Trump World Grab-Bag--A Collection

Friday, January 25, 2019

TWGB: A Tale of Two Lawyers and Other Stories

Michael Cohen and Rudy Giuliani seem, on the outside, pretty different characters. Cohen was Trump's "fixer"--not like a regular lawyer. He was the guy you could trust to threaten reporters or pay off inconvenient people, or maybe even rig polls. He's an okay lawyer from a not-great school who has thug connections. And Rudy Giuliani was once "America's mayor" and even ran for president!

Well, whoopie shit. Giuliani is in the process of learning something that Michael Cohen has probably known for some time. Being Trump's legal counsel, IMHO, looks to be the keto version of a shit sandwich--hold the bread! I am very much reminded of a story about two previous attorneys who worked with Trump, and discovered they needed to sit with him in tandem to make sure he didn't forget things.

Which simply sounds adorable until you realize it's actually pretty abusive. Because it means Trump wanted to lie and make his lawyers help him lie and the "forgetting" and "interpretations" were actually his way of being entirely crooked AF.

This sort of explains why Giuliani is caught saying things like: "I've been through all the tapes...I shouldn't have said tapes." But sure--why not say "tapes"? Because there definitely are Michael Cohen/Donald Trump tapes.  Over a hundred of them. Because Michael Cohen was dealing with Trump alone and needed a backup in case Mr. Trump "forgot things". And some of Giuliani's "gaffes" might be the result of Trump "forgetting things" like telling his counsel the entire story. This leaves Giuliani negotiating a minefield of swearing something isn't so that could very well get revealed later.

Like the Moscow Towers signed LOI. And like the apparent actual development plans, that would not exist if, as Trump always claimed, there weren't any active dealings in Russia.

That is why there are so many "Giuliani is incompetent/a liability/making Trump mad" stories out there right now. It truly does look like "ineptitude".  But I don't know that Giuliani is really in any danger, because his messaging about Trump, even while it incrementally moves the goalposts on Trump's potential liability, stays positive, and because his main function is probably "squid ink" anyway. He blurs the timeline because he can't very well reveal a whole picture he might not even have, right?

It's a dirty job. One Roy Cohn or even maybe Michael Cohen would understand "how" dirty.

But there is another, probably more fraught thing going on in the Cohen/Trump/Giuliani triangle--Michael Cohen recently postponed his House Congressional testimony "indefinitely" because of threats to himself and his family coming from Trump and Giuliani. This seems to have to do with dark-tinged Tweets and murmurings from Trump aimed at Cohen's wife and father-in-law. But I'm not counting out that Giuliani has also, in a way, obliquely crossed a line by hinting at what obstruction of justice is and is not:
“A president firing somebody who works for him, if he does no other corrupt act other than just fire him, can’t obstruct justice because that’s what Article Two of the Constitution gives to him solely. Not Congress. Not anybody else. If, for example, a president said, ‘Leave office, or I’m going to, you know, have your kids kidnapped,’ or, ‘I’m going to break your legs.’ Obstruction—I prosecuted a lot of obstruction cases.”

It's not Jim Comey's life he's suggesting could be turned into a Liam Neeson movie. Why is he saying these things are a possibility for anyone? Because there is someone who does have potentially "reachable" family members. (And anyone might, really. Depending upon how well you understand their points of leverage and social connections.) But probably particularly one of Bob Mueller's most reluctant songbirds.

The one who is still subpoenaed by the Senate Intelligence Committee (the one still gaveled by GOP) and will attend next month regardless of all that. Which will make for some lit number of Sunday talking head shows. Lucky spokeslawperson, Rudy Giuliani. Who is, if I am reading his relationship correctly, not actually going to skirt the crime-fraud exemption regarding attorney-client privilege by the time the subject gets to him (because Trump and friends always be criming).

Now, I know there was a conviction in absentia for former Ukraine President Yanukovich for treason and some stuff with Deripaska and sanctions (are they off, or what?)  and other valuable Manafort-related material which I am not addressing, which is probably the really key Trump campaign/administration collusion shit we should be looking at. And I haven't even worked in all the shit about Kushner's security clearance, and how Deustchebank is all up in this.

I will get there soonish--but I had to dump my open tabs right about now. I just got this weird blogger-sense that I better be ready for tomorrow. Because, well, tomorrow is another day! And there will I truly believe be more shit.

UPDATE: If you enjoyed this post, you might enjoy the entire TrumpWorld Grab-Bag Series. I have linked a lot.

No comments: