Common Cause Files Two Complaints Charging That Trump’s $130,000 Payout To Porn Star Violated Federal Law

download-2The watchdog group Common Cause on filed a complaint on Monday with the Federal Election Commission and the Justice Department alleging that Donald Trump violated federal law with his secret payment of $130,000 to a porn star known as Stormy Daniels.   Daniels gave a long interview to In Touch magazine detailing a yearlong affair with Trump but later accepted the money and signed a statement denying such a sexual relationship.  Common Cause argues that the payment was “an unreported in-kind contribution to Donald J. Trump for President, Inc., and an unreported expenditure by the committee — because the funds were paid for the purpose of influencing the 2016 president general election — in violation of the campaign finance reporting requirements.”

download-1We recently discussed how Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen used shell companies and fake name to pay the money to Stephanie Clifford (aka Stormy Daniels).   Cohen in 2011 threatened to sue the publication if they ran the interview.  It worked in 2011 but last week the magazine defied him and ran the story.

I have long been an avid supporter of Common Cause which has a legendary record of public interest advocacy and continues to be a strong voice for good government. However, on these complaints I am a bit unclear on a critical nexus.  The complaints admit that they do not know the source of this money.  While they may view the complaints as the only means for confirming the source, it is a highly speculative filing. Moreover, the suggestion is that the effort to silence Clifford was clearly done for campaign purposes.  It certainly could have been done for that purpose but it could also have been done for personal and marital reasons.  After all, in 2011, Cohen threatened to sue the publications of these allegations before Trump’s run for the presidency.  He reportedly did so to protect Trump’s celebrity status and reputation.  It is possible that this money came from Trump (through his personal lawyer) and was done to protection his professional reputation as opposed to his presidential aspirations.  The point is that none of us know, including Common Cause.  The organization is hoping that the filing will force the confirmation of the funds and the identity of the “John Doe” who facilitated the payment.

The filings could be dismissed as speculative.  However, the concern is a substantive one.  Cohen should confirm that the money came from Trump or explain why a donor would given such money unless as way of supporting his candidacy.

Here are the two filings: Common Cause complaints.

194 thoughts on “Common Cause Files Two Complaints Charging That Trump’s $130,000 Payout To Porn Star Violated Federal Law

  1. Does the “shared value system of evangelical leaders and Russia” have a tangible component?
    Are there any connections between evangelical churches and Russian money?
    Evangelical congregants suffer from wage stagnation yet, big bucks are buying the land and mega church facilities.

    The convergence of political action… the Koch’s, their GOP politicians, the NRA, and Putin oligarchs…leads where?

    The views of David Keene (NRA), Foster Freiss (activist political Christian and Bannon’s choice for a congressional seat) and, the Washington Times (see Wikipedia paragraph describing the Times’ Crosstalk), …lead where?

    • Anonemouse, this will, indeed, make fascinating material for Professor Comey’s forthcoming Ethics class at William & Mary College. Students there will be lucky to have a real mentor in Professor Comey, serving as a role model for sound ethical conduct.

    • Anonymous,..
      – Interesting development. Reminds me of when Hillary’s chief-of-staff at the State Dept. “became” Hillary’s attorney during the email investgation.
      I don’t think Comey has anything to fear from the Mueller probe, given the close Mueller-Comey relationship.
      Comey might have some concerns about a few other ongoing investigations.
      I think one thing to watch for is if attorney-client privilege is used……Clinton and Cheryl Mills seem to have been given a lot of leeway once Mills “acted” as Hillary’s lawyer.

  2. Grateful for the sanity of Sen Richard Burr, Republican from NC on the FBI text issue. The republican nutjobs are mostly in the house.

  3. And so he gently closed the door, shutting out the sound of the babble from the occupants of the common room in Bedlam…

    • I’m not sure what you’re referring to here – couldn’t follow the thread. But it’s exactly what I think Robert Mueller does every
      single day as he and his team methodically investigate what he was charged with investigating.

      Trump et al resort to smears because that’s all they have. IOW, they got nothing. Nunes, Goetz, Jordan, Hannity, Jones, Carlson are indeed the lunatics in Bedlam.

  4. SIDEBAR

    “SECRET SOCIETY”

    “There’s a text exchange between these two FBI agents, these two supposed to be objective fact-centric FBI

    agents, saying that perhaps this is the first meeting of the ‘secret society,’”

    Congressman Trey Gowdy said.

  5. ” It certainly could have been done for that purpose but it could also have been done for personal and marital reasons…..to protect Trump’s … reputation.” WTF? His reputation is a BAD one. His marriage is one of convenience: to have a “good-looking piece of ass” to parade around. His business reputation is one of filing multiple bankruptcies, thus cheating craftsmen and building contractors of money they were owed. How about Trump University? Did that contribute to his “reputation” in a positive way?

    Any sentient person (so, by definition, I am excluding several people who comment here) knows that the cover up was done to continue currying favor from the radical religious that his handlers knew would be necessary to keep as supporters. That’s why the timing of the pay off is critical. We all need to know the source of the money. The reason is obvious.

    However, if you want to go with Jon’s theory, that the payoff was done to protect Trump’s third marriage, this now opens up exploration of Chump’s marriage. Can’t wait to read the transcript of Melania’s deposition. Do his lawyers really want to go down that road?

    • Turley has been quite erratic in his commentary…sensationalist guesswork masquerading as informed legal opinion, likely to keep his mug in the limelight on FOX News.

      This article is much better than the crap he’s been posting for the last year.

      • Like a typical Leftist Bubble Child, you condemn FOX News by reflex, while never acknowledging the host of FakeNews coming out of the Main Stream Media. Why do I suspect that if you were walking on a sidewalk, and a Steinway Grand Piano fell from a window above, and impacted your head, that it is the the piano that would shatter to pieces, while your head remained intact???

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

    • You seem to voice what normal people know as obvious and I agree with you. The rest of the right wing authoritarian cattle on this site waiting for another Turely Whopper to prop up their authoritarian criminal boss will never understand.

      Trump’s character is terrible. He prefers the illegal when convenient or beneficial: multiple events of tax fraud, 106 money laundering crimes at one casino, denial of a gaming license in Sydney bc of Trump’s numerous mafia ties, the bait and switch fraud factor of Trump University which stole $40 million from thousands of Americans, drug cartel ties, 22 sexual assault allegations, perversion associated to his beauty pageants and the lies…the constant incessant lying.

      Turley has moored his values to the Trump machine…he masquerades as an objective commentator on current events but that stuff doesn’t fly when you are a human being whose perspective is informed by values. You can’t check your values at the door to voice legal arguments. Actually I guess one can, you just come off sounding ridiculous like Turley.

    • Do you want to know why you come off as such an idiotic Democratic Party cultist and hack??? It is stuff like this statement of yours, from above: “His marriage is one of convenience: to have a “good-looking piece of ass” to parade around.”

      You see that is merely your OPINION of his marriage. But you present it as if it were a FACT. Then, after doing what is legally called “pleading a conclusion”, you go on to base your following OPINIONS, on that OPINION, as if they were also fact based.

      You might as well just run around waving your hands in the air, and howling like a maniac.

      Plus, you never dealt with the FACTS that I presented you on your erroneous “Clinton Surplus” assertions. You just called me names and proceeded to spin your head in circles while spewing out a green, vomitous-looking substance.

      Would it have hurt you to say, “Thank you, Squeeky, for pointing out my error! I don’t understand all this accounting stuff, but now that you have enlightened me, I will never again make the error of speaking about a “Clinton surplus”. It was sooo very kind of you to take time out of your busy day to provide me the real facts, particularly when I have been such a mean and nasty b*tch to you.”

      Because, I don’t hold your lack of knowledge against you, because probably 99% of the country doesn’t understand this stuff. But, if I, as one of the 1% who do understand it can take the time to tell you how it works, then you should be grateful about me letting you into that special 1% of the informed people. BTW, did you even read what I gave you??? This detailed analysis:

      http://www.craigsteiner.us/articles/16

      Squeeky Fromm
      Girl Reporter

      PS: Also, are you going to thank me for giving you the Obama book blurb thingy???

    • Has anyone tied Trump to the fund expenditure? No. Has anyone found anyone involved other than one staffer? No. Watch the kangaroos hop hop hop to their little court of comrades …REJECTED.

  6. This is ridiculous. The funds were paid, if true, to avoid divorce #3 and public embarrassment. They threatened to sue long before Trump was ever a candidate for office.

    They are desperately trying one tactic after another to attempt a soft coup.

    Meanwhile, I am quite gobsmacked that we have now proven that Hillary Clinton paid Russian spies to produce false documents to smear Donald Trump, which she tried to release just before the election, when there would not have been enough time to refute them. She took over control of the DNC and defrauded her competing Democratic candidates. All of this was an attempt to defraud voters and snatch an election.

    And Mueller is grilling Trump’s administration about Russia?

    • Karen, honey, listen: no one could embarrass YOUR President by any sex scandal or proof of him cheating people in business. The only way to embarrass him is to wet down that comb-over and expose his scalp-reduction scar and residual bald spot. Alternatively, if there was video proof that he can’t get it up, or that he’s incontinent, which may be why he is weird about not allowing White House staff to change the bed linens.

      Not a “soft coup”. This fat slob has no business in the White House. The majority of Americans have consistently agreed on this for a full year now.

      Why do you buy into the Kellyanne Pivot whenever a new scandal erupts involving your President? HRC is old news. Nothing about her excuses or mitigates what fatso has done and is doing to hurt this country. You need to stop watching Fox News because they are leading you astray and causing you unnecessary emotional distress.

      • Nut cha cha – few if any people aside from the Deep State and lunatic Hilbots care about Stormy, Trump’s personal habits, his hair, etc. We care about real ISSUES that are happening during his tenure.

        HRC remains a person of interest as the investigation was bogus thanks to the FBI, the death count has continued – and the Clinton Foundation has yet to return the billions they stole from Haiti.

      • Yes Comrade RoboClone Certainly Comrade robo Clone…. any proof? No no proof. Why would a defective machine part need proof. back to your mechanic and slug down some three in one oil REJECTED for lack of human presence.

    • When T rump moved into the govmint we had a soft coup. A soft porn coup. Now da coup is getting more into da hard porn coup with da spankin and da threesomes. Putin has some hard stuff on da tapes.

  7. So I checked out Common Cause – first thing I see is a petition “Congress must protect the Russia investigation” What a farce.

    Russsia-Gate Implodes: The real “collusion” is the alliance of foreign actors and the Democrats

    “When all this is over – if it ever is – Congress must gather its courage and examine exactly what went on here. We need a new Church Committee to rein in the FBI and the CIA — and the other 16 intelligence agencies we inexplicably operate.

    That, of course, is after the culprits are thrown in jail.

    And for the absolute last time: this isn’t about Trump. It’s about preserving the American republic against rogue intelligence agencies and the FBI – a national police force which we don’t need, which the Founders never envisioned, and which has proven itself to be a deadly danger to the American system.”

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/48647.htm

  8. Common Cause enters the fray and Jon Turley states: “I have long been an avid supporter of Common Cause”. I have no problem with Jon Turley’s personal support of Common Cause but his avid support tells us that Jon Turley is politically on the left dispelling the theory of some bloggers that Turley is right wing.

  9. Cernovich tweets this question:

    Mike Cernovich
    🇺🇸
    ‏Verified account @Cernovich

    “Is there any member of Congress who talks a bigger game than @TGowdySC, but does nothing? He’s a total coward. Tough on TV, but never refers the criminals to DOJ.”

    I would say Elizabeth Warren from the Left.

    George Carlin was right

    • Warren has been stopped in her tracks by T rump’s boys from Goldman Showers. They win. The fix is in. Da T rumpers like you get T rump Chump change. Is da Cernovich givin his crap writers a raise?

      • Warren was stopped under Obama – perhaps as you say GS was behind it. Still, they trot her out when useful to rail and shake her teeny little fist.

        Point is it’s ALL a show on both sides of the aisle to pretend that they are actually doing something.

        BTW – I picked up the Cernovich tweet off Jared Beck’s feed – you know, the guy who is pursuing the DNC lawsuit. Not exactly a Trump supporter….

  10. The similarities (and hilarities) to the Birther just keep coming! Remember how the Birthers filed numerous lawsuits against Obama based on the SUSPICION that he was born in Kenya??? Not that there was any proof or much evidence, but mostly on the SUSPICION. Remember how everybody laughed at them, because SUSPICIONS do not form a cognizable basis for a lawsuit.

    But, the Birthers figured they could file the lawsuit, and then get discovery, which would prove their SUSPICIONS true. Now, Common Cause is doing the same thing! And trying to keep a straight face while doing it!

    How the high and mighty have fallen! I am just rolling on the floor laughing my ass off!

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

    • There is NO dispute that Stormy Sue was paid off. By contrast, there was never any proof that President Obama was born anyplace other than Hawaii. The only real question about the Stormy payoff is the source of the funds, which came from a shell corporation set up by Michael Cohen, Chump’s lawyer. What is the real source of the funds? That’s the question the lawsuit may answer, and the pay off may indeed have broken election laws.

      • Sure there was “evidence” that Obama was born in Kenya, or at least “evidence” that he claimed to be born there. For example, this 2007 blurb from his literary agent for his book, Dreams From My Father:

        The question is, what is the weight of the evidence, but yes there was some evidence.

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

            • https://www.snopes.com/politics/obama/birthers/booklet.asp

              “The editor of the biographical text about Barack Obama which was included in the booklet maintained that the mention of Kenya was an error on her part and was not based on any information provided to her by Obama himself:

              ‘Miriam Goderich edited the text of the bio; she is now a partner at the Dystel & Goderich agency, which lists Obama as one of its current clients.

              ““You’re undoubtedly aware of the brouhaha stirred up by Breitbart about the erroneous statement in a client list Acton & Dystel published in 1991 (for circulation within the publishing industry only) that Barack Obama was born in Kenya. This was nothing more than a fact checking error by me — an agency assistant at the time,” Goderich wrote. “There was never any information given to us by Obama in any of his correspondence or other communications suggesting in any way that he was born in Kenya and not Hawaii. I hope you can communicate to your readers that this was a simple mistake and nothing more.””

              • And Miriam is still alive, bless her heart. Michelle’s friend at the hospital who released the long form did not fare as well.

                • Let’s be serious shall we and acknowledge that the editor put in there to make an otherwise very boring and unknown nobody look more interesting. It’s how the business works.

                  For example, I have a friend I went to high school with. Her upbringing and home life was as docile and normal as can be. However, her publicist pitches a very different version of events in order to make her client profitable.

              • Sooo, unlike your comrade, Natacha, you admit that the blurb is a real thing, and not just a Breitbart FakeNews thing! Great!

                Now, as to the weight of that “evidence”, there are several options available:

                1. It is true and accurate;
                2. It is false, and the result of a mistaken assumption by the author as she states;
                3. Obama falsely told certain people that he was from Kenya, for some hitherto unknown personal reasons.

                Personally, my SUSPICIONS are that Option 3 is probably the most likely background for the document. My goodness, but didn’t Elizabeth Warren lie about being a Cherokee Indian to get into Harvard??? Sooo, its not like Option 3 is completely out of the question. And as far as the author of the blurb saying that she made a mistake, it isn’t like people don’t tell all kinds of lies in deference to power. Like with Hillary’s email.

                Squeeky Fromm
                Girl Reporter

          • OMG, that is sooo a typical Democratic/Leftist rebuttal! Here, I have a dare for you, Natacha:

            Pretend that you are a neutral reporter, and wish to confirm whether the “Blurb” is for real, or is a fakenews item by Breitbart. To do that, you have to investigate these little thingies called “facts.” It will take you less than 5 minutes on Google to do this, and probably less than 2 minutes. Then, report back here and let everybody know what is going on. Even give a link or two.

            I am betting that you can NOT do this simple task, for two reasons:

            1. You already know that the Blurb is for real;
            2. You would rather die than admit to something that does not confirm your biases.

            🙂

            Squeeky Fromm
            Girl Reporter

        • Obama’s application for high school in Indonesia claimed that Obama was an Indonesian citizen which is not reflected in any visa or passport documentation.

          • In order to go to this school he had to be a citizen of Indonesia. As such, he (actually done by his mother since he was a minor) had to renounce any other citizenship. Indonesia does not allow dual citizenship with any country.

            • If what you say is completely accurate then was he a naturalized citizen when he returned or did someone forget to naturalize him after he gave up citizenship?

              I guess the legal question is does birthright citizenship disappear when one gives up citizenship? The second question is that since he was a minor could he then upon return to the US regain his birthright citizenship? I am not asking bettykath or nonlawyers unless one has significant knowledge in this part of the law.

              I don’t know if the country has adequately addressed the question of those with dual citizenship or those whose citizenship was renounced.

      • Nut cha cha,

        You lose again!

        Just like the “Coups “R” Us” FBI is a corrupt “secret society” run by traitors ensconced by the “deep state”, the immutably ineligible Obongo was illegally and unconstitutionally ensconced in the presidency by the very same “deep state”.

        Obongo’s problem is that he will never be eligible for the presidency because, unlike all presidents before him, he is not and never will be a “natural born citizen” as his father was not a U.S. citizen but a foreign citizen.

        The Jay/Washington letter of July, 1787, raised the presidential requirement from “citizen” to “natural born citizen” to place a “strong check” against foreign allegiances by the commander-in-chief.

        The Law of Nations was “…continually in the hands of the Members of our Congress, now sitting,…”, Ben Franklin letter to Charles Dumas of December,1775.
        _____

        “…in order to be of the country, it is necessary that a person be born of a father who is a citizen;…”

        Law of Nations, 1758
        Book 1, Ch. 19
        § 212. Citizens and natives.

        “The citizens are the members of the civil society; bound to this society by certain duties, and subject to its authority, they equally participate in its advantages. The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens. As the society cannot exist and perpetuate itself otherwise than by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers, and succeed to all their rights. The society is supposed to desire this, in consequence of what it owes to its own preservation; and it is presumed, as matter of course, that each citizen, on entering into society, reserves to his children the right of becoming members of it. The country of the fathers is therefore that of the children; and these become true citizens merely by their tacit consent. We shall soon see whether, on their coming to the years of discretion, they may renounce their right, and what they owe to the society in which they were born. I say, that, in order to be of the country, it is necessary that a person be born of a father who is a citizen; for, if he is born there of a foreigner, it will be only the place of his birth, and not his country.”

        • One part of that the left does not agree with is the right not to become a citizen. One reason is their need for a ready supply of cannon fodder.

          Think about it . the cheese in the trap is college loans and maybe a federal job. but to get that they must sign ujp for selective service. Even though it’s a non voluntary requirement anyway. At no time does the high school counselor explain there is a choice so they just sign and bang go from potential draftee to volunteer awaiting reporting orders

          The argument is the draft will never be used? If so? Whjy does it exist?

          It also keeps women as second class citizens in their historical roll as baby factories for next generations wars. MOST of which have been started by the good ole party of the left to the tune of 600,000 or so deahs of US Service personnel as compareed to less than 600 when a RINO was in the oval office. 1900 to 2000. Since then and the near completion of the one party system that number has been about 6,000 each even steven.

          Source to start with every World Almanac book of Facts published by……a right wing or centrist publisher. Not at all it’s their own left wing.

          and a bunch of other easily found by google sources.

          Chief architect of keep ing the draft in force, up and running and ready to go? Rep. Charles Wrangel and he Democrat/socialist party.

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