Oh boy, longtime Trump lawyer/fixer Michael Cohen must be feeling the heat, because he is now making up stories about how he paid porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 out of his own lunch money, and for no reason in particular, and that he didn’t tell Donald Trump about it. Or maybe he’s telling the truth, and he’s just an idiot! SAYS WHO?
Cohen told these words to Maggie Haberman at the New York Times, and she copied them down verbatim:
“Neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Ms. Clifford, and neither reimbursed me for the payment, either directly or indirectly,” Mr. Cohen said in a statement to The New York Times. “The payment to Ms. Clifford was lawful, and was not a campaign contribution or a campaign expenditure by anyone.”
He declined to answer several follow-up questions, including whether Mr. Trump had been aware that Mr. Cohen made the payment, why he made the payment or whether he had made similar payments to other people over the years.
Isn’t that just what best pals always do, when you’re running for president and all of a sudden a porn lady is about to go public about your affair with her, so your BFF gives her $130,000 out of his piggy bank for reasons completely unrelated to that? That’s definitely what always happens, especially when your BFF is ALSO YOUR LAWYER.
Can’t imagine there are any ethical problems with that, things the New York state bar might be interested in hearing about.
This is all totally normal.
Except for remember how Trump has been denying he even had an affair with Stormy Daniels? And how Cohen has ignored questions about a payout to Daniels (whose real name is Stephanie Clifford) ever since the Wall Street Journal broke the story? Oh well, let’s not worry about details too much.
Here, have a full statement:
What does the last part of that statement even mean? Is he really trying to fall on his sword here to protect Trump, the crime family boss? Is that what is going on? (Josh Marshall at TPM has a theory and it is that yes, that’s exactly what is going on, because that is Cohen’s role in the crime family.)
OK, let’s review:
Cohen paid Stormy Daniels $130,000 of his own money. Why? Oh, no reason in particular! Which piggy bank did he use? Just this very private LLC he set up in Delaware. The Trump campaign didn’t know about it, ALLEGEDLY. The Trump Organization didn’t know about it, ALLEGEDLY. Neither the campaign nor the company reimbursed him, ALLEGEDLY. What about Donald Trump, the person himself? Did he know about it or reimburse Cohen? Well Cohen certainly isn’t denying it in that statement!
This is all definitely true and we for sure have the full story in front of us right now, about a really nice guy named Michael Cohen, who happens to be a lawyer, secretly paying a porn star $130,000 out of the goodness of his heart for no reason in particular out of an LLC in Delaware, a month before HIS OWN CLIENT, who allegedly had an affair with the porn star the year his young son was born, was barely elected president.
Kevin Drum at Mother Jones has a theory about how the money laundering went:
Cohen paid Stormy; Kushner paid Cohen; Ivanka paid Kushner; Don Jr. paid Ivanka; and Don Jr.’s end-of-year bonus from The Trump Organization was $130,000 higher than last year thanks to his outstanding performance. You don’t believe me? Fine. Come up with a better theory.
That doesn’t even have any Russians in it, so it can’t be right, KEVIN. Insert nine Sergeis, three Vlads and a Boris in the middle, though, and we think Drum’s got it.
Stay tuned for a Wonkette lawsplainer, from our resident lawyer Five Dollar Feminist, on all the world of legal shit Cohen might be in now. Wheeeeeee!
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