Donate

Michael Cohen, you handsome devil! COME ON DOWN! Let's lawsplain that Information and Plea Agreement you entered into yesterday. And since it's Friday (and we are FRIED-AY, ba-dum-TSSS), let's do it Top 5 Style.

1. Says Who?

Back in August, Michael Cohen walked into the federal courthouse in Manhattan and pleaded guilty to various tax and campaign finance violations. But he wasn't yet a cooperating witness with a deal. He still had to spend a lot of quality time spilling his guts to Robert Mueller and a whole bevy of law men from various federal agencies.

Do you know how hard it is to coordinate schedules for Stan and Angela from FINCEN, Steve, Mike and Susan from the IRS, five faceless dudes from CIA, a minyan from SDNY who take off half of September for some kind of holiday, and FIFTEEN ANGRY DEMOCRATS from the Special Counsel's Office?


But they finally managed to get it done. And after a one million hour proffer session, Michael Cohen managed to tell the government about almost all the crimes in Trumpland. ALLEGEDLY. So now he's pleading to a Level 4 Offense, and the government will agree to recommend a two-level sentencing reduction, which puts him at 0-6 months.

Assuming Cohen plays it straight, unlike Paul Manafort, it's all upside for him. He was already going to jail for years for crimes he pleaded to in August, and having Robert Mueller tell the judge what a very good boy he's been might shave some time off what he already owes the government.

2. But Isn't Cohen a Total Liar?

Indeed, he is. Readers of this here mommyblog spent two whole years watching him lie his ass off about the various misadventures of Donald Trump's wandering wiener, his hinky finances, and all the Russians in Trumpland. If Michael Cohen told you today was Friday (TG!), you'd seek a second opinion. So why is he getting such a sweetheart deal from Robert Mueller?

Well, the guy does tend to keep receipts. He sends incriminating text messages to guys like Felix Sater talking about getting Putin on board with building the Trump Tower Moscow, as published in Buzzfeed.

He sends text messages to "opposing" counsel coordinating appearances of porn stars on Fox "News" to help a presidential campaign.

He tape records HIS OWN BOSS talking about using corporate money to buy damaging stories from the National Enquirer in violation of campaign finance law. If Mueller intends to use the testimony of a guy who's pleading guilty to lying to Congress, you can be damn sure he's got the receipts.

Case in point, this description of Cohen's phone call with Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov's assistant.

Let's take a wild shot in the dark that Mueller's not relying on Michael Cohen's memory alone when he puts in a court filing, "Assistant 1 asked detailed questions and took notes, stating that she would follow up with others in Russia."

3. But What About Meatball?

Matthew Whitaker may be a hacky idiot who sells Big Dick Johns and flogs inventor scams, but he's not CRAZY. And he was a federal prosecutor, so, unlike the Trumpland incompetents, he's unlikely to stumble into a major crime by accident -- like, say massive violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, for example. We're betting his first day at DOJ went something like this.

media1.giphy.com

The DOJ has steadfastly refused to answer questions about the internal ethics opinion on Whitaker's recusal, causing prominent lawyers to assume that he was already sticking a shiv in the Mueller investigation.

But what if, faced with a sea of dumpster fires, Meatball did some back of the napkin calculation and worked out that a future Democratic AG/Congress/Senate might take a harsh view of a man who barged in and put his meat paws all over the biggest criminal investigation in 50 years. A future Attorney General Newsom might even characterize it as OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE. Perhaps Whitaker looked at the DOJ's skeptical evaluation of his ethical position and decided to keep his head down and wait out the storm, as Jeff Sessions had done before him. Because if Fox News doesn't tell the Couch Potato in Chief that his Acting AG recused, did it ever really happen?

All that is speculation, of course. But this is not.

That's Michael Cohen expressly agreeing to let all further proceedings against him take place in the Sovereign Southern District of New York. Does Meatball want to travel to New York in the winter? NAH.

4. Donald Trump, Call Your Lawyer! (Not Rudy, A Real One.)

You, too, DJ! Rudy Giuliani shared his #Thoughts on Michael Cohen's reliability with NPR.

"Michael Cohen is a liar," Giuliani said. "It's no surprise that Cohen lied to Congress. He's a proven liar who is doing everything he can to get out of a long-term prison sentence for serious crimes of bank and tax fraud that had nothing to do with the Trump Organization."

Interestingly, Giuliani told the New York Times that Trump's recent answers to Mueller's questions lined up perfectly with THAT LIAR Michael Cohen's.

"The president said there was a proposal, it was discussed with Cohen, there was a nonbinding letter of intent and it didn't go beyond that," said Rudolph W. Giuliani, one of Mr. Trump's lawyers, who with others negotiated the president's responses to Mr. Mueller's questions for nearly a year. He said prosecutors did not raise certain details that Mr. Cohen now says he misled Congress about — including how long the hotel project stayed alive — and that the president did not volunteer those details.

Assume for the moment that the president was actually truthful in his answers to Mueller -- it could happen. But do his answers line up with those of his dipshit son, who testified before Congress that the Trump Tower Moscow project "died of deal fatigue" in 2015? Because if they don't, someone is in deep shit right now.

5. So, Now What?

Now we wait. But Mueller's got Cohen's cooperation, he's got whatever information he gleaned from Manafort before their deal went south, he's got Flynn, he's got Sater (who is clearly talking), he's got Trump Org CFO Allen Weisselberg, he's got David Pecker, he's got Dylan Howard, he's got Maria Butina, he's got RIck Gates, and he's got every piece of digital data these idiots ever touched. AND THAT'S JUST THE PART THE PUBLIC KNOWS ABOUT. If we had to guess, we'd say Mueller's got Don Jr. by the short and curlies, too, but only time will tell.

This was a good week. Wonkette, out.

[Cohen Information / Cohen Plea Agreement / NPR / New York Times]

Follow your FDF on Twitter!

Shit's hitting the fan, and Your Wonkette is ON IT! Please click here to fund us. You know you wanna!

How often would you like to donate?

Select an amount (USD)

Five Dollar Feminist

Your FDF lives in Baltimore under an assumed identity as an upstanding member of the PTA. Shhh, don't tell anyone she makes swears on the internet!

$
Donate with CC
Yeah, that's definitely a repurposed animatronic Hillary (YouTube)

A whole bunch of protests were held today against the fake "president's" fake "emergency" declaration, with people turning out in cold crappy weather to call attention to the general nastiness of the guy who claims he absolutely had to do that declaration that wasn't necessary. Organizers with MoveOn.org said over 250 rallies were planned nationwide. So far, the national State Of Emergency doesn't appear to have caused any of the rallies to be cancelled, despite the very real possibility that terrified Honduran refugees fleeing violence in Central America might suddenly show up and ask for asylum.

Are there still actions taking place in your area? Check at MoveOn!

Keep reading... Show less
$
Donate with CC

WHAT. IS. PAUL. MANAFORT. HIDING?

Before Manafort pleaded guilty and signed up as a cooperating witness who didn't actually cooperate, we wrote this:

We have always kind of figured that Paul Manafort is the one who knows the whole Trump-Russia conspiracy story. He was the first big fish indicted, and they hit him for A LOT. Also note that just about all the other prosecutions that have come from the Mueller investigation so far have been farmed out by Mueller to different jurisdictions. Manafort, on the other hand, Mueller has kept squarely in his office. There has to be a reason for that.

Perhaps it's because, as this Josh Marshall podcast suggests, Paul Manafort, a foreign agent who worked for Oleg Deripaska, AKA Putin's favorite oligarch, and who got sideways financially with Deripaska, was literally sent into the Trump campaign by the Kremlin to do its dirty work. Perhaps the Steele Dossier is right when it suggests that the entire Trump-Russia election-stealing conspiracy was run by Manafort on the Trump side, and that others like (perhaps!) Michael Cohen only had to take over when Manafort's shit started to stink and the news media started reporting on his weird-ass Russian connections in the summer of 2016.

If it's possible, we are beginning to suspect it may be even worse than that.

On Friday, special counsel Robert Mueller issued his sentencing recommendations for Manafort, after DC district court Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled conclusively that the shady motherfucker very intentionally lied and blew up his cooperating agreement. Because Manafort defaulted, Mueller is no longer bound to recommend that Manafort's sentence be reduced, and is free to throw the book right at Manafort's face. HARD.

And that is what Mueller did! To be clear, the sentencing memo is harsh.

Keep reading... Show less
$
Donate with CC
Donate

How often would you like to donate?

Select an amount (USD)

Newsletter

©2018 by Commie Girl Industries, Inc