe it was because Trump was already out of power and strapped and could not provide a nice golden parachute for Cohen once he was voted out of office.

Or maybe Trump knew what a slime ball Cohen was in the end.

-21 ( +2 / -23 )

Cohen did well to make recordings of his conversations on this with Trump - it makes it clear that Trump knew what was going on.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

After Cohen's home and office were raided by the FBI in 2018, Trump showered him with affection on social media, praising him as a “fine person with a wonderful family” and predicting — incorrectly — that Cohen would not "flip."

If Jupiter was clean and running an honest business ask yourself why he would be concerned that his attorney might "flip". I run a business and there is nothing my attorney or accountant could tell a court or anyone else that would look bad.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

bass4funk

Stormy turned out to be a monstrous disaster

...for the defense. Daniels was a challenge for the defense. The defense tried to say that being an AV star is equivalent to being a liar, which didn't get a good response from the jury.

19 ( +19 / -0 )

The problem for the defense is that all of the bad things they want to say about Mr. Cohen he freely admits. He knows he was a chump to fall in with the likes of Jupiter, lied and bullied for the sob and went to jail for his loyalty to the orange colored gas giant. He went to jail in fact for the exact crimes Jupiter is now on trial for. And he can now honestly say he paid for his crimes and regrets them, and say it with sincerity as he did in the recent past in another court face off with Jupiter. He was convincing then and I suspect he is convincing now, and he knows how to hold his own under cross examination. Best yet, everything he says is corroborated by other witnesses and by a detailed paper trail. The case does not live or die on his testimony. He ties the evidence and prior testimony together however.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

There’s a storm called Donald Trump aka The Donald coming this year. If you think this trial is going to stop it, you’re wrong.

-15 ( +1 / -16 )

Wait, what lawyer violates illegally attorney client privileges and records their boss. 

FAIL. There is no attorney client privilege when the attorney client communication regards criminal activity.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

 Even CNN pundits are calling Cohen a lying sleaze.

Mr. Cohen is forthright and admits he lied. He went to jail for his lies. He is very up front about that. He is also up front that he learned a very hard lesson from that experience. Jupiter is on trial for the very same crimes Mr. Cohen went to jail for. Why should he not testify against his old boss? I know if I trusted someone and that trust led me to spend a couple of years in the slam I would want to make sure that former boss paid the same price I paid. There is nothing in the world wrong with that and I think a jury can see that.

18 ( +18 / -0 )

...for the defense. Daniels was a challenge for the defense.

Lol! So much so, that they shortened her testimony, she blew herself up, that helped the defense big time.

https://www.foxnews.com/media/cnn-legal-analyst-stunned-stormy-daniel-admitting-hates-trump-testimony-big-d-deal

The defense tried to say that being an AV star is equivalent to being a liar,

There is some truth to that, if you know the history of AV stars history and dealing with legal issues. It is not always the case, but there is definitely a history to back that up.

which didn't get a good response from the jury.

You saw them and spoke to them? Lol

-20 ( +2 / -22 )

There’s a storm called Donald Trump aka The Donald coming this year.

Sounds like a real disaster.

12 ( +14 / -2 )

Yup! Nothing illegal, so where is the crime?

Then why did Cohen go to jail for the same incident Trump is being charged here with?

It is amazing that Trump ends up surrounding himself with so many "corrupt" or "crooked" people. How does it keep happening? Is he just a bad judge of character, or is it just possible that he's a crook too?

15 ( +16 / -1 )

Micheal Cohen, an admitted felon and liar, isn’t here because the prosecution chose him. He’s here because Trump chose him. He chose him to surreptitiously pay off a porn star to cover up an illicit affair AND to hide the payments in furtherance of another crime.

Whether one likes him or not, and I do not particularly, everything Cohen is testifying to is supported by documents and/or corroborating testimony from others.

Furthermore, reasonable doubt requires at least the hint of an alternative narrative. Some other explanation for the acts that carries a scintilla of credibility. The defense has provided none.

Any (sentient) being would conclude that Trump is guilty AF because he IS guilty AF.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

FAIL. There is no attorney client privilege when the attorney client communication regards criminal activity.

Wrong as usual. The attorney client privilege isn’t the attorney’s privilege it is the client’s privilege. If Trump didn’t agree to the tape being released then the case has to be dismissed. New York law (N.Y. Penal Law,250.00(1) & 250.05) says that it is illegal to wiretap without the consent of one person involved in the conversation. This also applies to mobile phones. Again, can’t wait for this joker to be cross-examined.

-23 ( +2 / -25 )

Wrong as usual. The attorney client privilege isn’t the attorney’s privilege it is the client’s privilege.

And why isn't Trump exercising attorney client privilege? Because he has none, because he and Cohen committed a crime together. duh.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

says that it is illegal to wiretap without the consent of one person involved in the conversation. This also applies to mobile phones. Again, can’t wait for this joker to be cross-examined.

One party recording a conversation isn't a wiretap.

New York state is a one party consent state, which means any party to a phone call can legally record the phone call.

https://www.thecity.nyc/2023/08/25/how-to-legally-record-phone-call-new-york/#:~:text=New%20York%20is%20a%20%E2%80%9Cone,calls%20and%20in%2Dperson%20conversations.

17 ( +18 / -1 )

Wrong as usual. The attorney client privilege isn’t the attorney’s privilege it is the client’s privilege. If Trump didn’t agree to the tape being released then the case has to be dismissed. New York law (N.Y. Penal Law,250.00(1) & 250.05) says that it is illegal to wiretap without the consent of one person involved in the conversation. This also applies to mobile phones. Again, can’t wait for this joker to be cross-examined.

Find out what the "crime-fraud exception" to attorney client privilege is.

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/the-crime-fraud-exception-the-attorney-client-privilege.html

Here is a quote:

"If the crime-fraud exception applies, the prosecution can subpoena the attorney and force him to disclose the contents of the communication in question. But, apart from the crime-fraud exception, some situations ethically require lawyers to disclose communications. If lawyers don't, they risk disciplinary sanctions, and possibly criminal charges. Examples include the following."

14 ( +15 / -1 )

If course, the defense will try to paint Cohen as a liar. Remember, all his lies were in support of Trump.

So you conclude Cohen is a liar.

-20 ( +0 / -20 )

lol ‘wrong as usual’.

Defense that Cohen is a sleaze isn’t going to cut it. Everybody knows that. Same as discrediting Pecker because his tabloid rag is sleaze. Everybody knows that.

The issue is that king sleaze 45 hired them both to cover up his sleazy behaviour then lied about it.

19 ( +20 / -1 )

And why isn't Trump exercising attorney client privilege? Because he has none, because he and Cohen committed a crime together. duh.

I have no insight as to what the strategy is between him and his lawyers for this case.

"If the crime-fraud exception applies, the prosecution can subpoena the attorney and force him to disclose the contents of the communication in question. But, apart from the crime-fraud exception, some situations ethically require lawyers to disclose communications. If lawyers don't, they risk disciplinary sanctions, and possibly criminal charges. Examples include the following."

Cohen's recording doesn't prove anything on this case and there are several problems with it for him. Once he violated attorney/client privilege, if he is not already disbarred he should be and still may be. He most definitely violated state law. The recording itself doesn't prove anything. Maybe one could make the leap it's pertinent because it happened here but Trump himself along with many other celebrities make payments like this. They are extorted all the time. Is this all they got? They can't convict Trump of a felony because of how his accountant classified the expense.

-21 ( +2 / -23 )

Trump is a proven liar.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

Defense that Cohen is a sleaze isn’t going to cut it. Everybody knows that. Same as discrediting Pecker because his tabloid rag is sleaze. Everybody knows that.

Well, as you are not on the jury, none of your opinions matter to this trial.

Everybody knows that.

-21 ( +1 / -22 )

Trump is a proven liar.

The entire attacks on Trump is a political farce during an election year as a leading Presidential candidate is far, far worse.

-21 ( +2 / -23 )

zibala

Defense that Cohen is a sleaze isn’t going to cut it. Everybody knows that. Same as discrediting Pecker because his tabloid rag is sleaze. Everybody knows that.

> Well, as you are not on the jury, none of your opinions matter to this trial.

> Everybody knows that.

So that will also apply to you then.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

I have no insight as to what the strategy is between him and his lawyers for this case.

You don't need insight, just common sense. Why hasn't Trump exercised his attorney-client privilege? Because they were involved in a crime. A crime Cohen was jailed for, and now Trump is being tried for.

Cohen's recording doesn't prove anything on this case and there are several problems with it for him.

It most certainly does. It proves Trump knew. This wasn't Cohen acting alone. He knew who would be paid, how much, and what for.

He most definitely violated state law.

One party recording a conversation isn't a state crime. Nope.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

bass4funk

Trump is a proven liar.

> The entire attacks on Trump is a political farce during an election year as a leading Presidential candidate is far, far worse.

Trump's tens of thousands of daily lies during his term were proven.

19 ( +19 / -0 )

Desert TortoiseToday  08:02 am JST

 Even CNN pundits are calling Cohen a lying sleaze.

Mr. Cohen is forthright and admits he lied. He went to jail for his lies. He is very up front about that. He is also up front that he learned a very hard lesson from that experience. Jupiter is on trial for the very same crimes Mr. Cohen went to jail for. Why should he not testify against his old boss? I know if I trusted someone and that trust led me to spend a couple of years in the slam I would want to make sure that former boss paid the same price I paid. There is nothing in the world wrong with that and I think a jury can see that.

good post and in total agreement. forthright and spent his time after prison in mea culpa mode.

in contrast, weisselberg is back in the slammer. he is going to be paid 3 payments of $250,000 each ($750,000) by the end of the year by trump for lying.

others have received prison time for the same crimes of falsifying business and tax records. that’s what this case is about.

if trump is convicted, he deserves no less. running out the clock to the election does no good in state convictions. he can’t pardon himself.

if he does not go to prison after conviction, or is saved by the supreme court, i’ll continue to have the words engraved on the supreme court sand blasted off or covered with a tarp.

”equal justice under law” will no longer underpin american justice.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

@Z: So you conclude Cohen is a liar.

That Cohen has long shown he is a sleaze and a liar is probably true, still Cultists need to recall who Cohen's employer was at the time, and accept their cult leader, the convicted sexual predator, has been the king of sleaze and dishonesty for decades, and has surrounded himself with people like Cohen, and so many others.. The failed bible hawker has the ethics of a snake, and his equally ethics-free cult members applaud his behavior. As do anti-democracy forces around the world.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

The entire attacks on Trump is a political farce during an election year as a leading Presidential candidate is far, far worse.

Ha ha ha... Same old conspiracy theory about your orange god.

18 ( +18 / -0 )

What do most of Trump's "associates" have in common? Jail...

Paul Manafort.....jailed...

Michael Cohen....jailed...

Allen Weisselberg - jailed...

Peter Navarro....jailed....

Steve Bannon....soon to be jailed...

467 (to date) MAGA Jan 6th insurrectionists....jailed....

There would be a lot more but most have flipped and taken plea deals - Powell, Cheseboro, Ellis, et al....

And once his trials are finished, the Great Orange Apostle will join that group...

14 ( +14 / -0 )

One party recording a conversation isn't a state crime. Nope.

Yes, it has always been the case. 

Someone has been googling frantically.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

What do most of Trump's "associates" have in common? Jail...

Political hit jobs.

Paul Manafort.....jailed...

Michael Cohen....jailed...

Allen Weisselberg - jailed...

Peter Navarro....jailed....

Steve Bannon....soon to be jailed...

All failed.

467 (to date) MAGA Jan 6th insurrectionists....jailed...

Hardly, no insurrection to date.

-22 ( +0 / -22 )

Trump and Cohen are made from the same mould.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Yes, it has always been the case. All irrelevant information except for the fact that Cohen should be charged for recording without consent unless both he and Trump were both in New York at the time.

No it hasn't. This too is nonsense. All parties being recorded need not consent.

https://www.thecity.nyc/2023/08/25/how-to-legally-record-phone-call-new-york/#:~:text=New%20York%20is%20a%20%E2%80%9Cone,calls%20and%20in%2Dperson%20conversations.

https://www.romanolaw.com/can-i-record-a-conversation-in-new-york/

https://www.justia.com/50-state-surveys/recording-phone-calls-and-conversations/

Also, if the calls were illegal, why didn't his lawyers file a motion in limine? Because the actual lawyers know they weren't illegal.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/motion_in_limine#:~:text=A%20%22motion%20in%20limine%22%20is,the%20presence%20of%20the%20jury.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

And not a word of defense on your misunderstanding of the crime-fraud exception. 

I have to?

It’s a shame you never went to law school.

A lot of libs went to Law School and it didn’t help them and with Trump it seems to not be helping now. Your overall insignificant point?

You would have been an unending source of comic relief for students and professors alike

I don’t live in the fantasy world of legal hypotheticals, but if I did, if I were hypothetically a liberal, I would seek moral and emotional support.

Trump and Cohen are made from the same mould.

Cohen and the left are made of the same mould, classic.

-17 ( +1 / -18 )

What do most of Trump's "associates" have in common? Jail...

Political hit jobs.

ROFL...

Paul Manafort.....jailed...

Michael Cohen....jailed...

Allen Weisselberg - jailed...

Peter Navarro....jailed....

Steve Bannon....soon to be jailed...

All failed.

You mean ALL JAILED....

https://www.axios.com/2024/03/07/trump-associates-prison-sentence-crimes-list

467 (to date) MAGA Jan 6th insurrectionists....jailed...

Hardly, no insurrection to date.

ALL JAILED....

The far-right fails (at jail) again...

15 ( +15 / -0 )

Trump knew about the Stormy pay-off and covered up the accounting calling it legal fees.

19 ( +19 / -0 )

Believing that this case as well as the others in which Trump is named as a defendant is a "political farce" is right up there with believing in bigfoot and UFO abductions. Trump is being tried because there exists sufficient evidence to be indicted. Anybody else under the same circumstances would also be facing trial.

The only reason Trump is even runnning in 2024 is to attain Presidential Immunity. Because he knows he is guilty as sin on all his charges and that's his only Get-Out-Of-Jail card. His legal tactics reflect this agenda with never ending denials, frivolous motions, and appeals, all designed to delay delay and delay, And some Trump worshippers, like Cannon, who are so obviously unqualified to be presiding, are helping him.

If the United States, not to mention the Republican Party is ever to return a nation of law and order and the democratic ideals upon which this nation was founded, Donald Trump himself and all his pathetic supporters need to be purged from American politics.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

But prosecutors’ reliance on a witness with such a checkered past — Cohen pleaded guilty to federal charges related to the payments — also carries sizable risks with a jury...

LOL! Cohen's "checkered past" is amateur hour compared to the sleazy track record of corruption of his erstwhile scofflaw boss whose serious addiction to litigation and recorded 60,000 lies and counting since 2016 (not according to Hamas) would disqualify him in a job interview for a dog catcher.

Defense lawyers have teed up a bruising cross-examination of Cohen, telling (GASLIGHTING) jurors during opening statements that he's an “admitted liar” with an “obsession to get (EX-) President Trump.” Besides portraying him as untrustworthy, they’re also expected to cast him as vindictive, vengeful and agenda-driven.

LOL! Pure Trumpian projection by court performing hirelings with their own agenda - a mirror image of their infamous client already known as a vindictive, vengeful and agenda-driven (a wannabe dictator) to every American with a pulse (even to the MAGA crowd who are aware of but look past the deeply flawed, twisted character of their "retribution"). When Cohen is done with his testimony, you can stick a fork in 45. The big question will then be, "where will he serve next year? In jail or in the White House?"

12 ( +12 / -0 )

One tidbit the article above left out;

"On the witness stand, Cohen suggested that the claims were not a surprise. He said that Trump told him that once he announced he was a candidate in 2015, “There’s going to be a lot of women coming forward.”

https://deadline.com/2024/05/trump-hush-money-trial-michael-cohen-1235913759/

Just what Melania and HER LAWYERS wanted to hear....

ROFL..

11 ( +11 / -0 )

So that will also apply to you then.

No, because I could potentially be a juror, unlike the foreigners here who are relying on CNN international headline news.

-20 ( +0 / -20 )

Wrong as usual. The attorney client privilege isn’t the attorney’s privilege it is the client’s privilege.

Google “crime-fraud exception”, Dershowitz.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

zibala

So that will also apply to you then.

No, because I could potentially be a juror,

Not on this case, you couldn't.

unlike the foreigners here who are relying on CNN international headline news.

As are you.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

zibala

If course, the defense will try to paint Cohen as a liar. Remember, all his lies were in support of Trump.

So you conclude Cohen is a liar.

I conclude that he told lies. For Trump. He has admitted to that. I don't conclude that he habitually lies, but I do conclude that Trump is a habitual liar.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

If you believe an orange grifter from Queens is sent by god as your savior, you may be in a cult.

If you send money every month to a man you believe is a billionaire because he says he desperately needs it, you may be in a cult.

If you believe your thrice-married leader who cheated on all of his wives is a family man, you may be in cult.

If you believe your leader buried his ex-wife beside his golf course because that's what rich people do, you may be in a cult.

If you believe your orange god who has suggested overthrowing the Constitution would only be a dictator for a day, you may be in a cult.

If you believe a man who says noise from wind mill turbines causes cancer is some kind of genius, you may be in a cult.

20 ( +20 / -0 )

zibala

So that will also apply to you then.

> No, because I could potentially be a juror, unlike the foreigners here who are relying on CNN international headline news.

Only if you were to return to the US and not in this Trump case. But you could try for another one provided you have residence and registration in the city where the cases will happen.

FYI I don't watch CNN.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

zibala

So that will also apply to you then.

No, because I could potentially be a juror, unlike the foreigners here who are relying on CNN international headline news.

ROFL

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Lol

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Well there's one thing that events of this week have shown us...

A Trump-Noem ticket would have the tagline - "Vote for the Catch and Kill Twins"....

Trump catches and kills stories from porn stars and playboy bunnies that make him look bad....

Kristy Noem catches and kills puppies that growl at her...

And voting for them would catch and kill our democracy...

13 ( +14 / -1 )

No, because I could potentially be a juror,

Not in this trial.

So yeah, applies to you as well.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

This ridiculous cangaroo trial is about mislabelling an expense for the tax office. Yeah, something that no politician ever does. What an embarrassment for a previously great country.

-21 ( +0 / -21 )

No, because I could potentially be a juror

Sorry. Jury selection ended. So by your ‘logic’ your opinion on this case is irrelevant. Jog on me ole mucker.

13 ( +14 / -1 )

Only if you were to return to the US and not in this Trump case. But you could try for another one provided you have residence and registration in the city where the cases will happen.

Is that how it's done in the UK?

FYI I don't watch CNN.

ROFL!

-19 ( +0 / -19 )

This ridiculous cangaroo trial is about mislabelling an expense for the tax office. 

Mislabeling more than a dozen documents. To hide unlawful campaign contributions.

What an embarrassment for a previously great country.

Agreed. Having a disgusting crook like Trump for president is indeed embarassing.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

if trump is convicted, he deserves no less. running out the clock to the election does no good in state convictions. he can’t pardon himself.

A President can only pardon Federal crimes. Mr. Trump is being tried in a New York State Court. No President can pardon state crimes. Only the Governor of the state has that authority.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

You mean ALL JAILED....

I meant FREED

ALL JAILED....

FREED, but I get it, the Left gets a kick for a few months out of it.

The far-right fails (at jail) again...

Hardly

-14 ( +0 / -14 )

Btw Bass. Michael Cohen did not disclose those recordings you mention. They were extracted from his cell phone by the Manhattan prosecutors office after his phones and other devices were seized as evidence. Attorney client privilege does not apply in that instance.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Trump knew about the Stormy pay-off and covered up the accounting calling it legal fees.

They were legal, so where’s the crime? Quick! Look for it!

-20 ( +0 / -20 )

A Trump-Noem ticket would have the tagline - "Vote for the Catch and Kill Twins"..

Please don't be flippant about the unnecessary death of a young dog. That poor dog was a more noble and worthy creature than just about anybody that will sit in the witness box and be cross examined in this trial. I have the deepest respect and fondness for dogs.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

You mean ALL JAILED....

I meant FREED

Another failure....

ALL JAILED....

FREED, but I get it, the Left gets a kick for a few months out of it.

And your insignificant point is?

The far-right fails (at jail) again...

Hardly

We all have our opinions...

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Trump knew about the Stormy pay-off and covered up the accounting calling it legal fees.

They were legal, so where’s the crime? Quick! Look for it!

Disguising them as income rather than reimbursement, failing to declare in an effort to prevent their recognition in violation of relevant tax and electoral laws.

Do try not to be so thick (if possible). This is widely known or at least knowable if one only looks or reads.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Dershowitz says Trump has committed no crime in this case. Check the Dershowitz cast.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

Trump knew about the Stormy pay-off and covered up the accounting calling it legal fees.

They were legal, so where’s the crime? Quick! Look for it!

The payments would have been legal if Jupiter and his staff had been up front and said they were campaign expenses. But they didn't. They falsified official corporate documents to claim the payments to Michael Cohen were for legal services. They were not. They were in fact payments to keep information out of the public eye in the context of a political campaign, making them campaign expenses, not the legal expenses of their attorney. Michael Cohen compounded the fraud by claiming the payments to him as business income. All of this is illegal and fraudulent.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Trump’s a disgrace - we all know that.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Trump rally had over 100,000 people attending in Wildwood, New Jersey a day or two ago.

New Jersey! A Democrat state. 100,000 people out there for a Trump rally. What does that tell you?

-15 ( +1 / -16 )

What a grubby little man Trump is.

Those making excuses for his character tells you a lot about them.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

zibala

Only if you were to return to the US and not in this Trump case. But you could try for another one provided you have residence and registration in the city where the cases will happen.

> Is that how it's done in the UK?

> FYI I don't watch CNN.

> ROFL!

Federal jurors

To be legally qualified for jury service, an individual must: 

-be a United States citizen; 

-be at least 18 years of age; 

-have resided primarily in the judicial district for at least one year at the time of completion of the qualification questionnaire; 

-be able to adequately read, write, understand, and speak the English language; 

-have no disqualifying mental or physical condition that cannot be addressed with an accommodation; 

-not currently be subject to felony charges punishable by imprisonment for more than one year; and 

-never have been convicted of a felony (unless civil rights have been legally restored or never were lost in the jurisdiction of conviction)

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Douglas Dous was the digital forensic analyst who extracted data from two of Michael Cohen's cell phones. one of those two phones contained the recording in question.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Michael Cohen was great and kept his composure well. He was definitely a "Smoking gun" for the prosecution. There's the evidence along with the first smoking gun from Stormy Daniels.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

bass4funk

Trump knew about the Stormy pay-off and covered up the accounting calling it legal fees.

> They were legal, so where’s the crime? Quick! Look for it!

Dumb. The crimes are what he has been charged with and facing prosecution in court. You need to catch up.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Cards fanToday  08:03 am JST

Let me explain. When the time comes, in November, this political circus will be forgotten and people will choose what’s best for the country. You can say whatever you want about Donald Trump. What you can’t say is that Joe Biden is the right man to lead the nation. You can’t say that Trump isn’t a better choice. Millions of people (including you?) know this, they just don’t want to (or can’t(?)) admit it.

-12 ( +0 / -12 )

New Jersey! A Democrat state. 100,000 people out there for a Trump rally. What does that tell you?

That Trump fans are very, very gullible. 100,000 people were not at his self-esteem huddle.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

Trump rally had over 100,000 people attending in Wildwood, New Jersey a day or two ago.

The 100,000 number is what Jupiter claimed. It is an exaggeration. Video of the crowd shows large numbers of people leaving half way through his speech. The city is saying there were about 20,000 requests for tickets to the event.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

You can’t say that Trump isn’t a better choice

Why can’t you say that?

Very strange idea.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

New Jersey! A Democrat state. 100,000 people out there for a Trump rally. What does that tell you?

That he’s inflating his numbers, yet again.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Let me explain. When the time comes, in November, this political circus will be forgotten and people will choose what’s best for the country.

Yes, and what's best for this country isn't a corrupt clown like Trump.

What you can’t say is that Joe Biden is the right man to lead the nation. 

lmao oh yes, I can. Say whatever you want about Biden, but he is a far, far better president, and more decent man than Donald Trump ever will be.

You can’t say that Trump isn’t a better choice.

lol Yes I can. Trump was a clown. A know nothing moron who laid around and watched TV during "executive time" every morning.

Millions of people (including you?) know this, they just don’t want to (or can’t(?)) admit it.

Projection.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

A Trump-Noem ticket would have the tagline - "Vote for the Catch and Kill Twins"..

Please don't be flippant about the unnecessary death of a young dog. That poor dog was a more noble and worthy creature than just about anybody that will sit in the witness box and be cross examined in this trial. I have the deepest respect and fondness for dogs.

I wasn't being flippant - I was being truthful...

I also have a deep love and respect for dogs and all animals...

Noem's utter cruelty needs to be highlighted - as an example of the inhumanity of MAGA-world...

7 ( +7 / -0 )

New Jersey! A Democrat state. 100,000 people out there for a Trump rally. What does that tell you?

it tells me 45 still lies about crowd sizes and some people still believe him.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

I still can’t understand what the exact crime is.

Falsification of business records is about as close as these articles come to it, but don’t really get into specifics.

As for NDAs, those are not illegal so it seems besides the point that there was an adult film actress on the other side of payments.

So what is the crime that Trump might be convicted of here?

I wonder if American voters will be able to understand.

-13 ( +0 / -13 )

It looks just like a mob trial.

And this guy might become the next president?!

Heaven help us.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I still can’t understand what the exact crime is.

We know.

Falsification of business records is about as close as these articles come to it, but don’t really get into specifics.

Uh, they've been very specific. They've explained how the payments were made, why the payments were made in the amounts they were. They've even gone through who made the calculations and who signed the checks.

As for NDAs, those are not illegal so it seems besides the point that there was an adult film actress on the other side of payments.

NDAs aren't illegal, but there are limits on campaign finance contributions. Michael Cohen went to jail for violating this, and that is the underlying crime that Trump also commited. Why shouldn't Trump go to jail for the same crime his lawyer was part of?

I wonder if American voters will be able to understand.

I'm sure they will if they pay attention, and don't facetiously ask, "where is the crime? I don't see any crime," whilst covering their eyes.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

We know.

But do you though?

Falsification of business records is about as close as these articles come to it, but don’t really get into specifics.

Uh, they've been very specific. They've explained how the payments were made, why the payments were made in the amounts they were. They've even gone through who made the calculations and who signed the checks.

As for NDAs, those are not illegal so it seems besides the point that there was an adult film actress on the other side of payments.

NDAs aren't illegal, but there are limits on campaign finance contributions. Michael Cohen went to jail for violating this, and that is the underlying crime that Trump also commited. Why shouldn't Trump go to jail for the same crime his lawyer was part of?

I wonder if American voters will be able to understand.

I'm sure they will if they pay attention, and don't facetiously ask, "where is the crime? I don't see any crime," whilst covering their eyes.

So in other words the Dems failed again. You’d think after 8 years they would learn, but no….

-14 ( +0 / -14 )

But do you though?

But do you though, hur?

So in other words the Dems failed again. 

Yes. In other words you can take the multiple paragraphs and conclude Republicans failed again. Reee

You’d think after 8 years they would learn, but no….

Well that's what the right would think.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

I SAW the crowd on YouTube. A lotta people. Wearing red hats. In New Jersey, a blue state.

Ask yourself, how many people would Biden get for a rally in a red state? Actually, ask yourself how many would he get in a blue state? Actually, ask yourself how many would he get to get out of their chairs to greet him when he walked in a restaurant? A few, sadly.

-13 ( +0 / -13 )

I SAW the crowd on YouTube. A lotta people. Wearing red hats. In New Jersey, a blue state.

That's amazing considering there are 0 Republicans in New Jersey.:D

Ask yourself, how many people would Biden get for a rally in a red state?

I dunno, probably not a ton, but Biden wouldn't really care because he doesn't need his delicate ego stroked.

Actually, ask yourself how many would he get in a blue state? Actually, ask yourself how many would he get to get out of their chairs to greet him when he walked in a restaurant?

lol Yeah, let's put aside the fact that he got more votes than any candidate in history, and answer my irrelevant questions. :)

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Note: my previous post was a reply to Cards fan.

And sure, Trump can be a clown sometimes… but he can still do a better job.

And of course people can say whatever they want but if you look at the facts, you’ll see that the country (and the West) is a complete mess and is in desperate need of a Trump administration.

-14 ( +0 / -14 )

I SAW the crowd on YouTube

Did you count 100,000?

Trump is a pathological liar. You can’t trust anything he says.

If that isn’t clear to you by now, it never will be.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

I SAW the crowd on YouTube. A lotta people. Wearing red hats. In New Jersey, a blue state.

If only the trial were being held in NJ lol. All those Springsteen fans in red hats.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

And of course people can say whatever they want butif you look at the facts

What facts?

13 ( +13 / -0 )

And sure, Trump can be a clown sometimes… but he can still do a better job.

Not sometimes. Always. He always has been and always will be. He cannot do a better job.

In fact, he brings his own party down. Have a look at congress' "performance."

12 ( +12 / -0 )

It’s no joke, that crowd at a Trump rally, and you know it. And if this trial gets cleared away, and Trump is back on the campaign trail with rallies, people will be shaking in their boots. You know it.

-12 ( +0 / -12 )

t’s no joke, that crowd at a Trump rally, and you know it. And if this trial gets cleared away, and Trump is back on the campaign trail with rallies, people will be shaking in their boots. You know it.

MAGA-coping...and they even fail at that...

10 ( +10 / -0 )

It’s no joke, that crowd at a Trump rally, and you know it

‘Crowd’ a bit vague here. I get the feeling you are wisely backing away from the 100,000 claim. You know it.

That’s progress of a kind.

There are some who actually believe what Trump says.

Imagine that!

12 ( +12 / -0 )

So, the "star witness" against Trump is a disgraced lawyer, and a self-admitted liar.

By his own admission, he has lied in court. He has lied to the media. And he has pleaded guilty to lying to Congress.

If this is the best that these politically-motivated prosecutors can do, Trump has little if anything to worry about.

And there's as much as a 20-point shift in the Trump vs. Biden polls between May 2020 and now. Even CNN was admitting the other night that Biden's re-election is in serious doubt.

There's every good chance that Trump could be moving back into the White House in January. In fact, he probably will be -- if the election is actually a fair and square one.

You can't be very happy now if you're a Democrat.

-11 ( +0 / -11 )

But do you though, hur?

So you don’t know? Ahhh… 

Yes. In other words you can take the multiple paragraphs and conclude Republicans failed again. Reee

So why are these court cases failing demonstrably?

Well that's what the right would think.

Not think. Look at the polls.

-14 ( +0 / -14 )

‘Crowd’ a bit vague here. I get the feeling you are wisely backing away from the 100,000 claim. You know it. 

80-100K let’s just say about 90% more of what Biden could ever hope to get on any given day.

That’s progress of a kind. 

It would be.

There are some who actually believe what Trump says. 

Half the country.

Imagine that

More minorities, indeed.

-15 ( +0 / -15 )

There's every good chance that Trump could be moving back into the White House in January. In fact, he probably will be -- if the election is actually a fair and square one.

If Trump wins, it’s fair and square. If he loses, it isn’t? Is that it?

It’s worth remembering that Trump claimed the election of 2016 which he won wasn’t fair and square. He claimed enormous fraud deprived him of winning the popular vote.

It goes without saying this ridiculous trash claim was thrown out.

Again, you have to keep in mind that Trump is a pathological liar. Nothing he says can be trusted. Also, be careful of the rightwing North American podcasts and conspiracy theorists repeating his claims - they probably don’t believe it. They just scam the less able.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

That's amazing considering there are 0 Republicans in New Jersey.:D

That’s like saying there are no conservatives in OC, California. Lol

I dunno, probably not a ton, but Biden wouldn't really care because he doesn't need his delicate ego stroked.

Well, he needs something because he’s hemorrhaging Gen Z voters like a mug….

lol Yeah, let's put aside the fact that he got more votes than any candidate in history, and answer my irrelevant questions. :)

Yeah, more votes even than Obama, seriously, how gullible are people on the left??? Smh….

-15 ( +0 / -15 )

Quo Primum

So, the "star witness" against Trump is a disgraced lawyer, and a self-admitted liar.

At least he has admitted his lies. Try getting Trump to do that...

You can't be very happy now if you're a Democrat.

Trump doing well in poll yet losing 20% of vote in primary. Now that's a good news story.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

bass4funk

lol Yeah, let's put aside the fact that he got more votes than any candidate in history, and answer my irrelevant questions. :)

Yeah, more votes even than Obama, seriously, how gullible are people on the left??? Smh….

Has nothing to do with gullibility. It is an incontrovertible fact that Biden got more votes than Obama.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

If Trump wins, it’s fair and square. If he loses, it isn’t? Is that it?

If the Dems would play fair and square and just allow the voter to make the decision then by all means fair would be fair. But after Nadler got caught on a hot mic saying, “we can’t trust the voters to vote accordingly in the next election.” Who the hell is he to determine what and how the voters should vote.

It’s worth remembering that Trump claimed the election of 2016 which he won wasn’t fair and square.

Yes

He claimed enormous fraud deprived him of winning the popular vote. 

It goes without saying this ridiculous trash claim was thrown out. 

That’s what the left and establishment claimed, four years later we know a lot of things were not what the swamp tried to force feed us tried to make us believe.

Again, you have to keep in mind that Trump is a pathological liar.

Not nearly as pathological as this administration.

Nothing he says can be trusted.

Then people wouldn’t be voting for him the way they are if that were true.

Also, be careful of the rightwing North American podcasts and conspiracy theorists repeating his claims - they probably don’t believe it. They just scam the less able.

Not sure what they say in Europe, but in the U.S. we can say at least on the right we allow dissent, not so much on the left. The msm is the scam.

-16 ( +0 / -16 )

Has nothing to do with gullibility. It is an incontrovertible fact that Biden got more votes than Obama.

Ok, you’re across the pond, if you want to believe that, go ahead. Lol

-18 ( +0 / -18 )

There's every good chance that Trump could be moving back into the White House in January. In fact, he probably will be -- if the election is actually a fair and square one.

Oh boy, here we go....

You can't be very happy now if you're a Democrat.

Stormy says Trump said he "reminded him of his daughter" before their fling...

Trump says fictional movie cannibal Hannibal Lecter is "great and missed"...

His No. 1 VP pick says she shot her dog at a gravel pit for growling at her...

Nikki Haley, who dropped out of the race three months ago, gets 22% of the vote in this week's Indiana primary...

MTG and 11 other Repubs mutiny against him and vote to vacate his guy Johnson...who is saved by the Libs...

Melania remains AWOL from his trial...

I guess you could say someone is "unhappy"....

12 ( +12 / -0 )

bass4funk

Has nothing to do with gullibility. It is an incontrovertible fact that Biden got more votes than Obama.

Ok, you’re across the pond, if you want to believe that, go ahead. Lol

Are you saying that when you live more than across the pond?

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Trump is a pathological liar. You can’t trust anything he says.

If that isn’t clear to you by now, it never will be.

Yes. They believe every thing he says is gospel. He's their god, their saviour. Nothing he says is a lie.

It's the same as all cults.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Are you saying that when you live more than across the pond?

As an American who was born and grew up half of his life in the states, I am.

-14 ( +2 / -16 )

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