Breaking on a late Friday evening, the Wall Street Journal is reporting – according to NBC News – that Trump personal lawyer Michael Cohen accessed $774,000 of Trump Campaign funds throughout the 2016 campaign. The underlying assumption is that Trump granted Cohen access to that money in order to “fix” issues that would come up. Given it is the Trump campaign, and given it is Michael Cohen we are talking about, it’s highly unlikely that Cohen would be “fixing” problems such as the lack of decent polling data in Ohio. No, in this instance, the presumption is that Cohen “fixed” campaign issues like; “what if a porn star [that I will tell people I didn’t have sex with] comes out on the eve of the election and says that I [Trump] offered her money after sex, sex that occurred (or not) back when Melania and I [Trump] were newly married and Barron was in diapers?” I guess “issues” of that type were common enough that a slush fund of three quarters of a million dollars needed be on hand. Dear god in heaven what the fk else got paid off? Time will tell, surely.
Meanwhile, the Times reports something we’ve assumed all along but could not have proven, that Trump knew of the payment to Daniels, at least months ahead of the day on Air Force One when Trump denied to the nation that he knew anything about the matter. To this day, Trump still denies that he had a sexual encounter with Daniels. To which sane people reply; “if you are paying people whom you have not had sex with, to stay quiet about the fact that we did not have sex, please tell me where to sign up and I will send you a mailing address …and a W-2, because I do try to keep my finances legal.” In all seriousness, the Trump lie aboard AF1 about his knowledge regarding the payment will come back to haunt Trump like few other issues. The reason? Because Trump supporters will cover just about anything Trump does, or says. They already went to bat for him when he said he knew nothing about it. But, on this, there’s videotape feed of Trump lying to his supporters, playing over and over. It is embarrassing, and no one enjoys feeling embarrassed, just ask ultimate Trump supporter Sean Hannity, who seemed genuinely shocked to hear the details related by Rudy Guiliani. Even Trump supporters cannot defend a proven lie, and once there’s a chink in the armor …this is a bigger deal than most think. Trump can only survive so long as Republicans on Capitol Hill are terrified of his voters.
To round out the late night/ early morning headlines, according to the Washington Post, Trump aides now fear that Rudy Guiliani, having been named “part” of Trump’s legal team (and a licensed attorney), has waived his right to invoke attorney–client privilege and refuse to talk about the matter in a formal proceeding such as a deposition. A reminder to all the non-lawyers – all privileges, all of them, can be “waived.” One way to “waive” attorney-client privilege is to start talking to third parties, any third party, even a spouse, about the matter, and “poof.” It’s gone. Now that Guiliani has gone “rogue” and took it upon himself to attempt to “explain away” Trump’s “Storm” clouds, it is a good bet that any discussions between Guiliani and Trump about the matter are no longer privileged. Thus, if someone like, say, Michael Avenatti, asks Trump about how it came to be that Guiliani admitted that Trump was a party to the pay-off, and knew about the matter all along, Trump must answer the question. Unless he can invoke another privilege, such as one under …dunno, just shootin’ in the dark here, but say the 5th Amendment.
Three stories, three new fires that Trump’s team is busy pouring grease all over. All this late-breaking stuff and we do not even have time to really ponder whether Sarah Huckabee-Sanders lost all remaining shreds of credibility today when asked about whether she had been “kept in the dark about the Daniels’ deal.” Instead of answering the “yes or no” question, Huckabee-Sanders held firm to her noble non-answer; that she gave the best information she had at the time.
“The best information had at the time” might go down as the phrase that best describes this White House’s relationship with “facts.”