Justice Department Tells Court That Trump’s Own Admissions Undermine Claims Of Attorney-Client Privilege Over Cohen Material

160px-Official_Portrait_of_President_Donald_Trump_(cropped) I (and many others) have cautioned the President for over a year that his tweets and public comments are underlying his case (and litigation like the immigration challenges) in federal court.  Now the Justice Department has used the President’s latest comments in a call-in to “Fox and Friends” as eviscerating efforts to claim privilege over documents on his behalf in the review of the material seized from his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen.  While opposing counsel like Democratic state attorneys general have used Trump’s comments against his Administration and the Justice Department has struggled to defend against such use, this is the first time that his own Justice Department is using the President’s comments effectively against his interests.  In the meantime, it was revealed yesterday that the FBI seized 16 different cellphones from Michael Cohen.

I have repeatedly written on the failure of the President to sever ties to Cohen who has a reputation of a reckless and flawed attorney.  I have also written that Cohen seemed to do everything possible to negate privilege protections for his client.   Instead, the President doubled down on Cohen, not just calling him a good lawyer but his lawyer. Most recently on Air Force One (after having a very public dinner with Cohen), Trump declared “You’ll have to ask Michael Cohen. Michael is my attorney. You’ll have to ask Michael.”
The statement left many of us agape, but now the President seems to be changing direction and distancing himself from Cohen.  In the call-in, the President insisted that Cohen only dealt with a “tiny, tiny little fraction” of Trump’s legal work.  He also played directly into the narrative of prosecutors and Stormy Daniels’ attorney that Cohen is not really an attorney in most of his dealings:  “Michael is a businessman. He also practices law, but I would say the big thing is his business and they’re [the feds] looking at something that has to do with his business. I have nothing to do with his business.”

Trump added that he “has many attorneys … sadly, I have so many attorneys, you wouldn’t even believe it . . . From what I understand, [the feds are] looking at his businesses, and I hope he’s in great shape. I’m not involved, and I’ve been told I’m not involved.”

The Justice Department pounced on the admissions to challenge the claims of attorney-client privilege raised on Trump’s behalf but Cohen and Trump’s counsel.  Citing the statements of Sean Hannity as well, the Justice Department told the court. In a letter to U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood, Robert Khuzami, the deputy U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York wrote: “These statements by two of Cohen’s three identified clients suggest that the seized materials are unlikely to contain voluminous privileged documents, further supporting the importance of efficiency here.”

Having a client saying on television that “This has nothing to do with me”  and “I’ve been told I’m not involved” is obviously devastating to arguments of privilege just as Trump’s counsel was trying to assert his protections.

151 thoughts on “Justice Department Tells Court That Trump’s Own Admissions Undermine Claims Of Attorney-Client Privilege Over Cohen Material”

  1. Ian Bremmer tweeted out today:

    I’ve been critical of Trump foreign policy missteps in past year: TPP, Paris, too many unnecessary missteps with allies to count.

    But today’s historic North/South Korea breakthrough does not happen without priority & pressure from US President.

    Trump deserves full credit.

    ————–

    Trump, Xi, Moon and Kim together get my vote for the Nobel Peace Prize.

    ————–

    Obviously, still a lot of work to do before there’s sustainable Peace.

    But it’s not like the Nobel Committee doesn’t give Prizes in advance of accomplishment…

    @ianbremmer

    ian bremmer

    Verified account

    27 Apr 2018

    1. You say: “Trump deserves full credit”? For what? Do you think his insulting “Little Rocket Man” comments brought about a meeting between the two leaders? Do you think Pence and his fugly wife sitting down and refusing to applaud the combined North-South Korea Womens’ hockey team, after Kim Jon Un’s sister applauded the U.S. Womens’ Team, did anything good?

      You are delusional, just like Trump. Anything good that happens in the world, he takes credit for. What “breakthrough” are you talking about? The two men met, on their own. Trump wasn’t involved. Representatives of the two countries met before the Olympics, to combine the womens’ hockey team. Trump had nothing to do with this, either. To my knowledge, there are still a North and South Korea. The countries haven’t united, signed any treaties, or done anything other than meet. Trump had nothing to do with it.

        1. Natacha is clone, a machine part. Not a human. The Progammer came up with the endless loop quality with the static in the background as it grinds to a half for lack of propery maintenance?

        2. Haha. Nice. And you assume anyone here gives two sh*ts whether you’re “sympathetic?”

          this is to “she’s a GILF fo sho” sufferin

      1. Boring as usual Comrade or did The Collective change your programmer. My my my how green s’not drippy your pinocchio has become. Not to mention predictable. Are you really just a nom de plume for Alec Baldwin?

      2. Natacha – I think the “I have a red button and it is bigger than yours and it works” caused a major bowel movement by the Rocket Man. 😉

        1. You have two loose cannons here, one of which can be brought under control, the other of which cannot. If you think that Kim Jong Un is afraid of The Donald, you are mistaken. He probably knows that one or several people would tackle Trump if he tried to go for the “football” and put in the nuclear code. There are no such constraints on Kim Jong Un. Trump’s infantile threats are just that, and they are beneath the dignity of this country.

          You can live in the fantasy world of Fox News that Trump isn’t a braggadocious blowhard rodeo clown with a yuge ego that cheated to “win the victory”, and who is feared by North Korea, but it’s still just a fantasy.

          1. He probably knows that one or several people would tackle Trump if he tried to go for the “football”

            I doubt Kim Jong Un shares your fantasy life.

            1. Do you really think that the level-headed generals would let him nuke North Korea? Do you think that the 2 Koreas haven’t been looking for a way to at least partially start some overtures of cooperation? Don’t you realize that the Olympics was the perfect segue for there to be at least some form of camaraderie? Trump had nothing to do with the Olympics or the decision for the 2 countries to unite, at least for creating a joint Womens’ Hockey Team. It went well, so they’re trying some more meetings. Trump and his nuclear button are irrelevant.

              What was your reaction when Kim Jong Un’s sister stood and applauded the U.S. Womens’ Hockey team, but Pence and wife sat down with their hands folded? Who was the class act here?

              1. Your problem in understanding this is that you think your fantasies about Trump are real. They are not, except between your ears.

                1. That’s your opinion. Actually, about 68% of the population thinks that the day glo bozo is a buffoonish cretin, As I’ve said before however, the damage this clown is doing will continue after he’s long gone; because at some point in time, the walls will get so near closing in on him, that this idiot will issue a lawful order to nuke some country or another as a distraction, and the adult generals in the room will be forced to disobey that order. Now that’s a problem.

                  this is to the nutty sufferer

                  1. Marky Mark Mark – Rasmussen has him at 51% approval, higher than Obama at this point in office. Not sure where you are getting 68% from. You got a cite for that 68%?

                  2. “That’s your opinion. Actually, about 68% of the population thinks that the day glo bozo is a buffoonish cretin, ”

                    Current presidential approcal rating – April 26 – 47% – that BTW is EXACTLY Obama’s approval on April 26, 2010.
                    Did 68% of the population thing that Obama was a Buffoon ?

                    I do not personally care what adjectives you use to describe Trump.
                    But the rest of us spent 8 years being called hateful hating haters for the slightest disagreement with Obama.

                    I think it is pretty clear where on the political spectrum intolerance and vicious hatred emanates.
                    Call Trump whatever you want. But understand you have ceded any right to criticise others.
                    Frankly I think that the Neo Nazis are more tolerant than you.

                  3. “As I’ve said before however, the damage this clown is doing will continue after he’s long gone”

                    What damage ?
                    Jobs continue to expand,
                    We have 3% growth and it is looking sustainable.
                    Wages are starting to rise
                    Standard of living is starting to rise.
                    Public confidence is the highest it has been in decades.
                    No only is China being restrained, but in many things they are actually working with us.
                    There is more hope regarding NK than there has been in 65 years.

                    I can go on and on.

                    While there are things I disagree with too.

                    Inarguably the country is better off during the year+ of Trump than in any similiar period under Obama.

                    This is the irreparable “damage” Trump has done ?

                    You have a very bizzarre idea of damage.

                  4. “because at some point in time, the walls will get so near closing in on him,”

                    Maybe – the left has been promising that for almost 2 years, yet we are FARTHER from that then when this started. Further, we are looking at a growing list of misconduct, investigation, charges, lying perjury by the factotums that have promissed that the “walls were going to close in”.

                  5. “that this idiot will issue a lawful order to nuke some country or another as a distraction, ”

                    Just because you say or beleive something does not make it true.
                    You constantly confuse beliefs with facts.

                    Worse the self contradiction in your views is troubling.

                    According to the left – we are supposed to risk nuclear confrontation with Russia – because someone must be blamed because clinton lost.
                    At the same time NK which is nearer to peace with the world than it has been in 65 years – that you think Trump is preparing to unilaterally nuke ?

                    Please some actual evidence that Trump is a dangerous warm monger ?

                    Has he started any new wars ? Obama started two!
                    Has he invaded any countries ?

                    Trump seems to be trying to get us OUT of conflicts Bush and Obama got us into, not start new ones.

                2. “Your problem in understanding this is that you think your fantasies about Trump are real. They are not, except between your ears.”

                  True but the problem is bigger, the problem is that the left does not understand that reality and what they want to be true are not exactly the same thing.

                  Whether the mueller probe is legitimate – it is increasingly obvious it is not,
                  it is near certain that a Special Counsel is going to bag someone. for something.

                  There was a very interesting examination of the Libby/Fitzgerald investigation recently – because it characterizes Comey and because it reflects the predetermined outcome of an SC.

                  Fitzgerald was appointed by then deputy AG Comey – because Ashcrofft was conflicted.
                  Fitzgerald and Comey are friends – just as Comey and Mueller are.

                  PRIOR to appointing Fitzgerald:
                  Armitage had come forward and revealed he was the inadvertant source of the leak.
                  The CIA had noted that Plame was already a public employee of the CIA and therefore the law could not have been violated.

                  Put simply Comey appointed Fitzgerald to investigate a crime that did not exist.

                  It is further noted that Fitzgerald Hounded Judith Miller until she reversed her testimony – which is what allowed Fitzgerald to prosecute Libby, and that subsequently Miller recanted – which the courts relied on the unanimously restore Libby’s bar license.

                  1. JS re: “True but the problem is bigger, the problem is that the left does not understand that reality and what they want to be true are not exactly the same thing.”

                    Don’t lump all the lefties together please. Progressives are not DNC cultists. More people are getting off the plantation and calling them out on their sh!t

                    1. “Progressives are not DNC cultists. ”

                      Absolutely !

                      The former are far more dangerous than the latter.

                      The DNC cultists are merely corrupt left leaning politicians more interested in power than ideology.
                      They have good rough equivalents on the right and are really indistinguishable.

                      Progressives are selling an ideology that has resulted in copious bloodshed everywhere it has been tried.

                    2. John Say – former Progressive and Bernite H.A. Goodman is now no longer a progressive and is voting for Trump in 2020.

                3. I saw the Pences sit down and fold their arms when the Korean team took the ice. Ms. Jong gave the American team a standing ovation. No fantasy here. It made the US look bad. That’s just one reason I have no respect for Karen Pence. The olympians were just kids, but the Pences decided to politicize the womens hockey event. They couldn’t even be good sports. They don’t represent my values or those of most Americans. Wht did they even go to the Olympics in the first place? Free publicity?

                  Trump consistently polls low. The only fantasy is the drivel spouted by Fox News.

                  1. Your entitled to your own perceptions regarding Pence – I am not a fan.

                    The olympics should not be a political battleground, but they inevitably are.

                    Trumps polling from the election to the present has nearly exactly matched Obama’s. It is rare that on a weekly basis they are more than 4 points different. At the moment Trump is 1 pt above where Obama was at the same time.

                    That is one factor out of many that suggest that democrats may do well in the 2018 election – as the GOP did in 2010.

    1. BUT…BUT….The republicans house investigations said NO COLLUSION. They released it and found nothing. They also said the Trump was a stable genius and the most honest person on the planet. Oh, and that as far as they can tell he does not speak Russian….so there, case closed.

  2. Yesterday’s Trump Tirade will go down as one of the more memorable moments in broadcast history because it will help bring him down. The recording of this incident will be played when he is impeached, and in retrospective pieces down the road. You had the 3 Fox talking heads sitting there, spellbound by Trump’s stream of consciousness babbling, admitting that Cohen was his lawyer, admitting that he knew about the Stormy Daniels matter, and someone in the control room yelling into their headsets and/or gesturing to cut him off. If this were a world bound by reality, no television newscaster would ever just cut off the President of the United States, but this is Fox and Trump, so we’re in an alternate reality with alternative facts. Fox exists to stroke Trump’s ego and feed red meat to his base, and Trump was blowing it, big time. Ironically, Fox was the instrument of his own self-destruction.

    The upshot is that you have Fox trying to save Donald from himself. One of them said they were sure he had a “million” things to do, and then claimed they were “out of time”, which everyone knew was a lie, so they went to commercial. It was both sad and funny at the same time. Trump certainly had no awareness of how he was hurting his own cause, and still probably doesn’t even realize how badly he did because no one tells the emperor he is naked.

    1. One could see the tension in their faces as Trump babbled on. I wish I could have heard their private comments ‘after’ the show.

    2. Thanks for the wish-casting. It’s been… oh, you know the drill.

  3. My thanks to Professor Turley for addressing Trump’s denial. In my opinion this was one of yesterday’s most significant stories. But it competed with other big stories for coverage.

    There have been many questions raised on this thread regarding the credibility of James Comey and Andrew McCabe. But Trump’s call to “Fox & Friends” yesterday reminded us this President is a habitual liar. Had I been a Trump defender, yesterday would have been the jumping-off point.

    1. It was more an unhinged tirade than a telephone call. And Fox is in his corner!

    1. I have a suspicion Mr. Trump and his lawyers have sense to no take legal advice from Prof. Turley.

  4. Johnathan Turley is Comey’s professor. He supported Trump until Comey was fired. Now he wants us to trust his opinions? Johnny is a Democrat and he is pushing the agenda. President Trump has done more in one year with Mueller around his neck, than any other Democrat Presidents combined! Turley used to practice constitutional law, now he opines on no freedom of speech for President Trump. Why? He is a socialist democrat operative!

    1. Donald, is that you?

      You forgot to add: “Fake news, believe me, the best brain.”

    2. Excellent! Just keep whistlin’ past the graveyard, deano. On the bright side, however, you likely got today’s Pravda Faux News talking points regurgitated perfectly.

      this is to “I have a ‘Hannity was here’ tattoo across my lower back” deano

  5. When Mr. Cohen professed that he was willing to “take a bullet” for Mr. Trump, I do not believe he envisaged that the President would be wielding the gun. But that is precisely what has happened here.

    I sometimes joke that my criminal defense practice is limited to the representation of relatives, but as a civil litigator, I knew that Mr. Cohen had determined to invoke the Fifth Amendment the moment word came that he was dismissing his pending defamation actions. The reason is that the plaintiff in a civil case cannot pursue his claim and simultaneously assert the privilege against self-incrimination on issues relating to that claim. The defamation suits are gone for good.

    But in addition to undermining his sometime attorney’s attorney-client privilege claims, Mr. Trump’s comments implicitly allege that Mr. Cohen has committed malpractice and violated a number of ethical rules. This is because while acknowledging for the first time that Mr. Cohen represented him during the “crazy Stormy Daniels deal,” he had previously publicly denied any knowledge of the settlement agreement or the payment made to Ms. Daniels, which is another way of saying that Mr. Cohen negotiated the deal and paid the money without his client’s consent.

    What this all means is that Mr. Cohen cannot rely on loyalty, or a presidential pardon, to extricate him from the legal mess.

  6. During Brett Baier’s interview with James Comey this exchange took place:

    Off the bat, Baier asked Comey if it was true that the FBI decided before they had even interviewed her not to pursue charges against Hillary Clinton for sharing classified information on a private, unsecured e-mail server.

    Comey vehemently denied this claim, but when Baier pushed the former FBI director on the matter, he said it seemed unlikely well before they interviewed Clinton that it would end in a case that prosecutors at the DOJ would bring forward.

    Later in the interview this exchange:

    Baier asked Comey if there’s anything Clinton could have said or done in the interview that would’ve gotten the agency to pursue a case against her. Comey said if she had lied. Baier then played a video of Comey testifying before Congress under oath that Clinton had lied to the public about facts pertaining to her e-mails. Comey said these lies were unimportant because they were told to the American people and the press, not to law enforcement.

    “The question is, would she lie to us,” Comey said (emphasis added). “What people say in the public forum, in a debate, or in a political campaign is not our business. Our business is ‘Are you going to lie to us?’ And if you are and we can prove it, then we’re going to prosecute you.”

    So why wouldn’t the FBI interview Clinton, who they knew has lied to the public, to see if she would also lie to the FBI? Well duh, they would then have to refer for prosecution the Democrat candidate for President to an AG and Justice Department that would then have to ignore the obvious or blow that candidates Victory Funded party. And as Comey already stated, it seemed unlikely…that it would end in a case that prosecutors at the DOJ would bring forward.

    So there’s that. Lawfare 101

    http://thefederalist.com/2018/04/27/watch-fox-newss-bret-baier-eviscerate-james-comey-live-tv/?utm_source=The+Federalist+List&utm_campaign=65c9930e4a-RSS_The_Federalist_Daily_Updates_w_Transom&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_cfcb868ceb-65c9930e4a-79248369

    1. Olly: stop the Kellyanne pivoting. Trump is the President. Nothing HRC, Comey, McCabe or anyone else did or didn’t do is relevant to the issues surrounding him, and nothing she or anyone else ever did or didn’t do exonerates him.. Trump is an habitual, pathological liar. He is indeed is own worst enemy. Really, no one needs to bring him down because he is bringing himself down. Yesterday, he shot himself in the head by admitting that Cohen was representing him in the Stormy Daniels matter. This was after lying to a reporter who asked him whether he knew abut the payment. Trump denied it.

  7. The majority of legal work involves business dealings. Law schools recognize that by having mandatory first-year courses in Contracts and Property. My law school also required Tax Law. And handling a “tiny amount” of Trump’s legal work would keep any lawyer busy, as his real estate and business dealings are vast, as well as his personal legal entanglements. I don’t think it’s in Trump’s interest to publicly distance himself from Cohen, unless, of course, he has nothing to hide. Otherwise, he should support Cohen, in hopes the guy keeps his mouth shut in expectation of a pardon.

  8. While Trump’s statements are unwise the SDNYC’s argument is spurious.

    Priviledge applies regardless of the inconsistent public utterances of the client.

    1. I’ve had lawyers tell me that clients are usually their worst enemies. And yesterday Trump confirmed that in the most public way possibly. It’s almost like Trump bought airtime to advertise his lack of honesty.

      John, explain to me why anyone should defend Trump at this point. Not only is he a liar but a terribly liar at that!

      1. Why were democrats EVER defending Bill Clinton ? Why were Democrats actually voting for Hillary ?
        Why did democrats Vote for Obama – who has a long record of lying about things of actual substance ?

        Regardless, you have to define “defend Trump”

        There is absolutely nothing that has arrisen regarding Trump that is actually new since the election.

        Whatever you think of his integrity – it is not arguably different than it was pre-election.

        Part of the problem with the lefts entire post election attack on Trump is that the gist of it is “See President Trump is same person we hated when he was Candidate Trump” – that is not a winning argument.

        The public perception that the Trump/Russia investigation was a corrupt political setup orchestrated by Clinton with the corrupt cooperation of the Obama administration is growing rapidly.
        Trumps surrogates are not flipping on each other or him. But those involved in the election are.

      2. Because I care FAR more about the criminal abuse of power and political corruption of the obama administration that is being exposed than Trump’s Tweets.

        It is almost 2 years since this investigation began – and the well remains dry.
        That increasingly means not only was there nothing there – but those persuing it KNEW that at the begining. That makes this all corrupt.

        We know know that there were 3 different parts to the FISA warrant. We have 4 different things that could make those parts and every one of them ties back to Clinton. Everyone is an outside of normal process feed into the FBI investigation.
        We also know that FVEY has asserted they provided NO intelligence regarding Trump/Russia. That means there is nothing from the Intelligence community.
        It appears now that Clapper and Brennan orchestrated Comey briefing Trump on the Steele Dossier deliberately to provoke a news story, and Clapper leaked the meeting to the media and lied under oath about it.

        These are things that matter more to me.

        Lawrence Tribe has a book out “to end a presidency” – I have not read the book, but the title reflects the problem – it is way to easy to read “by any means necescary” on to the end.
        And the left is pretty open they beleive that.

        1. I imagine that the federal grand jury which issued the indictments as well as the defendants who have already pleaded guilty don’t agree that the “well was dry.”

          this is to “Hannity is my truth whisperer” johnnie

          1. Marky Mark Mark – do you actually know how a grand jury votes? And how many votes it takes for a true bill?

              1. Diane – he had about a 50/50 shot to begin with. Let’s see if he appeals.

                1. As I understand the legal strategy was not even about winning.
                  Merely raising the issue is expected to have an effect on the proceedings.

            1. Excerpted from the article linked above:

              But U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said that a civil case is an inappropriate way to challenge a prosecutor’s actions.

              “It is a sound and well-established principle that a court should not exercise its equitable powers to interfere with or enjoin an ongoing criminal investigation when the defendant will have the opportunity to challenge any defects in the prosecution in the trial court or on direct appeal,” the 24-page ruling says.

          2. They pleaded guilty to process crimes, Marky Mark. This isn’t that difficult.

          3. “I imagine that the federal grand jury which issued the indictments as well as the defendants who have already pleaded guilty don’t agree that the “well was dry.””

            There has been no guilty plea and no indictment having anything to do with the purported purpose of the investigation.

            Frankly the indictments of Manafort are proof that you can get a Grand Jury to indict a ham sandwhich.

            Mueller has an indictment of a crime that does not exist in the US criminal code, and persuaded a GJ to indict on money laundering for legally obtained money.

            It is possible there are actual crimes in Manafort’s conduct. But most of those alleged by Mueller in the first indictment are either not crimes or not founded based on the evidence.
            So much for the credibility of Mueller or the grand jury.

            This is not being strongly dealt with – because Manafort is unappealing.
            But the rule of law requires the unappealing to get the same rights and due process and lack of bias as the rest of us.

            Unless you are on the left, where there is no rule of law and criminality is decided based on who you like or don’t.

    2. John, utterances of the client can be evidence as to the nature of the relationship and whether it qualifies for the protection afforded to communications between an attorney and a client. Such utterances can also be evidence as to whether legal representation, if there was such, was obtained to further criminal activity which can render otherwise protected communications discoverable.

      1. “John, utterances of the client can be evidence as to the nature of the relationship and whether it qualifies for the protection afforded to communications between an attorney and a client. Such utterances can also be evidence as to whether legal representation, if there was such, was obtained to further criminal activity which can render otherwise protected communications discoverable.”

        While you are correct – it is still the actual relationship that matters, not the utterances.
        Trump has already established that Cohen represented him.
        Trump’s communications with Cohen are therefore priviledged.
        Further the priviledge is presumed.

        The SDNYC does not get to look through Trump’s communications with Cohen and say – this is priviledged, that is not – not unless in there warrant they specifically asserted that some exception such as the crime fraud exception applied – and to get a proper warrant on that basis, they would have to PROVE the basis for the exception to get the warrant.

        Warrants are not circular – you can not conduct a search in order to get the evidence to provide the basis for the search.

        There is absolutely no version of the reporting on the Daniels matter that properly alleges a crime.
        WE still do not know what is in the SDNYC warrant. But given the crappy nature of the warrants regarding Trump thus far, my expectation would be a ludicrously stupid and overly broad interpretation probably of campaign finance law that would not fly anywhere but SDNYC or maybe California.

        That is a very stupid game for federal prosecutors – particularly given that 84M in improper campaign donations to the Clinton campaign have recently been exposed.

        Further we have had actual past instances where actual campaign funds were used to by the silence of a sex partner. There has never been a successful prosecution.

        The left does not seem to grasp that if they wish to “get Trump” they must come up with something that the majority of Trump supporters care about. Otherwise the message that all of the country right of Clinton is getting a message that there are two sets of law in this country – one for the left, and one for the rest of us. That is a very very dangerous place to be. Republicans were unable to take down clinton – even though they had actual obstruction of justice, as well as lying under oath.

      2. Alot is being made about the poor job Trump did on Fox,
        Maybe so. But I would note that after words Judge Woods granted the request for a special master, which she had been skeptical of before.

        I have not heard anyone consider the possibility that Trump deliberately connected himself to the Daniels case – but in the vaguest way possible, to protect Cohen.

        Absent an allegation in the warrant application of a crime involving Cohen’s handling of Daniels AND an allegation that Trump was a party to the crime, Trump has just assured that much of the information regarding Daniels is now priviledged. And he may have forced the appointment of a special master rather than an FBI Taint team which is an excellent outcome for Cohen.

        1. You may want to sit down; I have something to tell you, and it’s going to make you very sad…You see, in the real world, federal grand juries, petit juries, and judges don’t make their decisions based on the latest misinformation-laden, hysterical screeching of Hannity or his ilk. They make decisions based on facts. Unfortunately for you, and other gullible rubes and dupes like you, when the real world collides with your make-believe “alternative facts” universe, the real world wins every, single, time. So sorry for your loss.

          this is to “but, but, hannity sounded so much like he knew what he was talking about” johnnie

          1. Marky Mark Mark – you have never been on a jury of any type, have you? It would do you a world of good. It would actually help your clients. Juries make their decision within the first 4 hours of the trial. Regardless of what is shoveled at them, that does not change. Votes on juries can change overnight because someone looked up a definition in a dictionary (they are not supposed to do this, but they still do). Votes on juries change because they want to go home and see their husband (my personal favorite).

            BTW, grand juries only get spoon fed the minimal facts that the prosecutor wants to supply to get a true bill. Even then, the prosecutor only needs a majority vote to get that true bill.

            1. Juries make their decision within the first 4 hours of the trial.

              I think you mean ‘jurors’, not ‘juries’, and, no, some do change their opinion during longer deliberations.

              1. DSS – if you had read to the end, you would have seen I made that point, with examples. 😉

                1. No, you contended people change their opinion for frivolous reasons.

                    1. Yes, but your contention was that all decisions are made within the first four hours of the trial (for an example of a trial where this was not the case, read Shana Alexander’s summary of her juror interviews during Patty Hearst’s first trial) and that all changes of view after that were due to frivolous considerations or exhaustion. You did not offer this as a probablistic statement, but as a categorical one.

          2. Ignoring your complete misunderstanding of how Juries reach conclusions.

            What FACTS ?

            We have spent almost 2 years investigating a non-crime, with no FACTS to support it.

            You seem fixated on Hannity.
            I have no idea what Hannity has said. I do not watch Fox – particularly not Hannity.

            OF for some reason he is independently making the same observations I am that would bolster both our credibilty. True does not become false merely because it is uttered by Hitler (or Hannity).

            So in the Real World MM – what FACTS do you have ?

            Based on real world facts – what Crime has Cohen committed ?
            And absent a Crime – why is there a search warrant ?

            I am highly suspicious of significant overreach by the prosecutors – because that has been the pattern in this from the begining. That suspicion BTW is a REQUITEMENT of our criminal justice system – it is called the presumption of innocence.

            Conversely the left is certain Cohen has committed a crime – though what crime they can not specify.
            Even though search warrant require a crime to be alleged.
            The left is certain that said unspecified crime vitiates priviledge, and therefore all of Cohen’s records are therefore admissible.
            The left is certain that said records will provide the basis for the warrant
            Pretty much a bass ackwards understanding of the law, and a ludicrously obvious game of circular reasoning.

            Sorry MM – what Real World FACTS is it that you have ?

            We have all been waiting almost 2 years.

          3. I wish it were possible to get you wing nuts to see your own arguments as any rational person on the outside does.

            Virtually everything is fallacy.

            Appeals to authority.
            Ad Hominem
            tu quoque
            Post Hoc
            Ad Populum
            Appeal to ignorance
            ….

            Your recent post just drips with X is false because “Hannity”!.

            I do not like, I do not watch and I do not know what Hannity has said.
            In the event that some argument I have made has also been made by Hannity – that does not falsify it.
            Only an idiot would claim that.
            But idiots abound.

  9. Part of Trump’s appeal is that he is not careful about what he says. That is in large part what got him elected and those same Larry David say-too-much characteristics sometimes make life more difficult for him. In general, would rather have him saying too much than being too measured like a cliche polished politician.

  10. Turley wrote, “In the meantime, it was revealed yesterday that the FBI seized 16 different cellphones from Michael Cohen.”

    I know nothing about cell-phones. Somebody please tell me whether 16 different cell-phones can all have just one Twitter account. I ask because Cohen has previously offered his Twitter account as an alibi for the allegation that he visited Prague in 2016.

    1. I don’t think a Twitter account proves anything one way or another, regarding Cohen’s supposed visit to Prague. As I understand it, Cohen could have flown to anywhere else in the European Union, and then freely traveled to Prague without leaving any record of it – no border check.

      1. Thanks Jay S. I forgot to mention that the supposed alibi involved pictures of Cohen taken in various places that were not Prague at various times during which it was alleged he was in Prague. However, the timeline stated in the dossier is sufficiently broad that it could be wrong on the details and still be right on the general allegation.

        1. But the requirement for a warrant is that the information being used is reliable.

          That standard is not the same as Possible.

          If the allegation is so broad it is difficult to impossible to disprove – then it is not probable cause.

          One of the many problems that defenders of the dossier make is inverting the burden of proof.

          What is extremely disturbing about the FBI/DOJ and the dossier allegations is that not only are they “salacious and unverfied” but FBI appears to have never made any effort to verify them – and yet it used them to get a warrant.

          That is pretty much NOT what the 4th amendment requires.

          According to Gowdy who has actually seen the FISA Warrant – it has 3 sources.
          By far the largest is and the first is the Steele Dossier.

          The Yahoo news story – which we now know is just the steele dossier echo’s by the news is another.

          There is pretty strong inferences that the Downer allegations regarding Papadoulis are one.
          Those have worse problems than the Steele Dossier.

          We now know those did not come through Intelligence channels. The FVEY committee has confirmed not only that the Papadoulis story did not come through them. But that no Trump/Russia intelligence came through them.
          That BTW directly contradicts what Comey said in his Baier interview.
          Comey ALSO said that information from State was used.

          We know what came through State – the Shearer Dossier – which as not only a product of Sidney Blumenthal but a source for much of the Steele Dossier, and the Downer/Papadoulis story.

          So the likely – near certainly, every single thing in the FISA Warrant application is a product of the Clinton Campaign.

          So we have unverified and politically sourced materials making the entire basis of the investigation.

          As Trey Gowdy noted – you can start an investigation on this, almost anything can be used to open an investigation. But it is unconstitutional, unethical and possibly criminal to get a warrant based on this.

          1. It doesn’t seem to matter to Prof Turley that it’s unconstitutional, unethical and possibly criminal, at I’ve not seen him claim it’s a big concern of his.

          2. Tiara Boy said, “But the requirement for a warrant is that the information being used is reliable. That standard is not the same as Possible.”

            What warrant in the world are you blathering on about now, Tiara Boy??? The search warrant for Michael Cohen’s office, home and hotel room had nothing whatsoever to do with dossier allegation about Cohen visiting Prague. The FISA warrant on Carter Page had nothing whatsoever to do with the dossier allegation about Cohen visiting Prague. Try to keep up with what’s happening now, if you can. If you can’t, then by all means possible keep feeding me a daily supply of hare-brained non-sequiturs straight from rays beaming out of your tiara.

            1. The FISA Warrant that was based on the Steele Dossier that included the Claims regarding Cohen’s trip to Prague.

              “Fruit of the poisonous tree is a legal metaphor in the United States used to describe evidence that is obtained illegally.[1] The logic of the terminology is that if the source (the “tree”) of the evidence or evidence itself is tainted, then anything gained (the “fruit”) from it is tainted as well.”

              If the FISA Warrants that started this were improperly obtained the entire investigation is corrupt.

              1. There was no FISA warrant on Michael D. Cohen. Verifying that Cohen was in Prague in 2016 has nothing whatsoever to do with the FISA warrant on Carter Page. If it did, then the FBI would have to verify the urolagnia allegation against Trump in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page.

                1. “There was no FISA warrant on Michael D. Cohen.”
                  Correct, but the entire Mueller investigation and everything that flowed from it is branches of a Trunk that started with the DOJ/FBI and the Carter Page FISA warrant.

                  Per constitutional law – best expressed by Justice Frankfurter – an FDR appointee and former member of FDR’s “Braintrust” it is all fruit of the poisonous Tree.

                  If the FISA Warrant falls – nearly everything is discredited.

                  “Verifying that Cohen was in Prague in 2016 has nothing whatsoever to do with the FISA warrant on Carter Page. If it did, then the FBI would have to verify the urolagnia allegation against Trump in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page.”
                  Yes, the FBI would have to verify the the overwhelming majority of the claims in the Steele Dossier
                  Yes, that means the Cohen meeting and the pee incident.
                  The warrant could survive SOME being false but not many.
                  None of this is unusual. It is pretty standard law.
                  The Steele Dossier is a whole, it is credible as a whole or not.
                  Its credibility rests on that of the real sources – Not Christopher Steele.

                  Law enforcement can not go for a warrant and say – our informant was been wrong half the time in the past, but we beleive this time he is right.

                  The FBI/DOJ is not permitted to use unverified claims (nor is any law enforcement)

                  Trey Gowdy explained this fairly well recently – the FBI/DOJ are free to investigate any allegations they receive from any source. He WANTS them to do so. But they can not spy on, search or seize anything without meeting the requirments of the 4th amendment.
                  Probably cause that an actual crime has been committed.
                  Probable cause that the warrant will produce FURTHER evidence of that Crime.
                  A warrant that is specifc in what is to be searched and/or seized and that what is being searched is justified by the allegations.

                  Further not only must law enforcement have the things above it must SWEAR to the above.
                  Meaning that if Law enforcement knows it does not have the above and requests a warrant anyway, that is a sworn falsification. We are lax about prosecution bad warrants – there are lots of innocent reasons for error, or plenty of situations where things are too gray.
                  But that laxity decreases when the US AG and the DIR FBI are signing the warrants.
                  Comey has testified that the Steele Dossier is salacious and unverified.
                  That means he LIED when he signed off on any warrants – because he was SWEARING to the FISA court that the information supporting those warrants met the standard of PROBABLE Cause.
                  Salacious and unverified is NOT Probable cause.

                  Law is not poetry to be creatively interpreted.

                  SCOTUS led by Gorsuch just struck down a federal immigration law – as ambigious and over broad.
                  The rule of law – requires not merely playing by the rules, but playing by rules that are CLEAR.

                  There is no “this is the law for Trump, but this is the law for Obama”

            2. “The FISA warrant on Carter Page had nothing whatsoever to do with the dossier allegation about Cohen visiting Prague.”

              Bzzt wrong.

              The Steele Dossier was used to seek the FISA warrant – and to start the investigation.
              If the overwhelming majority of the verifiable facts supporting ALL the allegations in the Steele Dossier were not verified AT THE TIME the warrant was applied for, the warrant is invalid, the investigation is invalid, and everything that followed was politically and criminally corrupt.

              The Steele Dossier claims Cohen traveled to Prague in the period from late August to September.
              If any part of that is false the Steele Dossier becomes substantially weaker.

              Worse we are Ex Post Facto almost 2 years later doing what FBI was required to do a priori.

            3. Non-sequitur – it does not follow.

              The core problem of the entire investigation – there is no foundation – everything that has subsequently occured can not legitimately follow.

              The logic problem is yours.

      2. Once more with feeling. He needs a passport to enter the Schengen Area. New York is not in the Schengen Area. This is not that difficult.

        1. Excerpted from the Wikipedia article on Leandro P. “Lee” Rizzuto:

          On January 5, 2018, President Donald Trump appointed his son Leandro Rizzuto Jr., to the position of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States to Barbados, as well as St. Kitts and Nevis and Saint Lucia.

          1. That so-and-so has been granted a minor diplomatic post still would not relieve Cohen of the need for a passport in order to travel to Europe.

            1. Rizzuto owns Beauty Central LLC. Beauty Central has several private jets.

              1. Private aircraft charters have to match their passengers to the flight manifest before departure and again upon arrival. However, visa stamps and passport stamps are not necessarily required so long as the passenger matches the flight manifest.

            2. Much of this demonstrates the logical fraud that is the left.

              The burden of proof is on those claiming this did happen.

              Absolutely, it is possible that Cohen – who had no reason to beleive he was being tracked at the time, to figure out some way to get from NYC to Prague without passport stamps.
              That does nto mean it would be easy, further it can not be done without involving a number of other people, who all become liabilities if he is trying to hide this.

              Lets say he takes a private plane – there are people in the terminals at either end who would have seen him, the pilot and the crew of the plane. All of these people would have incentives to come forward.

              What we know is that there does not exist any evidence that Cohen went to Prague.
              The burden of proof is on those who claim he did – not to demonstrate increasingly unlikely ways he might have, but to demonstrate that he did.

              It is not Cohen’s or anyone else’s responsibility to disprove each increasingly unlikely hypothetical.

      1. Excerpted from the article linked above:

        But I can tell you exclusively that Cohen lied. Sources tell me that Maureen van Zandt, Steve’s wife, has confirmed that even though she was in Rome with her husband at the time for work, they know nothing about Cohen or his statement. They weren’t in Capri.

        Cormier wrote: Cohen, 50, said he understands the scrutiny this will bring. He said credit card receipts would prove he stayed in Capri, an island off the Italian coast, but he declined to make those receipts available. Cohen was with family and friends, he said, including the musician and actor Steve Van Zandt. Van Zandt did not immediately return an email seeking comment.

        But it’s not true. It’s a total lie. The source confirms: “The E Street band did play in Rome July 16, 2016. But there was no trip to Capri. The band stayed in Rome a few days after the show until the band had to travel to the next gig. The van Zandts never left the city.”

        1. You do not seem to understand – you have the reported claiming that Cohen lied generally.

          What he says that his sources said if they said it – which is frequently a problem with anti-trump stories is that the purported sources either do not exist or did not say what the reporter claims.

          But assuming they did. The ONLY contradiction is that Cohen may not have been with Van Zandt.
          Cohen said he traveled to Italy. and stayed at Capri. He did not identify where in Italy he met with who.

          Finally the press is all over the place on this.

          According to the stories about Mueller purportedly having proof – the Trump to Prague purportedly took place in late august through Late September – likely Late September – not July.

          Where Cohen was in July is irrelevant.

          This is part of the nonsense of inverting the burden of proof.

          You can not prove that a broad vague claim from the Dossier is credible by demonstrating that Cohen might not have an alibi for one small period in the vague claim.

          To be considered reliable information must be specific enough to be verified – and it is not the targets responsibility to prove it wrong.

          You do not win in Clue when you assert that Prof. plum killed Ms. Scarlet in the dining room with a knife
          when Col Mustard killed Mrs. White in the kitchen with a rope.
          The fact that both include a murder does not make the first reliable.

        2. Sources tell me

          You’ll eat any sh!t sandwich, which is your problem

      1. So unless you have a 2nd passport – which is actually hard to get, and though I know Lefties like to presume the implausible to be certain, is still highly unlikely,

        You have serious problems, The July trump to italy does not fit the required time frame for the Trump to Prague. Not only doesn’t it correspond to the Dossier, but the purported purpose of the Trip does nto fit the known facts. Cohen is purportedly traveling to Prague in early july to fix problems that have not yet occured.

        1. Excerpted from the Buzzfeed article linked above:

          The stamps indicate he traveled abroad at least four times in 2016: twice to London [once in October and once in November], once to St. Maarten [in January], and once to Italy in July.

          Tiara Boy blathered, “The July [trip] to Italy does not fit the required time frame for the [trip] to Prague.”

          Tiara Boy had previously blathered, “the [trip] to Prague purportedly took place in late August through late September – likely late September – not July.”

          What ‘required time frame’ in the world are you dithering over now, Tiara Boy??? Cohen’s passport has him visiting London once in October, 2016, for his daughter’s birthday, which was before the election in 2016 and a second time in November, 2016, for thanksgiving, which was after the election.

          Consider Cohen’s October visit to London. The dossier need not be correct on the late August through late September time frame in order to be correct on Cohen visiting Prague. For that matter, the dossier need not be correct about Cohen visiting Prague in order to be correct about Cohen visiting The Czech Republic. Finally, the dossier need not be correct about Cohen visiting The Czech Republic in order to be correct about Cohen meeting with Russian intelligence operatives.

          Now don’t freak out, Tiara Boy. The question is whether Cohen’s passport establishes an alibi for Cohen. Cohen has not been charged with a crime. If Cohen were someday charged with, say, conspiracy to hack and leak, for instance, then the question of Cohen’s alibi would, indeed, be subject to intense scrutiny as a matter of law. But we’re not there yet. And this is a blawg–not a court of law, anyway. Cohen faces no legal jeopardy from L4D. Count your blessings, Tiara Boy.

          1. The purpose of demonstrating a Trip by Cohen to Prague is to “verify” the Steele Dossier.

            If Cohen actually traveled to Prague in 2014 – that would provide ZERO verification of the Steele Dossier.
            Further an early July Trump does not fit the timeline or the purported purpose of the trip.

            Thus far no one has put Cohen in Prague in early July 2016.
            But even in the unlikely event they could it would not help the Trump/Russia Collusion narative.

            You seem to be under the delusion that any possibility that Cohen might aver have been able to get to Prague is sufficient.

            It is not.

            If an informant says – I witness Jim do a coke deal Sept 25 at 9am, and Jim was in another state on Sept. 25 at 9am. The informant is unreliable and can not be used to secure a warrant.

            The Steele Dossier specifies a time frame, a purpose, as well as specific people that were met for the Prague trip. Disproving ANY elements substantialy undermines the dossier.

            Absent substantial verification the Steele Dossier does not constitute probable cause necescary to get a warrant. The failure of the DOJ/FBI to verify the Steele Dossier before using it is a serious violation of Carter Page and Paul Manafort’s constitutional rights.
            It is also a sworn falsification – a crime.

            You do not seem to grasp that the constitution prevents general warrants, and the government spying on citizens because it feels like it.

            1. You are experiencing extreme difficulty with the very concept of relevance, Tiara Boy. It was no more necessary for the FBI to verify the urolagnia allegation in the Trump-Russia dossier in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page than it was for the FBI to verify the Cohen/Prague allegation in the Trump-Russia dossier in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page. All that the FBI had to verify from the Trump-Russia dossier in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page were the portions of the Trump-Russia dossier that refer to Carter Page. I’m beginning to suspect that the light is no longer lit in your torch, Tiara Boy.

              1. Diane – Carter Page was an FBI informant for which they did not require a FISA warrant. The FBI/DOJ wanted that 2 hop ability to get to Trump.

              2. “It was no more necessary for the FBI to verify the urolagnia allegation in the Trump-Russia dossier in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page than it was for the FBI to verify the Cohen/Prague allegation in the Trump-Russia dossier in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page. All that the FBI had to verify from the Trump-Russia dossier in order to get a FISA warrant on Carter Page were the portions of the Trump-Russia dossier that refer to Carter Page”

                Bzzt wrong.
                1) large portions of the Steele Dossier were offered to the FISA court in support of the warrant.
                Those all must be verified.
                2). The Warrant was rooted in an allegation not merely about Page, but about Campaign Collusion with Russia
                Everything related to Russia/Collusion must be verified or none of it can be used.
                This is important – because alleging that Page traveled to Russia and met with people with indirect ties to the Russian government is NOT sufficient for a warrant on a US citizen.
                You must allege the larger conspiracy or you do not have a crime.
                You can not just manufacture a motive from thin air. The remaining claims in the Dossier are the basis for claiming Page was not meeting an oil executive about oil, but about criminal acts.

                If I say – even prove that L4D met with Exxon Execs to Plot price fixing, that is not enough for a warrant.
                How am I sure L4D met about price fixing, rather than say reducing pollution ?
                You have to more than Allege a crime – you have to have probable cause of a crime.
                That is more than two people in the oil industry meeting.

                Most of the Steele Dossier was necescary for that.

                3). The Urolangnia was required as that is the basis for the claim that Trump is compromised.
                That is part of the basis for the warrant, and therefore much be verified

                4). If you come in to the FBI and say

                Kissinger is planing to bomb the golden gate bridge,.
                Albright is planning to shoot up Times square
                and Joe Doe is planning on hacking the DNC.

                That will not get you a warrant.
                First the first two claims are FALSE and therefore you credibility is GONE.
                Second the DNC hacking allegation is just an allegation, it is not probable cause.

                The Steele Dossier is a whole.
                While every allegation need not be true
                A super majority must be,
                and everything that can be verified must be.

          2. “The dossier need not be correct on the late August through late September time frame”

            Bzzt, Wrong – yes it does, atleast to be used as probable cause to get a warrant.

            Col Mustard Killed Prof Plum in the dining room with a Candle Stick is not the same as Ms. White Killed Mr. Pickering in the kitchen with a knife.

            To be used as the basis for a warrant the Steele Dossier has to have as many details verified as possible.
            and no detail can be significantly off.

            Further there is the separate issue that the purported Trip to Prague had several purposes,
            Several of those purposes could not take place until shortly AFTER the DNC Emails were published,
            That occured in late July AFTER Cohen returned from Italy.

            The late August through September time frame is not arbitraty. It must fit with the alegations regarding the trip/meeting.

            As an example lets say Cohen is lying about going to Prague – but he did so to illegally buy antique persian carpets.

            Even if he traveled at exactly the right time to exactly the right place – if he did not meet the people alleged, nor do what was alleged – the Steele Dossier would still be discredited.

            The details matter. Particularly those details that were not publicly known. Details that prove the source for the Dossier actually witnessed some part of the events being used as evidence.

            If the Steele Dossier says Cohen traveled to Prague on Aug. 27 2016 and that proves absolutely true.
            That still is not probable cause. It is the WHY Cohen traveled to Prague that is asserted by the Steele Dossier that matters. If the Steele dossier is not very accurate about the who, when, and where, then its claims about why are not probable cause.

            1. The Trump-Russia dossier had nothing whatsoever to do with the search warrant for Cohen’s office, home and hotel room. That’s the only warrant that could possibly be relevant to the subject of Michael D. Cohen. Perhaps you should try thinking without your tiara on.

              1. “The Trump-Russia dossier had nothing whatsoever to do with the search warrant for Cohen’s office, home and hotel room. That’s the only warrant that could possibly be relevant to the subject of Michael D. Cohen. Perhaps you should try thinking without your tiara on.”

                Bzzt wrong. Again Read
                Justice Felix Frankfurter in Nardone v. United States (1939).

                Regardless, it has been alleged – by the left, that the Steele Dossier was used in the Cohen Warrant.

          3. “the dossier need not be correct about Cohen visiting The Czech Republic in order to be correct about Cohen meeting with Russian intelligence operatives.”

            True, but it is the Steele Dossier’s accuracy about when, and where, that allows us to trust the parts we can not verify – the who and why. It is the who and why that are probable cause of a crime – but they are only credible enough to issue a warrant if the when and where are correct.

            Further NONE of this is verified. If you could actually establish as a FACT that Cohen met Russian Intelligence operatives for the purposes alleged – that would be sufficient – even if you were actually wrong about where and when.

            But an allegation is not a fact. An allegation is not credible or reliable merely because it has been made.
            An allegation is not credible or reliable merely because it has not been disproven – particularly when little or no effort has been made to prove it.

            If I say that I have some hearsay source thrice removed that says you kiddie diddled little Tommy in the basement on Aug. 24th 2017

            That is not the basis for a warrant.
            BUT if I can place you and tommy in the basement on Aug 24 2017 MAYBE I can get a warrant.

            Placing you and Tommy in the basement in July will not get me a Warrant.

            1. Tiara Boy said, “If you could actually establish as a FACT that Cohen met Russian Intelligence operatives for the purposes alleged – that would be sufficient – even if you were actually wrong about where and when.”

              Indeed. That would be sufficient to charge Cohen with a crime. Wouldn’t it? So what does that have to do with all of your blather about a warrant? A warrant for whom? Cohen? Or somebody else besides Cohen? You had better not be asserting that the FBI has to prove someone guilty of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt before the FBI can establish probable cause for a warrant to search for evidence of that same crime.

              1. “If you could actually establish as a FACT that Cohen met Russian Intelligence operatives for the purposes alleged – that would be sufficient – even if you were actually wrong about where and when.”

                a FACT is not the same as speculation. That would be “beyond a reasonable doubt”.
                Yes, if you have that – or even slightly less, you can just arrest Cohen.

                That has not occured – therefore you do NOT have proof that Cohen met with intelligence operatives for the purposes alleged.

                Therefore you must meet the requirements for a Warrant.
                The evidence thus far strongly suggests that has not been done.
                That has a name – prosecutorial misconduct.
                That tanks cases.

                “You had better not be asserting that the FBI has to prove someone guilty of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt before the FBI can establish probable cause for a warrant to search for evidence of that same crime.”

                Apparently you can not read.
                You can meet the probable cause standard – which means the sources must be verified
                OR
                If you have beyond a reasonable doubt proof that the crime has been committed you can go straight to arrest – even if some of your sources are “gamey”

          4. Now don’t freak out, Tiara Boy. The question is whether Cohen’s passport establishes an alibi for Cohen

            Bzzt, wrong. The ONLY question is does the Steele Dossier establish probable cause necescary for a Warrant.

            Absent that this entire investigation becomes criminally politically corrupt.

            Further even if by some miracle you validate the Steele Dossier ex post facto – that is not enough.
            The FBI had to have sufficiently verified it to meet the standard of probable cause in July 2016 when they used it to get a warrant.

            But even today – there is insufficient corraboration of ANY of the Steele dossier to constitute probable cause.
            While the actual standard would require almost everything in the Steele Dossier that could possibly be verified to be verified BEFORE granting the warrant.
            And very very little of it to be wrong.

            Facts proven at the time creat probably cause that allegations are true

            More allegations do not veriffy allegations.

            If 20% of the verifiable assertions in the Steele Dossier were false – the Dossier is not sufficiently credible to constitute probable cause

            The specificity of the claims is also relevant – If a meeting is alleged to have occurred on Dec. 15, 2015 and you can place the purported participants in the same place on Dec. !5, 2015 AND that is not public knowledge, then you have supported that allegation with signific credibility.

            If the allegation is “sometime in Septembey” even if proven right, it is only weak support.
            It the allegation is “Sometime in September” and you establish that It was only possible in early July – that discredits the allegation.

            “And this is a blawg–not a court of law”

            The validity of the FISA Warrant is a question of facts and law. Not opinion.

            This is not about Cohen as much as you wish to make it so.

            It is about using “salacious and unverified” allegations to get a warrant.

            The left is trying to ex post facto verify them.

            The requirement for a warrant is a priori verification.
            But the continued inability to verify is damning.

            1. Tiara Boy said again, “Bzzt, wrong. The ONLY question is does the Steele Dossier establish probable cause necescary for a Warrant.”

              A warrant for whom?

              1. “A warrant for whom?” – there are no arrest warrants, we are talking about search warrants.

                The FISA warrants for Carter Page and Paul Manafort are the root of this investigation.
                Everything else flows from them. If they are invalid, The entire investigation is at risk – and that would include Cohen.

                It is not the slightest unusual for procedural errors at the start of an investigation to contaminate the entire investigation.
                I beleive every single Iran Contra prosecution was thrown out – not because these guys were innocent, but because the investigation had a due process failure toward the begining.

                There are reasons for dotting I’s and Crossing T’s in criminal investigations.

                And Yes, I would like to know the details of the Cohen Warrant also.

                There is no publicly reported information indicating a crime.
                No probable cause that a crime has been committed and the search warrant itself will fall.

  11. A special master has been appointed to go through the materials and the judge has decided that Trump and Cohen have attorney-client privilege.

  12. The prolonged rant by Trump yesterday on Fox & Friends was painful to watch. Towards the end, the three Fox hosts looked like they wanted to run somewhere, anywhere, to end the segment. Some have speculated that Rupert himself called in to Fox, for them to terminate the phone call.

  13. Privilege is the same regardless of how much work you do for them. Trump has/had a team of lawyers who handled his business contracts, etc. and that would be the major part of his legal work.

  14. Trump added that he “has many attorneys … sadly, I have so many attorneys, you wouldn’t even believe it . . . From what I understand, [the feds are] looking at his businesses, and I hope he’s in great shape. I’m not involved, and I’ve been told I’m not involved.”

    A mega rich, lying, cheating, thieving, sack of sh*^; of course he needs lots of attorneys. Unfortunately not decent attorney will go near this train wreck.

    1. A mega rich, lying, cheating, thieving, sack of sh*^; of course he needs lots of attorneys.

      For sure. Because only the mega rich, lying, cheating, thieving, sacks of sh*^ in the lawfare party are blessed with being on offense and not defense.

    2. “A mega rich, lying, cheating, thieving, sack of sh*^; of course he needs lots of attorneys. Unfortunately not decent attorney will go near this train wreck.”

      Ad Hominem is not a substitute for argument.

    3. Isaac is only in TDS Stage 3 at this point –we can see in Isaac’s comments elsewhere on this blog that he has reached ‘acceptance’ that Trump will indeed finish his first term in office. Isaac is no longer talking about Trump being impeached or otherwise pushed out of office. Rather, Isaac has said that he hopes Trump will put his ego aside and ‘choose’ not to run for a second term. This is indicative of TDS Stage 3. For an example of what TDS Stage 4 looks like, see Maxine Waters, et al.

  15. Other comtradictions aside, and there are many, the fact that Cohen handled a tiny, tiny fraction of Trump’s legal work is not equivalent to “Trump’s legal work represented a tiny fraction of Cohen’s work”. Many on the media are implying they are equivalent.

    Secondly, everybody seems to be ignoring that Cohen was an EMPLOYEE OF THE TRUMP ORGANIZATION for the greater part of the last 12+ years. If some of the records seized cover that time period, there is likely to be incriminating evvidence there.

    1. We constantly get this garbage.

      As much as I hate to cite Comey’s disasterous interview with Baier.

      He made one remark regarding the “apparent’ contradiction between Lynch’s statements on his.
      The contradiction is only apparent – they can both be true.

      Many many of the lefts frothing at the mouth claims of liar, liar, liar!
      Are rooted in inconsistancies – not actual contradictions.

      Two things which appear to contradict, but do not necescarily

    2. Being an employee does not change attorney client priviledge.

      Alot is made of the crime fraud exception – but breaching priviledge based ont he crime fraud exception requires that the evidence of a crime that both the lawyer and the client are participating in must predate the warrant.

      You can not get a warrant, find what you need to breach priviledge in the priviledge material, and then assert there is no priviledge.

      The FBI/SDNYC is not going to see anything privilidged. That is why a special master has been appointed.

  16. For someone who demands total loyalty from all those with whom he deals, Trump displays a dangerous lack of insight about the troubles his own lack of loyalty can cause.

  17. Trump and his criminal syndicate hoist by their own petard. Couldn’t happen to a nicer shower. I feel sorry for the damage already wrought, and hope that it won’t cast an irrevocable pall. If it weren’t so serious, this would be slapstick hilarious, but even from the rainy shores of Scotland I feel no schadenfreude. There are too many wonderful Americans for that.

    1. Trump no longer needs Cohen as his fixer. Why? Because he has new fixers: the republican congress and Jeff Sessions. . So he’s flushing Cohen down the john.

      Will Cohen flip? Will Trump pardon? Coming soon: Godfather, Part IV.

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