Manafort Heads To D.C. With Eight Felonies . . . And An Increasingly Desperate Pardon Strategy

ManafortBelow is my column in The Hill newspaper on the implications of the conviction of Paul Manafort in Alexandria Virginia.  Notably, if President Donald Trump is inclined to pardon Manafort, he may want to do it before the approaching start of the D.C. trial.  The counts in the new trial are a true parade of horribles for Manafort and his image will hardly improve by the end. He will face details over his work for a blood-soaked authoritarian figure who fled into exile to Moscow.  It will be much more difficult to portray Manafort as a victim and a “good man” after that evidence is aired in open court.

I previously warned that Manafort’s obvious hung jury strategy was likely to fail.  He is now left with only his pardon strategy, though his lawyer ominously warned that he is considering “all of his options.”

The prosecutors from the Justice Department office of the special counsel left the courthouse in Alexandria on Tuesday with their first major conviction, given the eight guilty verdicts against Paul Manafort for bank and tax fraud out of the 18 counts he faced. For many observers, however, a reasonable question can be raised as to what all of this means.

This obviously is not the set of crimes that special counsel Robert Mueller was appointed to pursue. As noted by the openly skeptical trial judge in this case, Mueller clearly was pursuing President Trump and not these particular crimes. The question now is whether these convictions will further concentrate Manafort on flipping against Trump. If not, Mueller could be left looking like the guy who showed up at a bass fishing competition with a trophy deer head. It may be an impressive eight count buck of a defendant, but still is not the game he was supposed to catch.

Just as Manafort has some evaluations to make, so does Mueller, who has spent millions of dollars in pursuit of crimes outside the original mandate of misconduct related to the 2016 election and its aftermath. The question here is not why Manafort was prosecuted. He deserved to be prosecuted, and he now is rightfully labeled a felon. The question rather is who should have prosecuted Manafort and why.

There is an incoherent element to the case brought by the special counsel. Mueller transferred the investigation of former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen to the Southern District of New York despite those alleged crimes being related in part to the 2016 election. (In a surprise deal with prosecutors, Cohen pleaded guilty earlier in the day to eight counts of bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance violations). Yet, Mueller retained an array of financial crimes by Manafort that are far removed from the election. The only reason for this was to obtain leverage.

Mueller now has that leverage, however, he cannot offer what Manafort most wants, which is a walkaway. The benefit of the convictions is that Manafort is looking at a practical life sentence if sent to jail for a decade or more. However, Mueller is already under fire by a cooperating witness, George Papadopoulos, and his wife for what they view as unfair dealing, including a recent signal from the special counsel to the court that a six month sentence would be appropriate. Notably, attorney Alex van der Zwaan pleaded guilty to making false statements without cooperating with Mueller and received a 60 day sentence. The “deal” for Papadopoulos seems less than a bargain when compared to uncooperating witnesses, even with the differences in the context of their false statements.

It is highly unlikely that cooperation from Manafort would spare him from prison time in light of the sentences meted out to other defendants. Trump, however, could give Manafort precisely that benefit with a presidential pardon. Indeed, unlike Cohen, who could easily face state charges, the legal jeopardy for Manafort is more solidly based in federal claims that can be fully addressed in a pardon. Manafort thus far has been “all in” on that strategy. He has remained silent and loyal to Trump.

In contrast, Trump has been hit by a number of former close aides like Omarosa Manigault Newman and Cohen, who have actively sought to use their inside information against him. In a strange way, Omarosa and Cohen have improved the chances of a pardon for Manafort. Not only would such a pardon remove the leverage by Mueller from these convictions, it also would punish people like Cohen and former national security adviser Michael Flynn in seeking protection under Mueller.

While Manafort has openly preserved his position for a pardon, Trump has laid the foundation for it. As the likelihood of a conviction grew in Alexandria, Trump stepped up his public comments denouncing the prosecution and affirming the good character of Manafort, declaring, “I think it’s a sad day for our country.” He added, “He happens to be a very good person. I think it’s very sad what they have done to Paul Manafort.”

The “happy day” sought by Manafort is unlikely to be found in court or the office of the special counsel. He knows it only can come from the man who could brush aside all of these charges with the stroke of a pen. As for Trump, he could use a pardon to highlight the disconnect between the original mandate and the actual prosecutions that Mueller is pursuing. Trump could pardon Manafort for all crimes unrelated to the campaign or its aftermath, allowing Mueller to prosecute Manafort and anyone else for crimes tied to Russian interference with the 2016 election. Trump could then claim that he is not obstructing justice but rather doing what he has long demanded from Attorney General Jeff Sessions, which is to keep the special counsel focused on the primary purpose of the investigation and to finish that work without continued delays or more distractions.

Such a pardon by Trump would be a mistake. Indeed, these were not the crimes that Mueller was supposed to pursue, but that does not change the fact that Manafort remains a criminal. The Alexandria trial showcased how Manafort was becoming increasingly desperate over his declining income and opulent lifestyle. The Trump campaign may have been viewed as a way out of his financial and legal problems. A pardon would reward Manafort for such a calculated strategy. He could walk away from an array of financial crimes simply by using his personal connection to Trump.

Conventional wisdom holds that this prosecution was a clever play for leverage over a key potential witness. In the end, however, this move on Manafort could prove to be a serious miscalculation. By not transferring the financial crimes to the local district attorney, Mueller gave Manafort a better chance for a pardon by making himself part of the calculation.

If Mueller had transferred the case, he still would have had the leverage from any conviction but would not have given Trump the rationale for issuing a pardon as a way of confirming what Trump portrays as a runaway federal investigation. In such a scenario, Manafort ultimately would emerge as the only true winner, not because of his innocence, but because of his associations. If that windfall scenario plays out for Manafort, the man he may want to thank is not Trump but Mueller.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

205 thoughts on “Manafort Heads To D.C. With Eight Felonies . . . And An Increasingly Desperate Pardon Strategy”

  1. As for Mitch McCollum if we can’t get a party leader in the congress we can get a new party and do some walking of our own. NUKE THEM or explain to us why you don’t put socialist sticker on your lapel standing for RINO.

    and for the token on The Five. Your flip uncaring attitude does not account for hundreds killed in Texas alone and 6,000 sexual assaults ALL BY ILLEGALs. Get a life Juan are you sure you are a US Citizen and not an illegal Panamanian?

    If not start being a US Citizen

  2. Trump is now saying the mob stuff out loud. This is one of many reasons why having a Special Counsel whose team has some experts in international organized crime was and is essential.

    Mueller’s approval rating has jumped 11 points in the last month according to a fake news, witch hunt, communist news organiza…. Oh, wait, it’s a Fox News poll.

    Never mind.

  3. Want Manafort to flip. No prob turn him over those newly out of work dirty cops and they can gestapo any citizen out of anything.

    As for prosecution we have eight of them with nothing better to do. They sure haven’t shown any evidence of doing their job but what the hey we citizens are just dirt to them anyway.

    And the feeling is mutual

  4. Juror (a Trump supporter): “The evidence was overwhelming.”

    “‘I did not want Paul Manafort to be guilty, but he was,’ says juror who supports Trump”

    “One of the jurors from Paul Manafort’s trial said on Wednesday that although she “did not want Paul Manafort to be guilty,” the evidence was “overwhelming.”

    “”I thought that the public, America, needed to know how close this was, and that the evidence was overwhelming,” Paula Duncan said in an interview on Fox News. “I did not want Paul Manafort to be guilty, but he was, and no one’s above the law. So it was our obligation to look through all the evidence.””

    1. “I did not want Paul Manafort to be guilty, but he was, and no one’s above the law. So it was our obligation to look through all the evidence.””

      Wait, what!? No one’s above the law? Look through all the evidence? This can’t possibly be true. This was on Faux News? All Trump supporters are supposedly vile, racist, traitors to our republic. I’m sure I missed a few adjectives. I’m going to guess this will be a lesson most on the Right won’t need and most on the Left won’t get.

  5. The article says, somewhere near the end, that the pardon of Manafort would be a mistake. No. It is time to pardon him. Now. For all crimes and misdemeanors. If he gets charged again then pardon him on day one of that charge or charges. Mueller is a BS MF. Pardon me for using such terms. His mother would not like it.

  6. Now that the Cohen plea has been made, Michael Avenatti can move ahead with his lawsuit.

    He has a stronger case to make to void the NDA since the contract Stormy Daniels signed was part of a campaign finance law conspiracy.

    Michael Avenatti will depose Trump under oath, and the Supreme Court has already ruled presidents must obey subpoenas for testimony in civil cases.

    Avenatti: Have you ever committed adultery?
    Trump: No

    That’s perjury.

    1. Mary Poppins, Does anybody even know/remember what the Stormy Daniels/Avenatti lawsuit is all about? She wants to be free to tell her story – seems like she has already done that – so who cares?

      1. She is also suing Trump for defamation.

        She is not out of her NDA and Trump can still sue her for violating it. She needs to have the court nullify the agreement.

        1. Thank you for clarification – that makes sense. Her character was not defamed as porn star, character became defamed after she met Donald Trump.

    2. Marry – I can hardly wait for Stormy’s deposition. Have you ever committed adultery? List the names of all people and places and times.

        1. Wally – you have no choice but to grow older, but you do not have to grow up. 😉

      1. PC Schulte,…
        In one of Rory Calhoun’s divorce battles, his wife named 79 co-respondants.
        Calhoun didn’t deny this, but said that “she didn’t even name half of them”.
        So Calhoun probably had a good memory, and a very busy schedule.

      2. Stormy has already admitted to sexual infidelities and they are chronicled as a part of her work. She is not as risk of perjury.

  7. Now that Manafort’s been convicted of evading federal taxes, even if pardoned, does he face any liability for non-pardonable evasion of state taxes as well?

  8. History will show this to be the defining moment in our republic where we had the chance to restore the rule of law and failed, if all the crimes committed by those involved with the 2016 election are not prosecuted. Trump, Clinton, DOJ, DNC, FBI, CIA, Emails, money laundering, campaign finance, Spying, Russians, all of it. I don’t care who or what crimes have been committed, if indictments and prosecutions are handled politically and not with equal justice under the law, then we will have officially replaced the rule of law with the rule of lawfare. Then, elections really will have consequences we’ve never seen before.

  9. See Andrew McCarthy on the DC charges (keeping in mind that McCarthy was a working prosecutor and Turley has limited himself to occasional appellate practice). It isn’t a parade of horribles. The foundation of the complaint is that he failed to register as a foreign agent (for which there have been few prosecutions in the last 80 years), that he conspired to fail to register, and that he laundered money in an effort to avoid having to register. IOW, it’s a jerry-rigged structure of prosecutorial creativity. It may very well end with a string of acquittals and deadlocks and its the sort of thing Trump could issue pardons on with a clear conscience.

  10. ‘This obviously is not the set of crimes that special counsel Robert Mueller was appointed to pursue. As noted by the openly skeptical trial judge in this case, Mueller clearly was pursuing President Trump and not these particular crimes. The question now is whether these convictions will further concentrate Manafort on flipping against Trump. If not, Mueller could be left looking like the guy who showed up at a bass fishing competition with a trophy deer head. It may be an impressive eight count buck of a defendant, but still is not the game he was supposed to catch.’

    The lawyer should pull his head out of his legal a**. It makes no difference what crimes are unearthed. When you start digging for gold and you find silver, do you leave the silver behind? Mueller is doing a fantastic job thus far. There are no rules when unearthing crimes. You follow the crimes, money, connections, phone calls, lies-no shortage of lies with Trump.

    If Trump pardons Manafort before the ‘law’ is through with Manafort, then that will be seen as an obstruction of justice. Trump will come off very poorly if he interferes beyond his childish tweeting. If it is not politically effective for the Democrats to cry for impeachment now it will be if Trump gets involved before the whole, and this means all of it, digging is done.

    Right now Trump is losing because it is appearing more and more that he was involved, is complicit, broke laws. The old ‘his word against my word’ routine works in court. If Trump attempts to take the ‘court’ out of the investigation, then he couldn’t be illustrating his guilt more clearly.

    America made a yuge and bigly mistake letting this lying, cheating, scumbag of a disgrace into the White House. America has to undo the mistake and take a long look at its dysfunctional system of electing officials. Take the money out of the equation. Increase to more than two parties. Redefine lobbying. Redefine gerrymandering. Create an independent force that oversees ALL voting in America, keeps voting stations open all day, provides the proper mandatory ID for voters, provides free transportation to and from voting stations; or in other words makes sacred the most important aspect of American life. As it is now it continues to be the same disgrace it was decades ago, just with different BS.

    1. Dear Isaac Newton: When I read “Mueller is doing a fantastic job thus far” I laughed so hard that I almost pulled a stomach muscle. Muler pulled a 2005 cold case off shelf to get Manafort – IRS/DOJ already fully aware of these matters. He did not find silver. Muler is vindictive hack.

      1. Mueller has already scored over 24 indictments in a little over a year.

        The special prosecution against the Clintons over Whitewater lasted 1994-2000 and only resulted in about 15 indictments.

        Mueller is finding a lot more real witches than Ken Starr did.

        1. Marry – since 13 of those indictments are Russians who will never see a courtroom and 3 are corporations who are causing Mueller no end of problems, he really is not making any progress.

          1. LOL. When you write such drivel, are you sitting at the keyboard laughing hysterically that there might be a few people on this site dumb enough to believe you?

  11. I think Manafort gets a pardon but not until either Trump loses in 2020 or if he wins in 2020, after the 2022 midterms. Manafort is going to do some prison time.

    1. Don’t be surprised if pardon comes soon, maybe before DC trial. Charging docs include nothing about Russia collusion and Trump could justify that pardon by citing special counsel run amok. In doing this he would be exercising his right to pardon, and NOT be interfering with Russia collusion investigation since the Manafort proceedings have nothing to do with Russia collusion. Manafort has proven himself to Trump by not agreeing to compose through first trial, and Trump would be wise to not push his luck with second trial. Pardon frees up special counsel to focus its mandate and wrap it up faster. Very inconceivable that there will be any findings of Trump-Russia collusion – if this were the case it would have already been leaked by deep state and/or special counsel.

      1. Mr. Simple Logic said, “Trump would be wise to not push his luck with second trial. Very inconceivable that there will be any findings of Trump-Russia collusion.”

        If the second sentence is true, Tab, then how might the first sentence also be true?

        If the first sentence is true, then how might the second sentence also be true?

        Do you know how to say “logical consistency”? Do you know what “logical consistency” means?

        1. Dear Late4Yoga, Simple logic, let’s see if you can follow: there is a risk that Manafort composes in second trial. Also the whole matter is a distraction from special counsel’s original mandate. “They shoot horses don’t they?”

          1. The risk of Manafort composing is zero, zip, zilch, nil, nada, neechevo, bupkes. Mueller has seized well-nigh all of Manafort’s communications logs and has leap-frogged from those to the communications logs of well-nigh everyone else with whom Manafort had been communicating. Manafort has no choice but to follow the script that he, Gates, Stone and the rest of the Klown Kar Krew wrote for themselves in their emails and text messages to one another.

            Your simple logic is the exact same sort of Crock of Cockamamie that led Captain Cook to pronounce the non-existence of Antarctica because he had circumnavigated it three times without discovering it. And yet, it was right there behind the fog all along.

            1. L4Yoga enables both David Benson and Marky Mark Mark – what does it cost you for this inside info into the Mueller investigation? You are either in on the 4 am NYT and WaPo drop or you have a personal source in the Mueller probe.

      2. Just as the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, so too is the absence of leaking evidence not evidence of no evidence to have been leaked.

      3. No so. The case is an iceberg. Just because we can only see the small part above water doesn’t mean there is no ice below water.

        A pardon won’t stop Mueller from having leverage over Manafort. The government will still pursue asset seizure, which is a civil penalty and cannot be pardoned. All of his houses and bank accounts can be seized as civil penalties to bank fraud.

        Unless Manafort starts talking about the Veselnitskaya meeting and other Russian contacts, his wife and kids will spend the rest of their lives on food stamps.

      4. Bill: this sounds like some crap you got from Faux News. The Special Counsel has not run amok, and when evidence of other crimes turns up in the process of investigating collusion with Russia, the Special Counsel is duty-bound to prosecute these crimes as well. Pardoning someone as clearly guilty as Manafort solely for political reasons and as a means to silence a witness with damaging testimony should fit the definition of obstruction of justice. Anyway, if Manafort gets pardoned, he’ll no longer face criminal jeopardy, and can be subpoenaed and forced to testify about what he knows under pain of contempt of court.

    2. Trump won’t be on the ballot in 2020. By then Republicans will have washed their hands of him.

      1. Trump won’t be on the ballot in 2020.

        Right now, that is as likely to be true as your other idiotic post regarding Turley abandoning his free speech principles.

        I suspect these technical glitches could be quite intentional. It could be Professor Turley is sick of hosting people who think this thread is their safe space.

        1. Olly, Turley may want to upgrade his followers and weed out the old rednecks. I wouldn’t blame him. His students may regard this site as a joke because so many of the commenters are just zombie viewers of Fox News.

          1. If Turley’s students were to regard his blog as a joke, they would do so because your ilk have no respect for the rule of law. They may even be questioning their career choice when their professor hosts a so called legal blog that useful idiots such as yourself have turned into a lawfare forum.

      1. Squeeky – may I suggest click on both boxes on the bottom and getting all your responses by email?

        1. Since I have a wordpress blog, or two ( 🙂 ) this blog will give me the notifications where it is easy for me to respond to people like you. If not, then I have to go thru every “Paul” listing on the left side of the blog, and most of the time, you are talking to other people, and I don’t want to butt in.

          I guess I could use the email option, but since “Fromm” is not my real last name, I would have to keep that email account open. Hopefully, they will iron out the glitches in the next few days.

          I wish I knew how to contact Darren.

          Squeeky Fromm
          Girl Reporter

          1. I do not know what the notifications issue is. WordPress made several low-level changes recently. We are not able to access the mechanisms relating to this as it is under the purview of their system administrators.

            1. Thank you for letting me know! I remember when went to the “easy” system a few years back, and people could no longer do the simple maintenance things they used to be able to do.

              Eventually, wordpress brought back the “WP Administration” option. That was on I think is different in some of the ways it runs.

              I wonder why images and videos no longer automatically generate and run?

              Anyway, thank you again for letting me know.

              Squeeky Fromm
              Girl Reporter

          2. Squeeky – the way to make sure you contact Darren is to address to him and add three links. Three links puts it in the moderator’s box.

            BTW, you are always welcome to butt in on any conversation I am having. 😉 I butt in on people all the time.

  12. Manafort gets a pardon, Cohen doesn’t. Cohen’s lawyer just got him to plead guilty to something that isn’t a crime. It’s too bad Trump won the election, then we wouldn’t have to go through all this. Have a nice day!

    1. “Cohen’s lawyer just got him to plead guilty to something that isn’t a crime.” Correct Bob. The campaign finance items were add-ons to serious issues of tax/bank fraud meant to hurt president and curry favor with persecutors. Also, a political ploy with HRC lovin’ Lanny Boy Davis gleefully behind it.

  13. This reply is to Peter’s last comment…I previously typed a reply, then the liberal virus causing these glitches took away the “Post Comment” area, so I’ll try to find another way to post.
    I stated in that comment (that would not post) that this is far more likely to be an insidious virus cooked up by people like Peter, and his liberal allies here.
    JT would be more straightforward if he was sick and tired of early AM reviews and restatements of his columns by people like L4D.
    Or, being part Sicilian, he could probably make certain people just “disappear”.😄😀😂

    1. You’d be miserable without me, Ptom. Just like you’re miserable now without Ken and Linda.

      FTR, Turley doesn’t run an echo chamber for spoiled rotten little brats who never grew up.

      1. L4Yoga enables both David Benson and Marky Mark Mark – I certainly would not be miserable without you. I am not miserable with you, but I wouldn’t miss you if you were gone.

        1. Well, then, I’ll just have to try harder to make you miserable in the remainder of my time here. Won’t that be fun? Especially for Gnash, Lockheed and Fromm.

          1. L4Yoga enables both David Benson and Marky Mark Mark – I am sure I speak for all us when I say we are terrified at the prospect.

      2. You area allowed to post here, L4B. Given that, the standards for posting here are obviously not that high.
        You’re even allowed to invent your own set of facts, and decide what the words of JT and others “really meant”.
        There’s no real reasons to read his columns on many days… can just scroll down to one of your reviews and find out “what Turley is really saying” when you restate his columns for him.
        And I found out that I’d made comments that I didn’t even make, just from reading your posts.

      3. You’d be miserable without me, Ptom. -Late4Dinner to TomNasty

        Ain’t it the truth, L4D. You really get under his skin.

        1. When a propagandist serves up lies with the propaganda, I can’t say that I hold that liar in high esteem.
          But if Anonymous and some others are OK with propaganda and lies, they can get a steady diet of it served up by Lies4Breakfast.

          1. Post the “lies,” Nashty boy — and then counter them with the truth, with documentation.

            1. I’ve already done that; if Anonymous is too lazy to read comments, or too stupid to understand them, there’s not much I can do about that.

              1. Nashty, as usual. (He loves to whine and complain, but isn’t an effective communicator.)

    2. ‘Me’, cook up a virus? I’m a techno dunce! But Tom your last sentence may have some truth.

    3. TN: I’ve also had issues with things I wrote on this blog not getting posted, so there’s some other kind of problem going on.

  14. Even if Manafort is pardoned, a pardon won’t prevent the asset seizure process that Mueller has already begun.

    A pardon is a get-out-of-jail pass. It doesn’t stop the civil recovery process after a conviction. The government has the right to seize the assets of a convicted felon, and this is what Mueller should be doing. Asset seizure is warranted as a punishment for financial crimes.

    Manafort had better cooperate and disclose information about the Veselnitskaya meeting or else he and his wife will be on food stamps for the rest of their lives.

    1. Excellent observation, MAM/ATV. Turley’s analysis of Manafort’s pardon strategy proceeds from the assumption that Manafort has no knowledge that would incriminate Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner in Mueller’s case-in-chief. That blind-spot is now a fixed idea with Turley. Unless, that is, Turley is trying to put some preemptive legal “spin” on Trump’s anticipated pardon of Manafort for the more operative reason of shielding Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner from Mueller. The trouble is that, even though it would be less difficult to indict Trump Jr. and Kushner with Manafort’s testimony against them, Mueller can still get at Trump Jr., Kushner and Manafort without Manafort as a cooperating witness.

      Meanwhile, a great many people seem to be completely and totally ignoring the fact that Don McGahn has given thirty hours of voluntary interviews to Mueller’s shop on three separate occasions in the last nine months. Don McGahn was the Trump campaign counsel in 2016. McGahn served as a Commissioner on the FEC for five years from 2008 through 2013. Don McGahn’s advise on the Trump Tower meeting ought to have been sought. Either it was or it wasn’t. Don McGahn ought to have advised the Trump campaign against taking the Trump Tower meeting. Either he did or her didn’t.

      How and when did Don McGahn find out about the Trump Tower meeting? Mueller knows the answer to those questions. And so do Trump, Trump Jr., Kushner, Manafort and Gates.

  15. Holding out for pardon is the most sensible strategy. Manafort’s right-hand man Rick Gates held “number two” position in Trump campaign to the end of the election, if there was anything to give related to Russia, Gates probably knew of it and would have given it already as part of his plea. You could argue that overall Gates played much larger role in Trump campaign, since he stayed in high position for much longer time.

    Even if Trump doesn’t pardon Manafort immediately, November 3rd 2020 is already pretty close. After that regardless of outcome pardoning Manafort costs nothing to Trump.

    Manafort is 69 years old, it is unlikely that he would be able successfully to make up stuff to bring down the “up to 305 year prison time” charges down to anything less than de facto life sentence. Strategy of trying to “compose” something on Trump in hope of getting off with just few years, that would be really desperate.


    “In June 2016, when Donald Trump promoted Manafort to the post of campaign manager, Gates went to work for and became the campaign’s number two, handling the day-to-day activities of the campaign including taking responsibility for apparent plagiarism in Melania Trump’s speech at the Republican National Convention. Gates stayed on as number two in the campaign under Steve Bannon after Manafort was forced out, and then went to work as deputy chairman of the Donald Trump Inaugural Committee. He helped to form a pro-Trump nonprofit group called America First Policies but was removed from the organization after his involvement with Manafort’s overseas ventures was exposed.”

    1. Finn, the Trump Tower meeting is driving in your blind-spot. Did you know that Manafort attended the Trump Tower meeting? Did you also know that Gates did not attend the Trump Tower meeting? Perhaps you did know that Gates carried Trump’s cellphone with the blocked number throughout the 2016 campaign. Perhaps you also know that Trump Jr. told Congress that he called his (former) wife at a blocked number. Maybe that was a different blocked number than the one for Trump’s cellphone that Gates was carrying. Or maybe Trump Jr.’s testimony was one of the causes of divorce. Frankly, I’m starting to understand how Trump Jr. could answer 54 questions from Congress with the words “I don’t recall” or words to that same effect.

      P. S. Manafort never testified to Congress. And neither did Kushner. There were, IIRC, only written statements from Kushner to Congress.

  16. If Manafort’s poise in the face of the entire weight of the United States government landing on him to coerce him into aiding in the impeachment of the President has amply shown, Mr. Manafort is anything but desperate. Say what you want about the man (frankly, I disagree with Professor Turley’s opinion that cheating on one’s taxes or failing to declare foreign accounts makes Manafort a “bad person”) but he does have grace under pressure. Compare and contrast with a weasel like Cohen, who was laying the groundwork to rat before he was even contacted by authorities, let alone indicted.

  17. I am not going to post here anymore until they get the notification thingy fixed. To where you can see if you have replies to your comment. It makes no sense to have to read thru all the dribblings of lying/stupid people like Peter Shill, Late4, Hollowwood, etc. to find where somebody truthful and decent commenters like PaulCS, Allan, Spastics, Darren, Michael A, Autumn etc. has replied to you.

    I will check in every day or so to see if it gets fixed.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

      1. Picking up on Squeeky’s comments, I suspect these technical glitches could be quite intentional. It could be Professor Turley is sick of hosting people who think this thread is their safe space.

        What’s more, most of the Trumpers on this thread keep questioning Turley’s opinions while poo-pooing his credentials. In that regard they’re like malicious party guests. One could scarcely blame Turley for wanting to be rid of them.

      2. Darren, Peter Hill must be banned-for-life for his persistent, noncontributory, vicious, ad homnem, personal attacks on Squeeky Fromm, Girl Reporter.

        1. Jawboning the referee remains the tell-tale sign of the sore loser, George. BTW, have you never read the comments of SFGR on this blawg? When it comes to “persistent, noncontributory, vicious, ad hominem, personal attacks,” as you allege against Mr. Hill, SFGR, herself, remains the distilled essence of vitriol and vituperation. And Mr. Hill remains a highly refined gentleman by comparison.

  18. I don’t see Manafort’s pardon strategy as “increasingly desperate,” I see it as increasingly rational. Mueller’s “deals” are no deal. Like Papadopoulos, who received a “deal” of six months in jail from Mueller, compared to van deer Zwaan who plead guilty to the same offense without any deal, and got 60 days from the judge! And Cohen had to plead guilty to 8 felonies and is looking at three years in prison. Great deal, hahaha! Cohen acted like a spurned lover, lashing out at Trump and throwing himself into the arms of Mueller, who burned him. Cohen didn’t have the backbone to stare down Mueller and take his chances with a Trump pardon. I think Manafort is making the right moves so far. If nothing else, at least he’s showing some guts. Cohen is a coward and a weasel who warrants no respect or sympathy from anyone.

    1. Even if Manafort is pardoned, it won’t reverse the civil asset seizure Mueller is undertaking against Manafort. Pardons stop prison sentences but not civil penalties.

      Tens of millions of Manafort assets should now be taken to force his testimony about the Trump Tower meeting unless he wants his wife and children to be in poverty for the rest of their lives.

      Trump cannot pardon away this investigation.

    2. Mueller isn’t prosecuting Cohen. It is the Southern District of New York prosecution that has jurisdiction over the Cohen case because the illegal campaign contributions took place in Manhattan.

  19. “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich”

    This is the first book Manafort should read in prison…before his pardon.

    1. Major conviction? When did that happen, Their major convictions are still waiting to be noticed while we get a parade of dirty cops, dirty lawyers and bungled trials with most of their time spent on anti-constitutional activites like such as banning presumption of innocence, obstructing the workings of the government and other fun activities.

      And let us not forget the dirty politicians like newly outed by herself
      Comrade Warren and the dirty citizens who support them.

      How many I wonder woke up to the truth of what their party has turned into but and are walking. away from. This is what happens when socialism takes it’s final step.

      Meanwhile the major convictions are laughing their ass off on how easy it was to flip the dirty cops, the dirty attorneys, the dirty judges, and the dirty citizens who support them.

      But we are still operating the move to regain fully our representative Constitutional Republic by moving towards a different party system

      On the left the extremist autocratic single party single leader socialism with their broken record of failures and nowhere near the center of our country’s government. Fill in any of their 20 or 30 names

      On the right a Constitutional Republic Party t handle those currentlly in office and able to vote in congress and the Constitutional Centrist Coalition both of whom are supporters of the real center which in our Republic IS the constitution.

      How did you like the photo of the future face of the formerly Democrat party which is not in anyway democratic anymore. A memory for the the “”Walkers to take with them.”

      Time to get back to combat mode as we did in 2016 and won control of the election using legal votes of which the national popularity poll does not count for zip.

Comments are closed.