Ale Profile picture
Jun 21, 2018 24 tweets 5 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
1. BIG news here that I missed earlier (Sorry). Means that FBI is looking into Cohen's payments violating campaign laws and/or other federal laws. That includes NE paying McDougal to catch her story and suppress it (or "catch and kill").
2. Very relevant here is the fact that McDougal said in her lawsuit against the publisher of the NE in March, that "she realized after the fact the payment was intended to muzzle her during the campaign."
3. Since McDougal has sued the NE publisher and she is the person directly involved in affair and payments, it's reasonable to think prosecutors will interview her re: her deal with Keith Davidson, who also represented Stormy Daniels initially.
4. We all know Davidson wasn't actually representing his clients' interests but colluding with Cohen, per emails that @MichaelAvenatti disclosed, and those weren't even the most damaging ones. Davidson is easily facing disbarment.
5. Bc Davidson was directly involved in the payment to Karen McDougal as well, it's easy to see how prosecutors will ask her how things went, and piece this together with testimony from Stormy Daniels.
6. Essential point here is timing: "Two months after American Media’s payment to McDougal, Cohen wired $130,000 to adult-film star Stephanie Clifford so she would keep silent about an alleged sexual encounter with Trump, also in 2006. The payment occurred 12 days before election"
7. TWELVE days before the Presidential election,Cohen was paying Stormy Daniels to keep silent, as we all know. We also all know there are a BUNCH of other payments Cohen received that are suspicious and how @MichaelAvenatti has docs proving Cohen/Davidson discussed TIMING.
8. Timing as in the payment HAD to happen before the election (bc it needed to happen timely to keep Stormy silent). As there are emails showing this, Cohen can't claim the payment was NOT campaign-related. So there's a whole host of problems there.
9. One problem is for example bank fraud, as Cohen said he used his home equity line to pay Stormy Daniels. And er no, that doesn't include "oh hey I need hush money to pay off Trump's mistress!". Cohen lied to get that money, if that's what happened.
10. Cohen may also have lied about using his home equity line to pay Stormy. For all we know he may have a "mistress fund" that Trump set up to pay off women. Hence why SDNY is investigating all of this and now subpoenaed the National Enquirer publisher, too.
11. The other obvious problem is campaign finance violations. It's clear the payments were made with the specific purpose to hide scandals for Trump before the election, so they were an "in kind" campaign contribution, but were not declared as such. Which is a violation.
12. WSJ already reported that the Cohen search warrant authorized seizure of payment docs for Stormy & McDougal, but WSJ says now it also contained "a broad provision asking for materials related to any effort or payment to deal with sources of negative publicity,"
13. That would obviously include the payment National Enquirer made to McDougal, hence why around Cohen raid time, SDNY subpoenaed American Media for those payment records. WSJ says they're in the process of producing the docs, per person familiar with the matter.
14. "Phone records show that Messrs. Cohen and Pecker were in frequent contact around the time of the negotiations with Ms. McDougal, another person familiar with the matter said." Which we've heard before but it being documented by phone records makes a big difference.
15. "The Justice Department’s guidelines for federal prosecutors describe subpoenas sent to news organizations as “extraordinary measures, not standard investigatory practices.” Well, I wouldn't call the National Enquirer a NEWS organization. It's a gossip rag. But OK.
16.The problem here is corporations like American Media are barred from making contributions to candidates. And their payment to Mcdougal WOULD be exactly that. So them conspiring with Cohen to deliver it could mean criminal charges for both them and Cohen.
17. "In such a case, prosecutors would have to prove Mr. Cohen coordinated with American Media to provide Mr. Trump something of value for the purpose of influencing the election". Proving coordination is the key and it's usually difficult. EXCEPT there are emails and phone calls
18. Cohen's habit to record his phone calls and the fact SNDY confiscated Cohen's phones and computers could prove VERY useful in this case, as it could show direct evidence of him coordinating with Pecker to pay off McDougal in order to help Trump, by suppressing a scandal.
19. American Media, Pecker and Dylan Howard, the company's chief content officer, have all retained lawyers, WSj says. Translation: they know they did something that was shady at best.
20. McDougal has said in her lawsuit (that was settled in April) that American Media and her lawyer at the time lured her into the agreement under false pretenses. She believed she'd be paid to TELL her story, not to be silenced.
21. "American Media would pay her $150,000 but “would not publish the story because...David Pecker is close personal friends with Mr. Trump,” Ms. McDougal recalled her lawyer, Keith Davidson, telling her, according to the suit." Reminder that Davidson IS COOPERATING with FBI.
22. Davidson has been answering questions from SDNY. however he has refused to turn in docs he SHOULD turn in to Mr. Avenatti and Ms. Daniels regarding the time he supposedly represented her and his convos with Cohen at that time.
23. Except because of the search warrant executed on Cohen's home and office? THERE ARE PLENTY OF RECEIPTS. Oopsie. Davidson is in huge trouble just based on the few emails we saw and if SDNY is sniffing around the Enquirer, they probably have payment receipts as well.
24. In sum, this is another episode of"Choo choo! All aboard the flipping train!" 🚂 bc it's either that or disbarment/criminal charges for various people involved. Enjoy the show, bc #MuellerIsComing /END.

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More from @aliasvaughn

Sep 28, 2018
1. Simon Kukes, a Houston-based oil executive, sent an email to a Russian official in Moscow in July 2016, boasting of his connections to Trump campaign and requesting a face-to-face meeting. The official is Vyacheslav Pavlovsky, a former Russian ambassador to Norway.
2. NBC HAS THE EMAILS. Kukes wrote to Pavlovsky" I have been actively involved in Trump's election campagn, and am part of the group on strategy deveopment. I will be in Switzerland July 20 to Aug. 2. Let me know how you are doing and whether you want to meet." Oh. OH.
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Read 13 tweets
Sep 13, 2018
1. MANAFORT AGREED TO PLEA DEAL WITH MUELLER. Politely bear in mind, no matter what we actually SEE of this, given the evidence Mueller has, there's NO WAY Mueller entered a plea deal without meaningful cooperation. The cooperation part? Can easily be sealed.
2. This means Manafort could easily do the same as Cohen. Just plead guilty to n. counts, and we don't see any "cooperation" agreement. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist. The two can easily be separated, with the cooperation agreement sealed for obvious reasons here.
3. I absolutely don't think the news about the "joint defense agreement" is current and I also think it is being put out for a specific reason. It's clear that there's been coordinated effort to make everyone think Manafort won't "flip" . That's the easiest way to protect him.
Read 11 tweets
Sep 12, 2018
1. Manafort is INDEED in talks with prosecutors (MEANING MUELLER bc HE is the prosecutor in this case) about a possible plea deal. BLOOP, people. BLOOP!
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3. "But the discussions indicate a possible shift in strategy for Manafort" No kidding. When the prospect of the rest of his life in prison materialized, Manafort finally saw that oopsie, he was cornered and if he ever wanted to enjoy life again? Best to talk to Mueller, stat.
Read 17 tweets
Sep 7, 2018
OH IMAGINE THAT. Guess who knows all about this? Michael Cohen. Who took care of this type of business. FOR TRUMP.
2. The details of the story are BEYOND disgusting but pay attention to this detail that former Playmate Shera Bechard cites in her LAWSUIT against Broidy: "Bechard recalled Broidy telling her that he admired Trump’s "uncanny ability to sexually abuse women and get away with it.""
3. "Among Bechard’s allegations are that Broidy refused to wear condoms and didn’t disclose to her that he had genital herpes until years after their sexual relationship, according to a court filing. "
Not even going to comment.
Read 15 tweets
Aug 31, 2018
1. Bruce Ohr is the Justice Department lawyer who was told by Christopher Steele that Russian intelligence believed it had Trump "over a barrel". Start seeing why Trump is going after him?
2. These details pertain to a breakfast that happened on July 30, 2016. Ohr described the breakfast to CONGRESS this week in a private interview. And that's how the GOP Trump lackeys went to tell Trump, he found out and decided he can't have a witness at DoJ.
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Read 30 tweets
Aug 23, 2018
1. What Cohen's actually explosive knowledge of facts covers, that can make the entire house of cards crash: the hacking and the Trump Tower meeting, both of which TRUMP KNEW about and in the hacking case, an event Trump even encouraged.
2. In the case of the hacking, there's a $50,000 mysterious payment Cohen made to an undisclosed tech company to help the Trump campaign, that awfully sounds like the arrangements the Steele dossier says Cohen made to pay off Russian hackers "without it being traced".
3. Cohen's lawyer Lanny Davis specifically said on @maddow that Cohen has knowledge about the hacking that is of interest for Mueller. And the detail of the tech company payment emerged from the indictment. If the connection is accurate (and it seems like it is), this is huge.
Read 21 tweets

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