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Everything About the ‘Donald Trump’s Lawyer Paid Stormy Daniels $130,000 of His Own Money’ Story Stinks – Here’s Why

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Michael Cohen Does Not Say He Wasn’t Compensated in Any Way, and Why Make the Admission Now?

The New York Times Tuesday night published a bombshell: Donald Trump’s longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen admitted he paid adult film actress Stormy Daniels $130,000 of his own money just weeks before the 2016 election. 

Everything about the story stinks.

“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,” Cohen told The Times in a carefully-crafted statement. Stormy Daniels is the stage name of Stephanie Clifford. “The payment to Ms. Clifford was lawful, and was not a campaign contribution or a campaign expenditure by anyone.”

His statement does not say if Donald Trump reimbursed him, or compensated him in any manner. Did he get a raise? A bonus? A house? His statement does not say if a Trump family member reimbursed him, or compensated him in any manner.

His statement does not say, and he refused to answer, if Donald Trump knew about the payment, or if he has made similar transactions before.

Perhaps most importantly, his statement does not say why he paid Stormy Daniels $130,000.

Trump denies having an affair with Daniels in 2006, months after his youngest son was born to his wife Melania.

Recently, Stormy Daniels appeared to deny the affair, recently brought to light again by The Wall Street Journal. Shortly after, The Washington Post detailed all the times she did not deny the affair – all the times before the $130,000 payment.

What also stinks is the timing of the revelation: During one of the biggest scandals to plague the Trump administration to date, this news, perhaps designed to distract, comes out. 

But what’s very important and separated from some of the salacious headlines is that this is a matter for the Federal Election Commission.

The former director of the Office of Government Ethics, Walter Shaub, offered this sarcastic response to the news (which he appears to have later deleted):

Common Cause, which filed a Federal Election Commission complaint, supposedly triggered the statement from Trump’s attorney Michael Cohen. 

Here’s what one Common Cause attorney, a former special counsel at the FEC, said:

Common Cause says Cohen’s admission of making the payment “does not make the Trump campaign’s legal problems go away.”

Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell weighed in when the news broke Tuesday night, insisting the Federal Elections Commission investigate:

Image by IowaPolitics.com via Flickr and a CC license

 

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TALK ABOUT RIGGED

Pence Suggests Unnamed Trump SCOTUS Nominee Should Skip Committee and Just Be Confirmed Before ‘Election Issues’ Arise

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Vice President Mike Pence is in full campaign mode now, making the rounds on news channels and holding re-election rallies. On Tuesday the Indiana Republican told Fox News Business’ Lou Dobbs that perhaps President Donald Trump’s yet-to-be-named Supreme Court nominee should just skip the usual Judiciary Committee hearings and get confirmed by the U.S. Senate immediately.

Pence said the nominee should get a committee hearing, but only “if needs be.”

He might have been thinking that since Chairman Lindsey Graham has already said there are enough votes to confirm, even though no one knows who the nominee is, why take up valuable time when the outcome has, for the first time in U.S. history, been preordained without even a facade of interest in vetting.

Insisting that Trump has “a duty” under “the Constitution to appoint a new justice to the Supreme Court,” Vice President Pence said, “we respect the role of the Senate to advise and consent but President Trump truly believes that the Senate should move thoroughly thoughtfully and quickly and and move to consideration a hearing, if needs be and ultimately to a floor vote because we you know we have, we have major issues in the country today.”

What are the major Supreme Court issues?

“You know, Lou with all of the talk about universal unsolicited mail and validating where we see states around the country that are now, extending the deadline,” Pence said, referring to President Trump’s lie that voting by mail will make the election “rigged.”

“There is a possibility that election issues may come before the Supreme Court in the days following the election and all the more reason why we should have nine justices on the Supreme Court to, to be able to resolve any issues that may arise then or on any other matters.”

In other words, Trump wants a justice on the nation’s top court prepared to hand him the election.

Watch:

 

Image by Michael Candelori via Flickr and a CC license

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SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE?

‘Soldiers for Christ’: Trump Cabinet Bible Study Teacher Calls Elections a ‘Spiritual Battle’ That ‘Believers Will Win’

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Ralph Drollinger, a Bible study teacher who uses his extraordinary access to top government officials in the United States and abroad to push right-wing policies as biblically mandated, distributed a Bible study Monday telling readers that “it is imperative that committed Christians be praying for an outcome that glorifies our Lord, and that believers will win office.”

“Don’t misinterpret the elections: they are first and foremost a spiritual battle requiring mature, spiritual weaponry,” Drollinger wrote in a Bible study distributed Monday. He also repeated his assertion that the only prayers that God hears and acts on are those of Christians.

In previous writings, Drollinger has demonstrated little respect for Christians who interpret the Bible differently than he does. He has called the “social Gospel” that motivates millions of liberal American Christians “a perversion of scripture” and “not Christianity whatsoever!” He has called Catholicism “one of the primary false religions of the world.” He urges public officials not to take part in “syncretistic” events like the National Prayer Breakfast, arguing that by participating in events that combine different forms of belief, attendees invite God’s wrath rather than his blessing.

Drollinger holds Bible study sessions for members of the House and Senate as well as Trump’s Cabinet while his written Bible studies are distributed widely and used by Capitol Ministries leaders active in state and local governments and foreign governments. Drollinger writes in this week’s Bible study that only people who are “mature in Christ” can be “ideal candidates for public office.”

Drollinger, whose Capitol Ministries is committed to evangelizing public officials and “discipling” them to his biblical worldview, writes that elections are “a critical time” for a public official who is “a soldier for Christ.” Drollinger writes that “when the believer wields the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God, and Satan reacts through his minions, there will exist critical times or seasons for necessary petitioning—that is, if you are a soldier for Christ.”

In “Oaks in Office,” his handbook for public officials, Drollinger wrote that “the critical and preeminent duty of the Church in an institutionally separated society” is “to evangelize and disciple—to Christianize—the leaders of the State and its citizenry.” Nevertheless, Drollinger insists that he is not a Christian nationalist because he does not believe in changing the structure of government to give the church an official role. He says he supports institutional but not influential separation of church and state.

Among Drollinger’s many fans within the Trump administration is Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who has used his position to open doors for Drollinger to bring his proselytizing and right-wing-policy-promoting ministry into the inner circles of government in foreign capitals.

This article was originally published at Right Wing Watch and is republished here by permission.

Image: Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead via Flickr 

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DEPRAVED INDIFFERENCE

McEnany: ‘The Fact That We Have Come Nowhere Near’ 2 Million Coronavirus Deaths Is ‘a Testament’ to Trump

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White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany defended President Donald Trump’s misleading and false claim that the coronavirus “affects virtually nobody,” and insisted that it is “a testament” to Trump that 2 million Americans have not died from COVID-19.

The U.S. just crossed the tragic marker of 200,000 deaths from the coronavirus pandemic.

“As you’ve heard several doctors in the Task Force note from this podium, we were looking at the prospect of 2 million people potentially perishing from the coronavirus in this country,” McEnany told reporters Tuesday, suggesting wrongly that doing absolutely nothing would have been a legitimate course of action Trump could have taken.

She called the more than 200,000 deaths, “a testament to the hard work done by the Task Force and this President.”

On Monday at a rally in Ohio Trump told supporters the coronavirus “affects elderly people. Elderly people with heart problems and other problems. If they have other problems, that’s what it really affects. That’s it.”

“You know, in some states, thousands of people, nobody young” dies, Trump added. “Below the age of 18, like, nobody. They have a strong immune system, who knows. You look — take your hat off to the young, because they have a hell of an immune system. But it affects virtually nobody. It’s an amazing thing.”

McEnany told CNN’s Jim Acosta Tuesday afternoon that President Trump was “giving critical information” at Monday night’s rally when he said the virus “affects elderly people” and “that’s it.”

 

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