Report: Trump Asked Cohen to Bury Revealing Pictures of Jerry Falwell Jr. Before His Endorsement

(Official White House Photo: Shealah Craighead)

There is a new report that Rev. Jerry Falwell Jr. reached out to Donald Trump in 2015 to seek his help on preventing the release of revealing photographs. Trump allegedly asked his fixer Michael Cohen to help Falwell. Cohen reportedly succeeded but, in Cohen’s signature style, Cohen reportedly kept at least one photo. Falwell would go on to offer a key endorsement of Trump before the Iowa primary.

Falwell, president of Liberty University, was reportedly described as racy “personal” photographs according to Cohen.  Cohen reportedly told actor Tom Arnold “I actually have one of the photos. It’s terrible.” It is hard to ignore the obvious glee in that statement from an attorney who kept compromising photographic evidence and now decided to dump them into the public for his own interest.

Falwell became one of Trump’s most active supporters — a key religious supporter when Trump’s affairs with a porn star and Playboy bunny were much in the news.

As usual, I am more shocked by Cohen’s conduct. Cohen was belatedly disbarred after a long career as an unethical legal thug. It is also an insight into his work with Trump. Trump poured praise on Cohen when he was threatening and bullying reporters, college students and others in his interest or the interests of his friends. It was only after Cohen flipped that Trump criticized him.

It is truly a tale without a redeeming character.

56 thoughts on “Report: Trump Asked Cohen to Bury Revealing Pictures of Jerry Falwell Jr. Before His Endorsement”

  1. As Reported Last Year:

    Falwell Paid-Off Miami Pool Attendant For $1.8 Million

    Jerry Falwell Jr., the evangelist son of world-famous Southern Baptist minister Jerry Falwell Sr., runs a hardcore-Christian university and often acts as the public face for the American evangelical movement. That’s why it seemed so hypocritical when he endorsed Donald Trump — a sexually rapacious avatar of American greed, racism, and unearned privilege who very clearly does not care about the Bible that Falwell Jr. claims to love so much.

    But it’s also pretty darn curious that Falwell Jr. recently admitted in court that he paid $1.8 million to a pool attendant at Miami Beach’s Fontainebleau resort who had befriended the Falwell family. It was part of an exceedingly odd business deal in which the group tried to buy the Miami Hostel at 810 Alton Rd. in South Beach. The building is attached to the popular Italian restaurant Macchialina and also houses the 120-bed hostel, where a bed costs just $20 per night.

    The case raises more questions than answers: Falwell Jr. and his wife appear to have simply “befriended” a then-21-year-old pool attendant while the husband and wife were staying at the ritzy Fontainebleau. They then welcomed the pool attendant into their lives, began flying him around on a private jet, and even put up millions of dollars to help his business ventures. Falwell and his wife have appeared in Facebook photos eating at Macchialina with the pool attendant — a Florida International University graduate named Giancarlo Granda, who now lives in Washington, D.C., and attends Georgetown University.

    Edited from: “Trump-Tied Evangelist Funded Fountainbleau Pool Attendant’s Miami Beach Real Estate Deal”

    Miami New Times, 12/21/18

    1. hey i love that hotel. get the cheap Cuban food at “latin Cafe” just down 41st street instead of the $15 hamburger at the pool. $15 at Latin Cafe will get you three times as much food for they money and cute waitresses too

      right next to the yeshiva. yeah, really, no joke

      so the Fallwells made friends with a handsome young man, what’s wrong with that? if you cant let your hair down in South Beach……!

  2. Falwell Goes On Fox Radio To Deny Allegations

    But He Admits To ‘Long-Standing Friendship’ With Michael Cohen

    During an appearance on Fox Radio’s “Todd Starnes Show” Tuesday, Falwell told listeners of his friendship with Cohen, but said there are “no compromising or embarrassing photos” of him.

    “While we have a long-standing friendship with Michael Cohen, we never engaged or paid Cohen to represent us in any legal or other professional capacity, and Cohen did not ever resolve any legal matter on our behalf,” Falwell told the Fox Radio host. “This report is not accurate.”

    On Tuesday, Reuters reported that in the months before Falwell issued a shocking endorsement of then-candidate Trump, Cohen, then a fixer and personal lawyer for Trump, helped Falwell deal with a personal matter: someone was trying to blackmail the evangelical leader with racy photos.

    Edited from: “Falwell Hops On Fox Radio To Deny Deal With Cohen To Handle Racy Photos”.

    Today’s “Talking Points Memo”

    Here Falwell denies that Cohen put in a fix. But he admits to a “long-standing friendship” with Cohen.

    How did an evangelical based in Lynchburg Virginia become friends with a Jewish New York lawyer known as a ‘fixer’? Were they actually members of the same social circle..?

    It’s hard to imagine Falwell and Cohen struck up a friendship through shared interests or mutual friends. Falwell’s denials of a fix over compromising photos are patently ridiculous.

  3. Hypocrisy is far worse on the Left because it often involves violence, threatening others and proudly denouncing the constitutional rights of others like PA State Legislator Brian Sims. Falwell looks like a horny boy-scout

    This hypocritical violent stunt by Brian Sims, and the rest of the Leftwing Radical Anarchists public displays of lunacy, appear to be the only ways the democrats can remain relevant and solicit campaign contributions for keeping their political power.


    Not OK: Rep. Brian Sims’ harasses rosary-praying Planned Parenthood protesters

    This is a column about a politician who is as passionate in his support for abortion rights as I am in my opposition to abortion.

    A few days ago, Pennsylvania state Rep. Brian Sims filmed video of himself engaging with a woman — or to use his own words, “an old white lady” — praying the rosary in front of the Planned Parenthood surgical center at 11th and Locust Streets. In the nearly nine-minute video, Sims yells with increasing aggression at the woman. “Shame on you. What you’re doing here is disgusting. It’s wrong,” he says to her while pacing alongside her as she calmly walks along the sidewalk.

    As the video continues, he admonishes her, “Don’t convince yourself that what you’re doing isn’t extremely racist. It’s grotesque.”

    Brian Sims

    Push back against Planned Parenthood protestors, PLEASE! They prey on young women, they use white privilege, & shame. They’re racist, classist, bigots who NEED & DESERVE our righteous opposition. Push back, please! #YouAreStrongEnough

    12:35 PM – May 2, 2019
    Twitter Ads info and privacy

    Brian Sims @BrianSimsPA
    Push back against Planned Parenthood protestors, PLEASE! They prey on young women, they use white privilege, & shame. They’re racist, classist, bigots who NEED & DESERVE our righteous opposition….

    10.1K people are talking about this

    We don’t know what happened before the video began, but it’s common to see protesters in front of this Planned Parenthood location. Sometimes they yell at the women entering the building. Sometimes they hand out pro-life literature. Sometimes they stand silently and pray the rosary.

    I was horrified by Sims’ video, because, as a Catholic and a defender of the unborn, I believe it is this woman’s right to pray anywhere she wants. But I was also concerned, because it runs counter to my past experience with Sims.

    Shortly after Sims won his election in 2012, I interviewed him for an article in the Daily News. I came away impressed with his interest in bipartisanship. At the time, I wrote that we disagreed on many issues but that, “Sims is one of the more principled and collaborative public servants I’ve encountered in my half-century on earth, most of it spent in this beloved cesspool known as Philadelphia.”

    I also noted: “As Sims once put it, he’s trying to find empathy for people who disagree with him.”

    In that interview, Sims told me that “The idea of not even changing a mind, but being able to work with a mind that is unchanging or work with a mind that is opposed to yours, you need to understand it. It sounds very elementary, and it’s something that we talk a lot about around here, the idea that nothing should be revolutionary about the idea that you have to understand the people that you work with. But somehow that seems revolutionary of late in this sort of modern discussion of American politics.”

    I’m trying to figure out how that statement fits with what I saw on Sims’ own video — and with the 3-week-old video I found on his Facebook page in which he offers $100 to “anyone who can identify” the people whom he calls “pseudo-Christian protesters.”

    Embedded video

    Brian Sims

    I will fiercely protect a woman’s right to make the best choices for her health & her body, unimpeded. I also know that two wrongs don’t make a right, especially on the front lines of a civil rights battle. I can do better, and I will do better, for the women of Pennsylvania.

    3:38 PM – May 7, 2019

    33.1K people are talking about this

    Twitter Ads info and privacy

    It seems that the Brian Sims I interviewed in 2013 is not the same Brian Sims anymore.

    I am extremely troubled by the fact that a man who is paid by our tax dollars feels it is appropriate to publicly shame one of those taxpayers just because he disagrees with her.

    At a time when our country is increasingly polarizing and fractured along party lines, I have to wonder: Is this the kind of behavior we want to see from our elected officials? Public figures wield an immense amount of power, and have voices that carry. Because of this, they also have an increased obligation to be cautious with the way they use that power.

    People have rightly criticized President Trump for harsh and often disrespectful language. Sims, as an elected official, is no different.

    I’ll be praying the rosary at that Planned Parenthood in the near future. I better get my hair done, in case Brian comes by with his camera.


    Turn out the lights the Mueller Hoax is over. Why is Professor Turley recycling the failed Mueller “malicious prosecution” while ignoring the looming investigation that is closing in on the Obama Coup D’etat in America?

    Azra Turk was recently added to the list of co-conspirators when it was revealed that she “tempted” Papadopoulos on orders from American Intel. Oops!

    The Obama Coup D’etat in America is the most egregious abuse of power and the most prodigious scandal in American political history.

    The co-conspirators are:

    Rosenstein, Mueller/Team, Comey, McCabe, Strozk, Page, Kadzic, Yates, Baker,

    Bruce Ohr, Nellie Ohr, Priestap, Kortan, Campbell, Sir Richard Dearlove, Steele,

    Simpson, Joseph Mifsud, Alexander Downer, Stefan “The Walrus” Halper, Azra Turk,

    Kerry, Hillary, Huma, Mills, Brennan, Clapper, Lerner, Farkas, Power, Lynch, Rice,

    Jarrett, Holder, Brazile, Sessions, Obama et al.

  5. From Referenced Article:

    Revelations Explain How Pro-Choice New York Playboy..

    Got Endorsement From Major Evangelist

    Cohen’s connection to the Falwells sheds light on the formidable alliance between Trump and a man who, through his university, is one of the most influential evangelical figures in America. Falwell’s backing helped galvanize evangelicals and persuaded many Christians concerned about Trump’s past behavior to embrace him as a repentant sinner.

    Falwell’s support for Trump has not wavered throughout the New York celebrity-politician’s own tribulations, including the Access Hollywood recording of Trump talking about grabbing women’s genitals and payoffs made by Cohen to hide Trump’s extramarital affairs. This past weekend, Falwell tweeted that “Trump should have 2 yrs added to his 1st term” to make up for the two years of the Mueller investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

    Falwell’s endorsement of Trump, however, did surprise some students and staff at Liberty University, the school in Lynchburg, Virginia, founded by Falwell’s father, Jerry. It was at Liberty where fellow Republican presidential candidate and major Trump rival Ted Cruz had chosen to launch his campaign the previous year. Cruz’s father was an evangelical preacher, much like Falwell’s father; Trump has been married three times and divorced twice. For years, prior to running for president, Trump boasted of his sexual exploits and supported a host of social positions, such as abortion rights, that run counter to beliefs espoused by Falwell.

    Edited from: “Trump Fixer Cohen Says He Helped Falwell Handle Racy Photos”

    Reuters, 5/7/19

    1. Re: Above:

      This explains the inexplicable. How a debauched New York playboy, running for president, managed to get the endorsement of a major evangelical. That evangelical needed a fixer to bury compromising photographs. Donald Trump offered his lawyer to arrange a fix. In return Trump got a key endorsement for his fledgling campaign.

      This whole affair illustrates the moral bankruptcy of so-called Christian conservatives; a key base of support for Donald Trump. They all gravitated to Trump essentially because Michael Cohen put in a fix!

      Furthermore this issue reveals the insane hypocrisy of the anti-abortion movement. Trump, a decades-long playboy, is now part of this movement because his lawyer put in a fix over compromising photographs involving an evangelical. Though in all fairness, no one should be surprised. The Christian Right’s support of Donald Trump never made any sense.

      1. It doesn’t ‘explain’ anything ‘inexplicable’ to anyone who isn’t obtuse. ‘Major evangelicals’, like everyone normal, make choices between actual alternatives which incorporate trade-offs.

        Anyone who isn’t a knucklehead would wait a few days to see if this story pans out. What Truman Capote said about living in California applies: “You lose one point off your IQ for every year you’re out there”.

      2. Peter Shill trolls…How a debauched New York playboy, running for president, managed tobeat the snot out of Hillary Clinton in spite of her outspending Trump 3:1 and having the liberal MSM carry her water

        FTFY Peter Shill.

        You’re welcome


    1. Turn out the lights the Mueller Hoax is over. Why is Professor Turley recycling the failed Mueller “malicious prosecution” while ignoring the looming investigation that is closing in on the Obama Coup D’etat in America?

      Azra Turk was recently added to the list of co-conspirators when it was revealed that she “tempted” Papadopoulos on orders from American Intel. Oops!

      The Obama Coup D’etat in America is the most egregious abuse of power and the most prodigious scandal in American political history.

      The co-conspirators are:

      Rosenstein, Mueller/Team, Comey, McCabe, Strozk, Page, Kadzic, Yates, Baker,

      Bruce Ohr, Nellie Ohr, Priestap, Kortan, Campbell, Sir Richard Dearlove, Steele,

      Simpson, Joseph Mifsud, Alexander Downer, Stefan “The Walrus” Halper, Azra Turk,

      Kerry, Hillary, Huma, Mills, Brennan, Clapper, Lerner, Farkas, Power, Lynch, Rice,

      Jarrett, Holder, Brazile, Sessions, Obama et al.

  6. I don’t know what becomes of the profession at this point. Cohen is just jaw dropping brazen, but I also wonder about the role of the special prosecutor in seeking to use someone’s attorney to go after them. Seems they have aided and abetted this monumental blight on attorneys. Even after being disbarred I should hope that an attorney would not turn on a client or betray a confidence like this. I’m just dumbfounded, not only by Cohen but by the fact that the media don’t seem to appreciate the seriousness if this at all.

  7. Yawn. Another Christian hypocrite, like Mikey Pence, who craves title and power more than standing up for his professed Christian values, which don’t include lying, misogyny, racism, xenophobia and tax cheating. I suppose that if Falwell calls Cohen a liar, then Cohen will release the photo, at which point the Trumpsters and Evangelicals will decry it to be a phony or scream “shame” for any media which publishes it.

    Again, while Turley just despises Cohen, and not without good reasons, Trump is the source of his shenanigans. Trump wanted the support of Evangelicals, so this was obtained by his fixer silencing the would-be blackmailer in exchange for his support.

    1. Obsessed person checking in her daily rant about TRUMP. Chooses an article that has nothing to do with him

      Good morning miss did you have your tea today? Somehow you seem like one of those people who buys the fancy teas from Starbucks
      maybe one of these geniuses

      I like the orange peel – black tea they give away for free at the gym. I never got to starbucks. My idea of splurging is cheap puer cha from the asian market, brewed at home.

      1. Cohen threatens a would-be blackmailer of Falwell, in exchange for which Falwell endorses Trump, but this has nothing to do with Trump?

  8. Who is Jerry Falwell? Is he a Russian? The letters “Rev.” are posted in front of his name. Does that mean Republican ex violinist? Most repubs now play smartphones and not musical instruments.

    1. The word burg is another name for the word town. They lynch people in that town. The reverend prays that those lynched go to hell.

  9. sexual chastity is an ideal. it’s hard for a lot of people to live up to. often the people who live up to it easily, are those who have few opportunities to transgress. famous people have a lot of them. so they are going to have more naughty infractions. even preachers.

    a failure to follow an ideal does not mean that you throw the ideal in the garbage, too.
    compare to sickness: one may be sick, but you try to get better

    as for cohen, i’m not sure what he did wrong, here, other than telling someone about the content, which was a violation of privilege. it is a lawful and ethical task to try and spare a client from damage to reputations. people can hire lawyers to do this and lawyers can act within the law to help in that way. NDAs, confidentiality clauses, lawsuits, all that is legit work. I don’t moralize at my clients, i help them. Usually by the time they got to the lawyer, they know they screwed up already.

    1. also, keeping in mind the whole story can be bogus or maybe parts of it, who knows. the mass media feels free to spread hearsay upon hearsay and repeat obvious lies so why not make them up, too?

      another thing. is there a rulebook for “fixers” which says you DONT keep any of the embarassing subject material? Guess what. People attack lawyers. Most of all, CLIENTS attack their own lawyers. Lawyers’ files are thick with defensive materials. Keeping the subject material or perhaps notes of it SOP, depending on the content and appropriateness. Of course some subject material might trigger a duty to report to LE; or some might just be properly destroyed and not retained. But it might be wise to retain in some situations. Who knows? Here we have very little detail.

      Also observe some people are more sensitive than others. A photo of a drunken preacher “mooning” someone for example, might be embarassing to the preacher, but to you or me, we would just laugh it off. young people are especially now far less sensitive to exposure of their private details, in this age of “selfies” and digitally reinforced exhibitionism

  10. To me, the tragic outcome, is just another smear upon the reputation of truly fine, honest, hard-working, caring lawyers who dominate the profession. Of course we have our slimballs like Cohen – name me a profession which doesn’t? Another time we can talk about the 85,000 cops who have been punished for violent/abusive behavior, or the countless doctors who have committed malpractice upon those who died and the fact that medical negligence is the number one killer, or the doctors who render a false diagnosis of cancer, or the hedge-fund managers who Ponzi their clients to death. Give us a break and talk about them for a while. Oh, and Turley lending credence to Avenatti has cost Turley that amount of credence. You’d think he’d know better.

    1. i dislike the hell out of avenatti but I don’t fault turley for having been his professor. you guys are a tough crowd!

  11. “Reportedly” “Reportedly” “Reportedly”. How sketchy does the sourcing have to be before you’re inhibited from trafficking in these stories?

  12. Umm, who submitted this report, you know their name/s?


    Thank you ” Our Fellow Americans ” for honoring Our Great Nation _ America, Once a Constitutional Republic …. /s/ Ambassador Leo Emil Wanta,
    Chairman and Sole Principal of AmeriTrust Groupe, Inc. ( Richmond, Virginia ), Granting USDollars 35 Billion for ” Our Established Borders, which includes Our Southern Border Wall “

  14. As usual, I am more shocked by Cohen conduct. Cohen was belatedly disbarred after a long career as an unethical legal thug. It is also an insight into his work with Trump

    I am more sickened by Falwell. Cohen is the typical attorney. Sorry.

    Liberty University runs very profitable schools including an Osteopathic School of Medicine. LU screens very aggressively applicants who must meet their fantasy Christian prototype. Ive known a few graduates from that school and some detested their school’s hypocrisy as much as you detest Cohen

    The applicant should demonstrate a humanitarian, service mentality consistent with the mission of the College of Osteopathic Medicine as demonstrated by action and involvement in outreach and service events. Each applicant’s personal values should be compatible with the Christian mission and environment of Liberty University.

    Our country has gone to rot.

    It is truly a tale without a redeeming character.

    Michael Avenatti.

    Why your selective outrage? You state Cohen is an insight into his work with Trump. Yet you worked with Avenatti. What gives?


    Turley and Avenatti To Appear At GW Event

    April 18, 2018
    Today I will have the pleasure of joining my former student Michael Avenatti for an event moderated by Dean Blake D. Morant. The event at 3-4 pm is open to the public (though pre-registration guarantees a spot) at the Jack Morton theater at 805 21st Street, NW, Washington, DC 20052. The event is being co-sponsored by the law school and the School of Media & Public Affairs.

    Avenatti came to GW after earning his B.A. in political science from the University of Pennsylvania. He was in my torts class as a first-year law student and then worked with me on national security issues, including constitutional issues relating to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). He graduated Order of the Coif.

    1. You might reserve judgment about Falwell until you’ve seen the photos. Or have secure information that they actually exist and this actually happened. Come to think of it, you might reserve judgement about the school in any case, as it has 12,000 students at its brick-and-morter campus and thousands of employees.

      1. I don’t care if the photos show him with a woman, man, animal or all three. We all make mistakes. But with falling comes contrition….mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. While this is more of a Catholic construct, Falwell asking Cohen to cover him for his sins….outrageous.

        LU College of Medicine doesn’t have 12,000 students. It is an osteopathic (DO) school, opened a few years ago, has few medical graduates to their history, it is not an allopathic medical (MD) school and their tuition and fees outrageous precisely for a new DO school. There exists a glut of DO schools (the lesser medical school pathway) with MD schools already struggling to match their own MD graduates into residency programs. More and more DO grads are not matching to residency programs because of a dearth of DO residency programs. Unlike law school, if a medical school graduate (MD and DO) doesn’t match into a residency training program, their medical degree is worthless.

        newer DO schools like LUCOM are money making schemes. They target MD applicant rejects just like Caribbean medical schools. Throw in their Christian metric and now Falwell/Cohen…more insult.

        I always counsel students who are aspiring physicians to shoot for MD schools only. If their stats are truly irredeemable, then they should apply only to DO schools with a long history of performance like the other Virginia DO school (Edward Via COM) which has a far better reputation in DO circles. But they must prepare to be shunned and suffer the contempt by many in the profession who regard DO physicians as lesser creatures. LUCOM DO Physicians have a formidable hurdle to be employed. Falwell has just made that far harder for them. Better if he resign and seek “a life of prayer” to save the students

        The students lose here.

  15. There is one truly significant fact. Trump is the President of the United States

      1. @CAsswall-Your funny, maybe you’d like another special investigation. He’s President now and probably in 2020 Thanks to the Dumocrats.

    1. Martha

      Trump is not only president, he’s also a great business tycoon who never met a deal he couldn’t lose daddy’s money on.

      1. May we presume you’re jealous of the success of others and you sin as you covet the wealth of others? Shall we order the disposition of every individual’s estate upon his death? Where does the Constitution say that succeeding is bad and passing your estate on to your family is unnatural? Do you have any assets; a will or a trust? Perhaps you’re simply a failure seeking grift. Comrade, you have absolutely no grasp of the concept of American freedom and free enterprise or the severe restrictions and limitations placed on government and the maximal freedom of individuals provided for by the Constitution.

        Article 1, Section 8 provides Congress merely the power to tax for “…general Welfare…,” omitting and, thereby, excluding any power to tax for “…individual welfare…” or for the purposes of communistic redistribution of wealth. It goes on to severely restrict and limit the power of Congress to regulate anything other than trade, exchange or “…commerce among the several States” to preclude bias or favor by one state over another. Similarly, the right to private property denies to government any ability to possess or dispose of any individual’s private property with the sole exception of Eminent Domain. Government may take one’s property completely or leave it alone completely. James Madison defined private property as “that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.”

        To sum it up, government can tax only for roads, water, electricity, sewer, trash pick-up, post office, etc., GENERAL not INDIVIDUAL welfare – government cannot tax to take money from one man to give it to another. And government cannot “regulate” any aspect of any business other than “commerce among the several States.”

        Other people’s money, real property, moveable property, businesses etc. are absolutely none of your or the government’s business. The entire communistic American welfare state is unconstitutional including, but not limited to, affirmative action, quotas, welfare, food stamps, rent control, social services, forced busing, minimum wage, utility subsidies, WIC, TANF, HAMP, HARP, Education, Labor, Obamacare, Obamaphones, Social Security, Social Security Disability, Medicare, Medicaid, “Fair Housing,” laws, “Non-Discrimination” laws, etc.

        Karl Marx wrote the Communist Manifesto 59 years after the adoption of the Constitution because none of the principles of the Communist Manifesto were in the Constitution. Had the principles of the Communist Manifesto been in the Constitution, Karl Marx would have had no reason to write the Communist Manifesto. The principles of the Communist Manifesto were not in the Constitution then and the principles of the Communist Manifesto are not in the Constitution now.

        You should consider citizenship in Cuba, China, Vietnam, North Korea or other totalitarian dictatorships in your personal “pursuit of happiness.”

        1. George

          You seem to be out of sorts today. I hope you didn’t try to drive yourself home. Think about the children.

  16. aren’t we all feeling a tad more dirty with each sip at the Cohen cup of retribution?

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