Michael Cohen's Office Searched by Feds

Trump Attorney Michael Cohen was the subject of an FBI raid at his offices today. They took material related to Story Daniels, and the Russia investigation.

Mueller referred the raid to prosecutors in the Southern District of New York, which implies to me that this is more about money laundering than Russia, although it may involve Trump.

Cohen's lawyer said he and Cohen had already turned over Russia-related stuff and the warrant isn't necessary. Trump called it unfair.,

The F.B.I. also seized emails, tax documents and business records, the person said. The seized records include communications between Mr. Trump and Mr. Cohen, which would likely require a special team of agents to review because conversations between lawyers and clients are protected from scrutiny in most instances.

Sounds like Mueller is going the extrea mile by appointing a Taint Team to review the seized material, so Cohen has less to cry foul about in terms of breach of attorney client privilege. [More...] [More...]

What might they be looking for besides Daniels, who really is just a distraction in my view? From an earlier Washington Post article:
....negotiations Cohen undertook during the campaign to help the Trump Organization build a tower in Moscow. Cohen brought Trump a letter of intent in October 2015 from a Russian developer to build a Moscow project. Later, he sent an email to Russian President Vladi≠mir Putinís chief spokesman seeking help to advance the stalled project. He said he did not recall receiving a response.

Another area that Muellerís team has explored is a Russia-friendly peace proposal for Ukraine that was delivered to Cohen by a Ukrainian lawmaker one week after Trump took office, the people said.

This will be fun if they bring former informant Felix Sater into it:

Cohen has said he worked on the deal with Felix Sater, a real estate developer who helped build a number of Trump-branded properties, including Trump SoHo in New York, and had tried to help Trump build in Moscow a decade earlier.

The most recent effort to launch a Trump-branded development in Moscow began in the fall of 2015, at the same time Trump was competing for the GOP presidential nomination.

Cohen has known Sater since they were children. Trump likes to say he doesn't remember Sater, but the now defunct Rocky Mountain News did a feature on Sater and Trump traveling to Denver to buy a tall building -- they failed. Then they tried for another and didn't get that one either. If Felix Sater is new to you, here's an recap on him. More on their failed Moscow venture here. The New York Times has some emails between Sater and Cohen. As for Trump not recognizing Stater, Bloomberg reports:

Trump had joined Sater for ribbon-cuttings on their projects, traveled on business with him, and later hired him as a consultant carrying Trump Organization business cards. Sater has also claimed that he was so cozy with the Trump family that he arranged for Ivanka to sit at Putin's desk in the Kremlin. And, as we now know from the new emails disclosed yesterday, Trump took briefings on a project Sater and Cohen were trying to engineer in Moscow in 2015 and 2016. (Sater and Cohen, who have been friends since they were teenagers, also reportedly teamed up earlier this year to try to sell the White House on a peace plan for Ukraine.)
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    Trump said to be (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 04:25:21 PM EST
    Glued to the coverage of this.

    Because, really, what else does he have to do?

    I would say this might be bad news for Syria.

    I hope he is enjoying it (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:09:31 PM EST
    As much as I am.  Lots of fear about what now happens to Rosenstein and/or the FBI director.  

    The consensus seems to be this is a very big deal.  Getting Rosenstein and a federal judge to sign off of a raid not just of "a lawyers" office but the office of the personal attorney of the POTUS.  Which never happened before not even to Nixon.

    It's said this is definitely not just about a possible campaign finance violation but something or things much more serious.

    Trump attorney Cohen is being investigated for possible bank fraud, wire fraud, campaign finance violations, according to a person familiar with the case


    I (none / 0) (#8)
    by FlJoe on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:19:51 PM EST
    bet Felix Sater fingered him.

    Said Trump has known about this (none / 0) (#9)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:24:12 PM EST
    For a while which might explain the "ask Michael" comment.

    I just saw Trump raving.  Blah blah no collusion no collusion blah blah Hillary democrats blah blah, and then importantly, blah blah Syria Syria Syria.

    Like I said duck and cover it distract and divert time.


    Trump looked (none / 0) (#18)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 07:02:24 PM EST
    to be unraveling, even for him.

    Trump's body language - plus the weird (none / 0) (#27)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 08:43:44 PM EST
    sniffing thing he does - tells me he's feeling very vulnerable, and probably with good reason.

    Here he thought getting rid of Comey would solve his problems and put an end to the investigations.  Then Sessions betrays him by somehow not recusing before he was even nominated.  Then he thinks Rosenstein is on his side, but Rosenstein signs off on the FISA warrant, and, he signs off on this raid of Michael Cohen's home, hotel room and office.

    One resignation after another, everyone down the line living the high life on the taxpayers' dime - these people are up to their hips in the muck.

    Who does he see as being on his side, other than the folks at Trump TV?

    Everyone is turning against him! Sarah Sanders can't tell the lies fast enough, no one will eat lunch with Kelly, what's Pence up to?  How many hours of TV does Trump need to stay coherent?

    I don't see this as being confined to all-things-Stormy; Cohen's had his hands in a lot of Ukrainian interests and connections - so I think there may be more here than meets the eye.


    Measuring the drapes in the Oval office?!! :-) (none / 0) (#30)
    by vml68 on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 09:34:57 PM EST
    what's Pence up to?

    Telling the movers to be on standby?

    Practicing his swearing in?


    CNN (none / 0) (#2)
    by FlJoe on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:06:54 PM EST
    is egging him on.

    Who (none / 0) (#4)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:10:12 PM EST

    Yeah (none / 0) (#7)
    by FlJoe on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:14:49 PM EST
    to fire the lot of them,  but tRump just railed against them but declined to fire anyone, even when asked directly.

    To provide a bit of relevant contrast, ... (none / 0) (#88)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 05:02:58 PM EST
    ... it was 20 years ago today that the Good Friday Agreement (aka the Belfast Accords), a bilateral international peace agreement between the Irish and British governments and a similar multi-party agreement between the major political factions in Northern Ireland's volatile politics, was signed by designated representatives of the various parties. Seven weeks later on May 22, 1998, voters in both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland overwhelmingly approved and ratified the agreement by referendum.

    This comprehensive peace agreement, which was brokered by former Sen. George Mitchell in his capacity as President Bill Clinton's personal emissary, effectively ended the 30 years of bloody civil / sectarian strife in Northern Ireland known as "The Troubles," brought about the voluntary disarmament of both the Irish Republican Army and its equally militant counterpart the Ulster Volunteer Force, and paved the way for a new era of better relations and understanding between the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom.

    I only mention this because the pursuit of peace is normally something that good presidents want to do.



    Turns out (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:52:53 AM EST
    You can't use your attorney to facilitate or cover up a crime. Who knew

    Stormy is apparently (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:11:08 PM EST
    cooperating with Mueller is being reported.

    On a criminal defense site? (2.00 / 1) (#44)
    by thomas rogan on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:06:02 AM EST
    A lawyer has an unpopular client.  The government finds some sort of alleged crime which is not very large in the grand scheme of things (such as question of 130000 bank fraud) and uses it to get a warrant to get all of the lawyer's records and threaten the lawyer with indictments.  Instead of waiting until the client's case or even indictment is settled the government preemptively goes after the lawyer.  No one here at a site originally devoted to representing Oklahoma City bombers and the like finds this the least bit disturbing.  Oh well.  

    Your concern is duly noted. (5.00 / 3) (#45)
    by vml68 on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:13:47 AM EST

    Cohen (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by FlJoe on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:25:22 AM EST
    was involved in way more than just legal representation of clients. It's ludicrous to think that anybody with a law license is immune from any and all law enforcement scrutiny.

    Would help to get your facts straight. (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Anne on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:37:29 AM EST
    I know that's a reach for you, but try.

    Try to understand how high up the chain this all had to go for approval, and ask yourself if this would have been done just for some payoff to an adult film actress.

    You don't get warrants like this because you want to fish around and put on a show.

    I don't think you understand or realize just how deeply Michael Cohen is into Trump's business, or appreciate Cohen's Ukrainian connections, or the deals and fixes he was reportedly involved in.


    Cohen is not and never has been (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by Peter G on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 10:23:26 AM EST
    Trump's criminal defense lawyer. The execution of a warrant on a criminal defense lawyer's office during a criminal investigation of the client for conduct in which the lawyer is not alleged to be otherwise involved would be a matter of grave concern here. But that is not the present situation.

    What is the difference (none / 0) (#59)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 12:19:06 PM EST
    between attorney/client privilege in a criminal case and the privilege in a civil case; or even a client seeking counsel in general.

    No difference (5.00 / 2) (#115)
    by MKS on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:17:34 PM EST
    But no privilege applies to actions and communications as a business agent, as opposed to a lawyer.  And the crime/fraud exception could apply.

    I think it's highly unlikely that ... (none / 0) (#69)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 03:25:09 PM EST
    thomas rogan: "A lawyer has an unpopular client.  The government finds some sort of alleged crime which is not very large in the grand scheme of things (such as question of 130000 bank fraud) and uses it to get a warrant to get all of the lawyer's records and threaten the lawyer with indictments. Instead of waiting until the client's case or even indictment is settled the government preemptively goes after the lawyer. No one here at a site originally devoted to representing Oklahoma City bombers and the like finds this the least bit disturbing. Oh well."

    ... yesterday's FBI raid on Michael Cohen's home and offices has much if anything to do with Robert Mueller's current investigation into the Trump-Russia scandal, which is why he handed it off to Geoffrey Berman, who's the acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

    By and large, judges tend to take a rather dim view of any prosecutorial attempts to accomplish an end run around the long-established rights of both clients and their attorneys to enjoy privileged communications with one another.

    So, for a federal judge to sign off on an FBI warrant to search an attorney's domestic and professional abodes, prosecutors would first have to make a compelling case to that judge that the attorney in question, in this case Michael Cohen, has likely committed or is likely presently engaged in serious criminal conduct.

    I would further venture that the judge would probably set that bar of evidence even higher for prosecutors with regard to Cohen, given his longtime status as President Trump's personal attorney and advisor. So, whatever it was that Mueller uncovered about Cohen and handed off to Berman, a Trump appointee, it appears to have been serious enough to have prompted Berman's office to act swiftly and decisively.

    Therefore, and with the admission that I'm likewise engaged in personal speculation, I believe that yesterday's events probably have much more to do with Michael Cohen's own personal conduct and suspect dealings outside of the Trumpian realm, than with any matters regarding his personal and professional relationship with Donald Trump himself.



    That's not quite what happened (none / 0) (#136)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 01:29:34 PM EST
    and defense lawyers are very well aware of the crime fraud exception to the attorney client privilege. If charges are brought, no one here will presume him guilty. He's considered innocent until and unless a guilty plea is entered or jury verdict of guilt is returned.

    I think the govt is looking for the source of the funds he used to make settlement payments, if not from Trump, and it appears so far it was not, then from who? If he used his line of credit on his home, has he paid it back? How?

    How many affairs Trump had or settled is not a federal crime. So they are looking for something else...given that special approval from higher ups at DOJ is needed for seeking warrants on lawyer's offices, they aren't just pulling rabbits out of a hat. Something is there.


    It has also been speculated that this (none / 0) (#139)
    by Anne on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 02:32:31 PM EST
    raid arose from the Mueller team discovering evidence of additional crimes not strictly within the purview of the special counsel.

    Josh Marshall:

    We've been telling you for years that Michael Cohen's business history couldn't survive first contact with serious investigative scrutiny. He's been tied his entire life to emigres from Russia and Ukraine; he's been their business partners, and they've been the source of rivers of money from that part of the world which Cohen has used to make himself a very wealthy man. A number of them have reputed ties to organized crime. Taxis, real estate, casino cruise boats. These are all businesses that require large amounts of cash to operate. They're all good ways to channel cash into the United States. With Cohen taxis have always been the biggest red flag in our reporting.

    Some additional reporting here.


    Guides for Payroll (1.00 / 1) (#142)
    by jolzkie28 on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 11:16:53 PM EST
    Small Business Payroll Software
    Payroll Management
    Payroll Solutions

    Site violator (none / 0) (#145)
    by Peter G on Thu Apr 12, 2018 at 08:00:32 AM EST
    Guides for Payroll (1.00 / 1) (#143)
    by jolzkie28 on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 11:18:08 PM EST
    Site Violator - Spam (none / 0) (#144)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 11:22:02 PM EST
    A failed attempt, but spam nonetheless.

    With this level of (none / 0) (#5)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:12:21 PM EST
    activity, it is hard to believe that the Mueller Investigation will not yield bad results for Trump. Either in the form of major indictments or a recommendation for Impeachment.

    They just said (none / 0) (#6)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:13:54 PM EST
    His door was kicked in.

    Da um


    Not supposed to happen (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by Peter G on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 06:06:49 PM EST
    unless there is objective reason to believe that someone is in the act of -- or likely to respond by -- destroying evidence.

    Cohen has said (none / 0) (#13)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 06:12:05 PM EST
    He would take a bullet for Trump.

    Well, a bullet can be removed.  20 years to life might be a whole other thing.

    To your comment, of course he would destroy evidence.  He has called himself the POTUSs Ray Donavon.

    Ray Donavon would destroy evidence and much much more.


    I can't believe he (none / 0) (#16)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 06:47:43 PM EST
    was so stupid as to basically admit campaign finance fraud in public. These people have been getting away with stuff for way too long.

    The federal Guidelines-suggested sentence (none / 0) (#29)
    by Peter G on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 09:32:25 PM EST
    for a $130,000 bank fraud is actually more like two years than 20, Howdy.

    Cohen (none / 0) (#31)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 09:57:49 PM EST
    Has been doing Trumps dirty work for decades.  I was not assuming one charge of bank fraud and that isn't what I expect.

    And I do not think (none / 0) (#32)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 10:00:49 PM EST
    That would have gotten his door kicked down.

    Do you?


    FWIW (none / 0) (#40)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:30:40 AM EST
    Frank Figliuzzi was just asked about the potential jail time. He said if there was multiple violations of the things being discussed, decades.

    And he added if they find evidence of the threats he is famous for something called the Hobbs act could come into play.


    He just cancelled (none / 0) (#42)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:48:31 AM EST
    His trip to South America. CNN says they have leaks he has never been this distraught.

    Eat as bag of d$cks you worthless blankety blank blank blank!


    At this point (none / 0) (#46)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:23:11 AM EST
    He is the boiler in the Overlook Hotel.

    The other movie reference would be (none / 0) (#49)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:52:24 AM EST

    Important point I had not heard (none / 0) (#10)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 05:49:03 PM EST
    In addition to being Trumps personal attorney Cohen is also the Deputy National Finance Chairman of the Republican National Committee.

    Search warrants executed not only (5.00 / 6) (#12)
    by Peter G on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 06:10:53 PM EST
    at Cohen's office, but also at his home. This is serious.

    I went to bed very early (none / 0) (#33)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 11:22:55 PM EST
    Some tweeters now tweeting about a hotel room a few blocks away that he also kept, supposedly they spent hours there.

    From one of my favorite "twitterers"... (5.00 / 3) (#63)
    by vml68 on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 12:52:49 PM EST
    Peter G: "Search warrants executed not only at Cohen's office, but also at his home. This is serious."

    But so many of the babbling right-wing cable news commentariat are treating this as some sort of frivolous exercise on the part of federal investigators, and that's really starting to annoy me.

    So, if you would, please speculate in your hypothetical capacity as an unnamed defendant's / target's legal counsel, and explain to us as best you can what sort of conduct you might have to be engaged in as said legal counsel in order to get yourself personally cited in a U.S. Attorney's legal crosshairs, and be potentially subjected to an FBI raid on your personal and professional premises. (And Jeralyn, please feel free to chime in as well, if so inclined.)

    I figured that in order for us to discuss this matter with some degree of knowledge, it's probably best that we hear the perspective of attorneys like you and Jeralyn, whose ethical compasses are so firmly fixed that neither of you would be likely to aggressively skirt the frontier boundaries of right and wrong, the way Michael Cohen appears to have done in his own capacity as an attorney.

    And as always, thank you for your invaluable explanations and clarifications about standing law and legal procedure.



    The examples I am familiar with (5.00 / 2) (#86)
    by Peter G on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:51:28 PM EST
    (all based on true stories of lawyers I have known who ended up in federal prison or narrowly avoided that outcome) involve giving the wrong answer to suggestions from clients along the lines of:
      "Would you take this pile of cash, which you know or have good reason to believe constitutes the proceeds of criminal activity, and park it in your escrow account for a while for me?"  
      "Would you draft an affidavit, which you know to be false, for this 'witness' to sign under oath on my behalf?"
      "Would you put these funds in your escrow account for me and use them to pay the fees for other lawyers that I will choose to represent my co-defendants?"
      "I just sold some drugs so I could pay your fee. Here is the money I made."
      "I am going to send one of the witness against me into your office, for you to advise them of their Fifth Amendment right not to testify."
      "I need a letter advising me that destroying these emails would not be a crime so long as I don't actually know I am under investigation."
      "I need a letter advising me that operating a gambling business in [X] way does not violate any federal law. My gambling business will need a general counsel to provide advice on an ongoing basis, by the way, and we could hire you on a monthly retainer for that."
      "Please visit [name of former confederate] in prison and tell him that all is forgiven."
      "Do you offer a discount if I pay in cash?"

    How legal would (none / 0) (#87)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:59:17 PM EST
    A slush fund be for Cohen to use for the purposes of paying off women or whoever.

    That's a question Trump has avoided


    Thank you, Peter. (none / 0) (#110)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:45:26 PM EST
    In my own professional life, I've had the opportunity to work with quite a few attorneys, and I daresay the vast majority would've tossed out on their ears anyone who had invited them to take such a generously expansive view on ethical propriety -- or, in a few instances you cited, simply take the envelope stuffed with cash. But it's apparent from the examples you cited that some people obviously find it hard to resist such temptations.



    My guess is (none / 0) (#14)
    by ragebot on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 06:31:35 PM EST
    Cohen is gonna get charged with bank fraud based on his not disclosing the reason for a $US130,000 loan secured by his home.  Bet he did not tell the bank it was for hush money for Stormy.  Probably told the bank the loan was for home improvement or something similar.  Maybe some FEC charges as well.

    Talking heads are saying Rod Rosenstein signed off on this.  Not sure how easy it is to get bank loan records, but if Rosenstein saw the loan form and it said anything but hush money it looks like a clear cut case to me.  I do have to wonder just how many other loan were granted where the money was not used for what was claimed on the application.

    If I was a betting man I would say the first to go is Sessions, then Rosenstein, and Mueller would be at the back of the bus.

    The problem (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 06:50:58 PM EST
    is if you believe the Head Nazi Bannon there were hundreds of Stormy Daniels.

    How about this (none / 0) (#15)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 06:43:42 PM EST
    The whole home loan thing was BS.  In his statement on the subject Cohen used lots of "lawyer talk".

    He said he "facilitated" the payment.  Which could mean anything.

    He sai that Trump never reimbursed him.  He did not say someone else, like a Russian oligarch, did not reimburse him.

    From what I hear there is a lot more to this than a simple campaign finance violation.

    Plus, do you seriously, actually believe Cohen took a fraudulent loan on his own house to do this?  Really?


    Not sure what (none / 0) (#21)
    by ragebot on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 07:42:09 PM EST
    I believe at this point.  I do know if you tell a bank you want to borrow money for home improvement and use it as hush money that is bank fraud.  If the hush money is used to help a pol in an election there may well be an FEC violation.  The first is an easy case to win; but if the money is repaid to the bank I doubt there would be much punishment.  FEC violations are almost always a joke with a slap on the wrist and nothing much more.

    Not saying there could not be more to it.  Just pointing out that this would justify charges of bank fraud and FEC violations.  


    He may have (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 08:00:34 PM EST
    Gotten the money fraudulently but I think they might be more interested in who reimbursed him.

    Plus, he is deeply involved in finance for the Republican national committee which could explain a lot about why republicans have been working as hard as they can to make this go away.

    I think the funniest part of the rant today was about how all these "democrats" are out to get him with this witch hunt.

    Well, Mueller is a republican.  Rosenstein is a republican.  The attorney for the southern district of New York is not only a republican and partner in Rudys law firm, he was hand picked and personally interviewed for the job by Donald J Trump.

    Some times in witch hunt you find witches.


    Stormy Daniels is appearing (none / 0) (#19)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 07:09:32 PM EST
    more and more like the upright citizen here.

    Not upright in the (none / 0) (#22)
    by ragebot on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 07:46:36 PM EST
    Penthouse pix she is posing for as well as answering questions about her affair with Trump that Anderson Cooper could not ask on TV.

    Perhaps (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 07:53:37 PM EST
    But a cording to polls she is more trusted and more believable than he is across the political spectrum.

    Which is remarkable in its self.


    And your point is - what, exactly? (5.00 / 3) (#35)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 05:36:39 AM EST
    Seriously, do you think you can slutshame a p0rn star? Unlike any number of people in Trump's orbit, Stormy Daniels has never tried to hide how she actually makes her living. And she's certainly not someone who's currently suspected of money laundering, or colluding with a foreign adversary to subvert our democratic institutions.

    If the issue here is honesty, integrity and public trust, I'll take Stormy Daniels over the sanctimonious and hypocritical right-wing Republicans who are currently running D.C., any day of the week.



    My point is (none / 0) (#60)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 12:22:55 PM EST
    Donald needs to get a sense of humor.  Jokes about ladies of the night being upright or not have been around and laughed at forever.  I realize you are humor impaired but you seem to take the bait every time and make a serious response to an obvious joke.

    When was the last time (none / 0) (#68)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 02:26:49 PM EST
    ...Donald told a joke? It would have to involve cruelty of the "pulling a chair out from under an old lady" variety for him to be amused. This is not a guy with a sense of humor. Self deprecation?  


    Who is his "best friend," someone who has his back and whose back Mr. Trump protects?

    No one. Tells you a lot about the guy.


    I think he meant DFH "Donald" (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by Chuck0 on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 03:31:05 PM EST
    What ChuckO said. (none / 0) (#82)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:23:52 PM EST
    I think you've confused your Donalds. ragebot's comment was directed at me, not Der Trumpenführer.

    And to answer ragebot, no, I don't have much of a sense of humor when it comes to the denigration of working women, regardless of whatever capacity they choose to earn a living.

    Because however one might feel personally about p0rn stars' chosen profession, they are also human beings who are someone else's children, grandchildren, spouses / significant others, siblings, parents, nieces, nephews and cousins. They have their own personal aspirations, hopes and dreams, same as the rest of us.

    Stephanie Clifford presently lives in Dallas, TX, has been engaged in a long-term relationship and has a 7-year-old daughter. Her insatiable p0rn star persona "Stormy Daniels" is purely for entertainment purposes only. I mean, for Heaven's sake, nobody lives like that for real!

    I think it would surprise most people to learn that Ms. Clifford is also an accomplished and nationally ranked equestrian. Horses are her real passion outside of her family; she owns seven of them. She broke her back in a riding mishap while entered in a show-jumping event last year, and has since had to take time off from competition in order to recover from her injury.

    So, Stephanie Clifford and her fellow "adult entertainment specialists" don't deserve to have their basic humanity stripped from them (pun intended) by those people who have a very disturbing tendency to publicly flaunt their own warped sense of moral superiority before the rest of us.

    As the late Nobel laureate and humanitarian Jane Addams once counseled us, "The essence of immorality is the tendency to make an exception of myself."



    Any turth to rumors that the (none / 0) (#102)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:28:46 PM EST
    IRS is investigating Stormy for not reporting the $US130,000 on her taxes.

    Probably nothing (5.00 / 1) (#106)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:58:53 PM EST
    there as you seem to get your information from places like Fox News. Stormy has a very sharp lawyer who would have solved that issue before she went public.

    I fully support her right be a porn (none / 0) (#105)
    by McBain on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:58:33 PM EST
    actress if that's what she still wants to do.  Based on what I know of the industry (there are some good documentaries on adult performers) I'd say she's made some really bad decisions in her life.  I'm not sure if this lawsuit attempt is another one.



    There are also a lot of people ... (5.00 / 1) (#111)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:56:07 PM EST
    ... who AREN'T doing p0rn who've made bad decisions in their lives. I daresay each and every one of us here have likely made some questionable decision in the past, whether in haste or deliberately, which we later came to regret or rue. Adult entertainers are no different. Our own respective fallibility of personal judgment is but one of the characteristics which renders us all too human.

    Wait. So you're judging HER ... (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by Yman on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:11:23 PM EST
    ... decision-making based not on actual decisions she's made, but on what you know about the industry she's in?

    Hey - can we apply the same standard to Trump and reality TV actors?  Or real estate developers?



    Say what? That seems like a pretty big (5.00 / 1) (#134)
    by Anne on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 11:17:20 AM EST
    leap to me - deciding that Daniels has made bad decisions because of how some other people in her industry fared?  Isn't that a bit like saying that a car salesman you don't know must be shady because you saw a documentary about the auto industry?    

    I guess it doesn't work for the conclusion you want to reach because maybe, when all is said and done, the decisions she's made weren't so bad after all.  What do you have after that?  Not much.

    Hey, it isn't a life that would work for me, but I've been lucky to have had better choices available to me - isn't that sometimes what  life's direction turns on - the choices you have?

    There's a Rolling Stone article you should read, which might give you something to think about.  Or not.  I'm not thinking your opinion is likely to change - maybe next time, you could just cut to the chase and tell us that you think people who have sex in front of cameras are icky.


    Icky, No (none / 0) (#138)
    by McBain on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 02:14:42 PM EST
    Insecure and likely abused, yes.  That's my opinion of women in that industry.

    As for Daniels, I think she's capitalizing on an opportunity most aging performers like her don't get. I don't really have a problem with that but I don't think it will good thing for her long term self esteem.

    If anyone want's to respond, let's take this discussion to the new open thread.


    Your "opinion" of women ... (5.00 / 3) (#141)
    by Yman on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 05:16:49 PM EST
    ... is laughable and based on false stereotypes, although not nearly as laughable as your faux concern for her self esteem.  The logical fallacies you use to smear Daniels simply by virtue of the industry she works in is just sophomoric.

    Instead of relying on some TV movies, perhaps you should read a few studies:

    Porn Stars As `Damaged Goods' With Sexual Abuse As A Child Is Inaccurate Stereotype, Study Says.

    The stereotype that female porn stars are "damaged goods" who have experienced sexual abuse as a child is inaccurate, according to a new study.

    In fact, porn actresses have higher levels of self-esteem, positive feelings, social support, sexual satisfaction and spirituality, according to the study "Pornography Actresses: An Assessment of the Damaged Goods Hypothesis."

    The Porn Myth: Uncovering the Truth about Sex Stars

    The results of the research failed to support many common stereotypes. Most notably, the porn actresses were no more likely to report having been sexually abused as children than national averages or than a sample of demographically matched women Griffith and his colleagues recruited at a university and at an airport.


    Porn actresses were also more likely to report higher self-esteem than average women, another unsurprising finding, Griffith said.

    "They do have to be comfortable with themselves in order to engage in intercourse in front of other people on camera," he said.

    It's her life, not yours (none / 0) (#112)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:06:43 PM EST
    I fully support her right be a porn actress if that's what she still wants to do.

    It's my understanding that she has retired from that.

    I'd say she's made some really bad decisions in her life.  I'm not sure if this lawsuit attempt is another one.

    Do you have enough self-awareness to understand how patronizing and insulting that comment is?

    Asking for a friend.

    Who is a woman.


    Tell your friend to get over it (1.00 / 3) (#132)
    by McBain on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 09:43:31 AM EST
    and watch documentaries like After P0rn Ends to see how the mistakes catch up with adult performers.  

    The only reason people are saying relatively good things about Daniels is because she's doing something that might hurt Trump.


    Hard to argue with success (5.00 / 1) (#133)
    by Repack Rider on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 10:42:26 AM EST
    watch documentaries like After P0rn Ends to see how the mistakes catch up with adult performers.  

    I'm not a consumer of p0rn, I don't care for it, and I understand that it is exploitive and that people have been harmed.

    Applying a general truth to a specific situation is my objection to your insulting comment. We are not talking p0rn actresses in general, we are talking about one specific woman, who has shown no signs of having her life destroyed by her past.

    You would like her to be a psychological mess, because that would fit your view of her profession, but clearly she isn't. Every indication from the few public appearances I have seen is that she is smart, tough, and unafraid. There is no doubt she is a more worthy member of society than the president.

    So you have to suggest that the decisions that brought her to the apparently happy place she is in, got the right results for the wrong reasons.

    Her success bothers you, even though it has zero effect on your life.



    Perhaps YOU should ... (none / 0) (#140)
    by Yman on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 05:03:02 PM EST
    ... "get over it", or - better yet- get you information from actual studies rather than movies.

    The only reason YOU'RE attacking Daniels is because she's exposing Trump as the fraud, liar and hypocrite we already knew - not to mention his defenders.


    Please elaborate. (none / 0) (#135)
    by Chuck0 on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 01:09:33 PM EST
    Exactly WHAT are the bad decisions? P0rn? Having a child? Making money to pay her bills? Horses?

    Finally. (none / 0) (#20)
    by Chuck0 on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 07:12:53 PM EST
    The deep state rises. Good job. What took so long. 😈

    if the cops show kick in my door, (none / 0) (#25)
    by Chuck0 on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 08:39:43 PM EST
    shoot my dog and wave a search warrant in my face for a bag of weed, that's law enforcement. If cops show up at Michael Cohen's with a search warrant, it's "broke in" "an attack on the country" and a disgrace. Makes you go hmmmmmmmm.

    The happiest man in DC tonight? (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 08:40:59 PM EST
    Scott Pruitt

    Scott who? (none / 0) (#28)
    by Chuck0 on Mon Apr 09, 2018 at 08:50:30 PM EST
    The second happiest (none / 0) (#52)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 10:37:36 AM EST
    Might be Mark Zukerberg

    I guess (none / 0) (#34)
    by itscookin on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 05:11:16 AM EST
    attorney/client privilege is out the window for you? Love Trump or hate Trump I would have expected more concern here.

    I guess you didn't see and hear what (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by Anne on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 05:40:00 AM EST
    probably the rest of us did: that they had a special team - they call it the "taint team" - which goes in ahead of those actually assigned to the investigation, to examine the materials to make sure no one from the investigating team is seeing anything privileged.

    In a nutshell

    The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) has developed a procedure to protect unrelated and privileged information from being reviewed after electronic records are obtained. The DOJ appoints prosecutors and/or agents who are not otherwise assigned to the case under investigation and directs them to review all the electronic records first and identify the portions of those records that their colleagues who are handling the case should not see. These groups of reviewing prosecutors and agents are referred to as "taint teams" because their purpose is to shield the government from a defense motion to suppress electronic record evidence based on an argument that the prosecution and investigating team was "tainted" by viewing electronic records it had no right to see. See United States Department of Justice, Criminal Division, Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section, Searching and Seizing Computers and Obtaining Electronic Evidence in Criminal Investigations, § 2(B)(7) (July 2002).  

    Is it perfect?  Of course not - and you can bet arguments will be made of prejudice and violation of privilege - but I suspect the SDNY and the FBI had their ducks in a row for some time before the raid actually occurred.

    And I hate to tell you this, but if a client is engaging an attorney for the purpose of either committing a crime or otherwise being involved in a crime, it isn't privileged.  I suspect Michael Cohen - and Trump - may have some exposure there.

    You know, it wouldn't kill you to do some research  before you blurt out stuff that makes you look, well, not good.


    Also (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:47:41 AM EST
    There are questions about how much of the work Cohen did for Trump even fit into the attorney client frame.  Cohen called himself Trumps personal "fixer".  He was a bagman.  Trump always had other lawyers to deal with business stuff.   Cohen handled the "personal" stuff.  Like threatening people Trump wanted to walk over.

    I was (none / 0) (#41)
    by FlJoe on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:01:24 AM EST
    thinking that also, how much actual nuts and bolts legal work did he actually provide?

    I have often seen Cohen named as a business partner of tRumps as well as his attorney. tRumps 300 pound Samoan attorney in this pit of fear and loathing this country has fallen into.


    As was noted by Jeralyn and Peter, ... (none / 0) (#37)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 05:51:38 AM EST
    ... this was not a casual undertaking by investigators. Rather, prosecutors have to clear a high bar of evidence and probable cause that a crime was either ongoing or being committed, before a judge would have signed off on any warrant authorizing a raid on an attorney's office and home -- never mind that this this particular lawyer, Michael Cohen, is the longtime consigliere for the president. There is no attorney / client privilege if the former's in criminal cahoots with the latter as co-conspirators.

    Crime/Fraud exception (none / 0) (#61)
    by MKS on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 12:29:02 PM EST
    Business Agent (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by MKS on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 03:28:03 PM EST
    communications are not protected.  Not every communication between an attorney and his client are protected.  Often, in practice, that is the how it works.

    But, when a judge wants to really drill down and analytically sift through this, only the communications designed to obtain legal advice are protected.  Not the conversations and emails, etc. designed to carry out a business objective.  

    Cohen, as fixer, may not have been providing all that much legal advice.  


    Giuliani on the raid (none / 0) (#39)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:18:41 AM EST
    is this surprising?  Yes...it is.
    Is it extraordinary?  No.  This is the way prosecutors get information -- sometimes to convict and prosecute, sometimes to exculpate.

    I would call that a crack in the dam.

    Giuliani (none / 0) (#67)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 02:21:46 PM EST
    has been rumored to be in big trouble himself. So I wonder if he really was surprised or that is just the line he is taking right now.

    Avenatti, Stormy's attorney (none / 0) (#50)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 10:06:39 AM EST
    Just tweeted

    Due to the FBI raids of Mr. Cohen's office/home and a subsequent request we received this morning to delay the release of the forensic sketch of the thug that threatened Ms. Clifford to "leave Trump alone", we will not be releasing the sketch or reward details today. Timing TBD.

    Would love to know (none / 0) (#58)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 12:14:31 PM EST
    just who requested the delay.  Not really buying Mueller/DOJ/US Attorney sent such a request.  Was there any clue who requested the delay.

    It makes no diffeence (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 02:17:18 PM EST
    ...who "requested" it.  Mr. Avanetti is in charge of it, and can do with it what he wishes.

    Thanks (none / 0) (#99)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:06:52 PM EST
    for clearing that up.

    CNN (none / 0) (#53)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 11:04:45 AM EST
    Michael Cohen and TAXI MEDALLIONS  

    Here we go!

    Link? n/t (none / 0) (#54)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 11:27:57 AM EST
    Here (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by FlJoe on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 11:30:04 AM EST
    In August, the New York Daily News reported that Cohen owed nearly $40,000 in unpaid taxi taxes. The tax warrants filed with the state's Department of Taxation appear to remain active.

    As someone (none / 0) (#65)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 02:20:38 PM EST
    who used to work with commercial insurance in NY the taxi medallion thing is a BFD.

    They were once a much (none / 0) (#75)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:09:45 PM EST
    Bigger thing.  Before Uber and the others.

    True. (none / 0) (#78)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:11:40 PM EST
    It turns out that at one time (none / 0) (#101)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:25:21 PM EST
    ...a taxi medallion was worth a cool mil.  Uber and Lyft have eroded that badly, and medallions have lost more than half their value.

    Cohen bought them as an investment, and he's losing a lot of money because of that.


    Questions for (none / 0) (#57)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 12:11:42 PM EST
    Peter G

    Any idea how the magistrate judge who OKed the warrants is assigned, can you forum shop for them.  Bonus question how soon will he be IDed.

    Do you think Trump will file papers, as the aggrieved party, to suppress anything taken from Cohen?

    Early reports were the US Attorney would have a dirty team vet what stuff would go to the clean team.  There are obviously other options, including a real judge, as opposed to a magistrate judge, a special master, or outside lawyer doing the vetting.  How common is it to set up an in house clean and dirty team as opposed to outsourcing it.

    Any idea how long the prelims will go on before the US Attorney can use any of this stuff to file charges.

    Finally the big question, how easy/hard is it to share stuff with Mueller.  I would guess it would open up a whole new set of motions to suppress by Trumps lawyers.

    You forgot the /s (none / 0) (#66)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 02:21:37 PM EST
    motions to suppress by Trumps lawyers

    They would have to call Paul Manafort's lawyers to find out what that even is.

    Most of Trump's legal attention is focused on Ms. Clifford. Trump's legal "team" for the Mueller investigation is third year law students and the Public Defender.


    Once again (none / 0) (#74)
    by Peter G on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:06:01 PM EST
    you insult the Public Defender without just cause.

    One more question for (none / 0) (#96)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:31:19 PM EST
    Geoffrey Berman recuses (none / 0) (#62)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 12:36:52 PM EST
    ABC News has learned that Geoffrey Berman, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, is recused from the Michael Cohen investigation.

    The link does not say if it was self imposed, but does say Rosenstein approved it.

    Maggie Habermann tweeted (none / 0) (#73)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:01:59 PM EST
    That Dershowitz has been at the White House for half the day.

    Quick (none / 0) (#76)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:10:24 PM EST
    Launch the drones

    He's going to do it (none / 0) (#90)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 05:58:36 PM EST
    He's going to fire someone :)

    He might (none / 0) (#91)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:03:08 PM EST
    I don't think it will end well for him.  But he might.

    He is clearly unraveling.

    Listening to some of the republicans it almost feels like that's what they are waiting for.  They need him to do something so blatantly crazy before they can say or do anything publicly.

    But many are warning him not to.  Not just the usual suspects and not just the ones retiring.


    And (none / 0) (#92)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:06:58 PM EST
    The one thing Mueller has been making clear lately is that firing him, even if he got away with it, would not change a thing.  
    He made it clear in that last filing career prosecutors are completely capable of continuing and the thing yesterday Trump can't even pardon.

    It's easy to see why he thinks the walls are closing in on him.  They are.


    If Pruitt replaces Sessions (none / 0) (#94)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:20:07 PM EST
    Pruitt can end the investigation. It is false confidence to believe Trump can do nothing.

    Dersh up there making the case for (none / 0) (#81)
    by vicndabx on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:22:05 PM EST
    I gave up on "Dersh" (5.00 / 2) (#116)
    by MKS on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:23:01 PM EST
    when he publicly supported torture.

    Not the advocate of the defenseless and little guy, not anymore.


    Maybe Dersh has (none / 0) (#84)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:34:38 PM EST
    A secret plan to goad Trump into self destructing.

    If he is so pro Trump why doesn't he sign on the defense team.

    Then again, maybe he has.  I would say the likelihood of him being the "people in the legal community" Sanders quoted as saying Trump can fire Mueller is about 100%


    Hasn't he said as much on TV (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by vicndabx on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:43:34 PM EST
    re: Comey, Rosenstien, Mueller, et al?

    saying Trump can fire Mueller

    "As head of the Executive Branch, blah blah blah....."

    Dersh has been pro- whatever aligns with my politics regardless of any other factors for some time now IMO.

    I'm sure he is/was a great law professor, but, seems to me, that wine done turned.


    So Huckelberry Sanders (none / 0) (#79)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:14:14 PM EST
    Floated the balloon of firing Mueller today.

    It seems impossible to believe he would do that but .......

    I think he might just blow like the boiler in the Overlook.

    Does this have any connection with Alan (none / 0) (#80)
    by vml68 on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:20:37 PM EST
    Dershowitz spending time at the WH? Is this where Tr*mp got the idea that he has the power to fire Mueller?

    Inquiring minds would like to know!

    So Huckelberry Sanders Floated the balloon of firing Mueller today

    Who the puck really knows (none / 0) (#83)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 04:30:24 PM EST
    But if you have time for a chuckle read Rick Wilson in the DailyBeast

    If Cohen had a lump of coal in his a$$ the moment those search warrants arrived, he could have popped out a diamond.

    From CNN (none / 0) (#95)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:27:24 PM EST
    In his first comments since the FBI raid on his home and office, Michael Cohen said the FBI agents "were extremely professional, courteous and respectful."

    The link goes on to say he thanked the FBI agents when they left for their good behavior.


    Also (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:38:31 PM EST
    I would say unlike his godfather he is at least smart enough to not pi$$ off the people giving you a cavity search.

    Selective reading (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by Yman on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:29:07 PM EST
    The very next line in the article:

    Asked if he was worried, Cohen said; "I would be lying to you if I told that I am not. Do I need this in my life? No. Do I want to be involved in this? No."

    The raid was "upsetting to say the least," he added


    That doesn't make the (none / 0) (#97)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:35:16 PM EST
    Comment you replied to untrue.  But it is interesting.

    Kicking in your door might not get the same response from me.


    Maybe (none / 0) (#89)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 05:11:22 PM EST
    Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) is pressing for the Senate Judiciary Committee to take up his legislation aimed at insulating Mueller from any attempted firing. Tillis is in discussions with Sens. Chris Coons (D-Del.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) about merging two separate Mueller protection bills and then persuading Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) to pass them.

    Sorry (none / 0) (#93)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 06:09:48 PM EST
    Yeah (none / 0) (#103)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:52:34 PM EST
    well, if Mueller gets axed I fully expect the GOP to do absolutely nothing.

    I have decided this is going to have to be handled at the polls in November. I wrote one of my senators and told him if you think we are going to forget what you have done in 2020 you are fooling yourself.


    Well (none / 0) (#107)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:10:19 PM EST
    I think you are dead wrong.  If he fired Mueller a lot would happen.

    But he will not do that.  It will not be that black and white.

    If he makes a move it will be against Rosenstein or Sessions or both.  

    He could put some one in who could try to severely limit or slowly kill the investigation while allowing it to continue.  Would republicans do anything in that case.  It's easy to believe they would not.

    But here's the thing.  If that's is what happens we will not only take the house we will take the Senate too.


    Ousting Rosenstein or firing Mueller (5.00 / 2) (#119)
    by Peter G on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 10:03:39 PM EST
    it's all the same: an endeavor to obstruct justice, if the motive is to end an investigation that appears to threaten the *President himself or his cronies. A felony, and an impeachable offense. It would be the end -- or the beginning of the end -- for him, as it was for Nixon.

    I (none / 0) (#121)
    by FlJoe on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 05:51:09 AM EST
    wish I shared your optimism. The consensus seems to be that Mueller can't/won't indict a sitting President. That leaves it up to the house to impeach which seems extremely unlikely until next year at the earliest and even then conviction in the Senate is iffy.

    Even if it is really the beginning of the end, it will a long and ugly demise, with much of the pain borne my the American people and institutions.


    That's basically what I have (none / 0) (#122)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 06:59:28 AM EST
    Been saying.  But unless Mueller indicts him it's on congress.  We know congress.

    My point was if he gave them the fig leaf of allowing the investigation continue "limited to collusion" or some nonsense I am not completely confident the republicans would act.

    But I THINK they might.


    I wonder if the GOP plan isn't to (none / 0) (#124)
    by Anne on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 07:24:59 AM EST
    take the path of least resistance, just keep biding their time as this thing plays out, and at the point where it looks like the American people are going to demand that they impeach Trump and/or the majority shifts over to the Dems, there will be a come-to-Jesus meeting with Trump and he will be told he needs to resign for the good of the country.  The GOP will get President Pence out of it, and Pence will pardon Trump.

    And life - or something like it - will go on - or so they will think.

    As much as I would like to see Trump get his just deserts, I'm not sure we can stand much more of this.  I have to think the universe has hardly even begun to exact its punishment, so I'm sure there will be plenty of entertainment in the pipeline.


    I said yesterday (none / 0) (#125)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 07:37:52 AM EST
    And my favorite former FBI agent, Clint Watts, just agreed with me that what the republicans "might" be doing "might" be smart, at least politically.

    In spite of the now bipartisan calls for legislAtion there seems to be real questions about the constitutionality of the proposed laws.  The republicans have warned Trump.  But if they pass something that will go straight into court it could play right into Trumps "they are all out to get me" meme.  OTOH if they wait for him to act they can move more surely.  

    I agree they would love to have Pence.

    There is a new Q poll that says 67% want Muller to be left alone.  Including a majority of republicans.  13% want him fired.  Those are pretty clear numbers.

    Clint said, and I agree, they are waiting for Trump to step I go the trap.


    Paul Ryan just quit Anne (none / 0) (#126)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 07:42:19 AM EST
    They are running away!!!

    I'm so phucking mad. They run everything, but they can't govern.

    If he didn't do this so he can only focus on taking Trump down without distraction, he is an incredible coward who has abandoned his country to a danger he created.

    John Galt better find a really good gulch to hide in!


    Yes, a more cowardly group (5.00 / 1) (#127)
    by Anne on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 08:28:52 AM EST
    would be hard to find, and Ryan is among the worst.  Maybe Ryan thinks that if there's no chance he can slash and burn the social safety net, what's the point in hanging around?

    I won't be sorry to see the last of  him, and I'm pretty sure he has no future in politics - probably slated to slide into some cushy consulting job with lots of perks and lots fewer headaches.

    Good riddance - and I'd be happy if he'd take many more of his colleagues with him.


    Dennis Ross FL (none / 0) (#131)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 09:42:14 AM EST
    Just announced he's not running

    Which by the way (none / 0) (#108)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 08:25:07 PM EST
    Is why I do not think they will allow it.  They know that too and the only loyalty they have is to their own re-election.
    And, if he tried it I do not think I would be Pruitt.  But I hope it is because I think that might be the only thing he could do that would guarantee it would blow up in his face.

    I would have thought (none / 0) (#114)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:16:05 PM EST
    that their own worries about reelection would have done something to them by now. I think they honestly are more afraid of Trump voters than anything else. Their mindset seems to be if I make it through the primary I will win.

    However in some ways you could argue that firing Mueller would do nothing because at this point things are probably too far along. With Cohen's indictment coming out of SDNY there's evidence that Mueller is spreading everything around to other districts and states and then there's Schneiderman who can move if Mueller is fired. Perhaps someone has made it plain to Trump that he actually could be worse off if he fired Mueller because the State of NY can issue indictments and there's no way he's going to have anybody in NY watching his back like he does in DC.


    I think so far (none / 0) (#118)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:25:41 PM EST
    They think Trump will help them get re-elected.  They are absolutely afraid of his voters.  I think if he actually tried to rescind that justice dept reg that covers Mueller, which is really the only way he could do it, I think they would quickly decide the cons were swamping the pros.

    That's why I think Dooshiwitz was advising him to go the Sessions Rosenstein route.   This is just my opinion which along with 3 bucks will get you a coffee.

    And I agree with you that it's way beyond the point firing a few people are going to stop it.


    Well, I can (none / 0) (#120)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 05:35:58 AM EST
    see those thoughts playing out in my district a 70/30 GOP district. However it does not explain David Perdue since Hillary lost GA by 5 points. Maybe he's waiting to see what happens in the governor's race since all the GOP candidates sound just like Trump.

    Paul Ryan just announced he's not running (none / 0) (#123)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 07:24:38 AM EST
    My God these people are completely without courage!

    Maybe he will now grow a pair. (none / 0) (#128)
    by Chuck0 on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 09:23:34 AM EST
    And confront cadet Bone Spurs. But I doubt it. The GOP cowardly ways and sc*umbaggery just goes on and on and on and on.

    nah, Ryan's remaining days as SotH (none / 0) (#129)
    by leap on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 09:31:17 AM EST
    will be spent securing his post-retirement sinecure by doing the bidding of his Koch-brothers sponsors as much as possible.

    I'm with leap (none / 0) (#130)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 09:37:41 AM EST
    Paul Ryan wants a big check now.

    Today's Republican are the laziest no moral compass cowards to ever take up congressional space. They are shamelessly corrupt and completely self serving.

    The rule of law burns and they're looking for marshmallows


    There's a new open thread (none / 0) (#137)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Apr 11, 2018 at 01:32:19 PM EST
    for the Ryan and other news.

    NYT reporting the raid was about (none / 0) (#100)
    by ragebot on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:21:20 PM EST
    payments to two women who claim they had affairs with Mr. Trump, and information related to the publisher of The National Enquirer's role in silencing one of the women

    The article went on to say

    The F.B.I. also searched for records related to Mr. Cohen's taxicab business,

    Cohen has said the $US130,000 loan on his home was a line of credit which seems to reduce the bank fraud charges to really technical stuff.

    If this is all there is justifying the warrant it seems really thin to me.  No question about these being crimes; but crimes that often go unnoticed.

    I know Edwards was charged with something similar, but not convicted.  Maybe the wild card is the taxi stuff but that seems like something from out where the busses don't run.

    Money laundering (5.00 / 1) (#104)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 07:57:39 PM EST
    It is suspected that Cohen has been laundering money for Trump for quite a while. There also is his part of delivering the message from Putin regarding the Ukraine. Then there's the deal he was brokering in Russia for Trump. It's way more than Stormy and Karen McDougal.

    Get Cohen (none / 0) (#117)
    by MKS on Tue Apr 10, 2018 at 09:24:52 PM EST
    on Stormy subterfuge; get him to sing on Russia?