It’s surely the dream of every red-blooded American kid to grow up and be sued by a porn star.
Remember a million years ago, when right-wing moralists assailed President Barack Obama for diminishing the dignity of the office by putting a foot against his desk and wearing a tan suit? Good times, good times.
We can’t begin to imagine what they would’ve said if Obama had been sued by a sex worker who got paid off to keep her lips zipped on the eve of his election. We can’t begin to imagine … oh what the heck, let’s just quote from the lawsuit filed recently against President Donald Trump:
“Mr. Trump, with the assistance of his attorney, Mr. Cohen, aggressively sought to silence Ms. Clifford as part of an effort to avoid her telling the truth, thus helping to ensure he won the presidential election.”
Thank you, Stormy Daniels! For awhile, I had reluctantly decided to write about chief economic adviser Gary Cohn, who quit his job while Trump was bragging about how everyone wants to work for him. But in the end, Stormy rode to the rescue. Because I know you’d rather read about a sex cover-up than a policy tiff about tariffs.
Nothing reveals Trump’s unparalleled sleaze more than the ever-burgeoning Stormy story. She wants a court to void the Oct. 28, 2016, hush agreement — the one where Trump is listed by an alias, “David Dennison” — because even though she signed it, and Trump lawyer Michael Cohen signed it, Trump himself did not sign it. The signature line above the notification “DD” was left blank.
In other words, Trump is such a loser than he can’t even follow through on muzzling an extramarital mistress.
The other fun fact, of course, is that Cohen paid off Stormy before the election with $130,000 of his own money, and has since reportedly complained to friends that Trump never bothered to reimburse him. Which means that hotel contractors aren’t the only people Trump stiffs.
What’s not fun, however, is the very real possibility that the cover-up maneuver may well have violated federal election law. That’s hardly shocking, given the fact that Team Trump is infested with confessed and credibly accused criminals (thank you, Robert Mueller).
The date of the hush agreement (11 days before the election) and the subsequent payoff to Stormy suggest that Cohen made an “in kind” campaign contribution in an amount that far exceeds what’s legally permitted. A campaign contribution is defined as “anything of value given, loaned or advanced to influence a federal election.” Plus, Cohen’s cover-up donation was made through a Delaware-based LLC set up for that express purpose.The law says that an individual can donate no more than $5,400, and it must be funneled through a political action committee, where it’s publicly recorded. Plus, an “in kind” contribution is defined in law as “an expenditure made by any person or entity in cooperation, consultation or consult with, or at the request or suggestion of, a candidate’s campaign.”
So, the obvious question: Did Trump — excuse me, “David Dennison” — know about the hush agreement? Who among us actually believes he didn’t know what his own loyal lawyer was doing?
But the Trump slag heap is so high that it’s hard to focus on even the stinkiest refuse. A few congressmen have asked the FBI to investigate whether the Stormy payoff broke federal law, but the FBI appears to have its hands full trying to assist Mueller while fending off Trump’s relentless attacks on law enforcement’s independence.
Oh, how we pine for the days when Obama’s tan suit was deemed the height of disrespect for the presidency. Because one tiny provision in Stormy’s hush agreement caught my eye. It’s the subsection where she was compelled to “completely divest herself” of all communications accrued during her months-long affair with Trump, including any and all “still images.”
No, Stormy, no. Please spare us.
Trump Caught On Tape: Trump Lies About Wealth
Donald Trump lied (above) about his wealth to get on the Forbes 400, the business magazine’s ranking of the world’s richest people, posing as publicist ‘John Barron’ to do so.
Writes Jonathan Greenberg in the Washington Post:
…it took decades to unwind the elaborate farce Trump had built to project an image as one of the richest people in America. Nearly every assertion supporting that claim was untrue. Trump wasn’t just poorer than he said he was. Over time I have learned that he should not have been on the first three Forbes 400 lists at all. In our first-ever list, in 1982, we included him at $100 million, but Trump was actually worth roughly $5 million — a paltry sum by the standards of his super-monied peers — as a spate of government reports and books showed only much later.
When Trump was campaigning for president, it was revealed that he masqueraded as his own spokesman earlier in his career to brag about his accomplishments, his wealth, and his alleged desirability to famous women.
In May 2016, The Washington Post published an audio recording of a 1991 call from a man claiming to be on Trump’s PR team, who responded to a request from People magazine reporter Sue Carswell for a comment on Trump’s divorce from wife Ivana and his increasingly complicated relationship with model Marla Maples.
As “John Miller”, Trump touted his reputation as a playboy, explaining that famous actresses and even the likes of Madonna call him wanting to date him.
Trump using the pseudonyms John Miller and John Barron was a fact well-known among New York journalists at the time. Trump would eventually admit that the call to People was a “joke gone awry.” And prior to that call, in 1990, Trump said of the name ‘John Miller,’ “I believe on occasion I used that name.”
Trump denied that fact:
In a phone call to NBC’s “Today” program, Trump denied that he was John Miller. “No, I don’t think it — I don’t know anything about it. You’re telling me about it for the first time and it doesn’t sound like my voice at all,” he said. “I have many, many people that are trying to imitate my voice and then you can imagine that, and this sounds like one of the scams, one of the many scams — doesn’t sound like me.” Later, he was more definitive: “It was not me on the phone. And it doesn’t sound like me on the phone, I will tell you that, and it was not me on the phone. And when was this? Twenty-five years ago?”
Trump continues to lie to this day, though there appears to be little to no consequence.
Pruitt Asks Trump to Make Him Attorney General
While its very possible that Scott Pruitt will not survive being the EPA Director for another week, he has being lobbying Trump for another job as Attorney General.
Yes, the man who is now under Investigation by the EPA Inspector General for using millions of tax payers money for his own person first class travel, believes he should be rewarded with a new job as the top cop.
Current AG Sessions has recused himself from investigations into Russia’s ties to the campaign of President Donald Trump, effectively prohibiting Sessions from firing Mueller. Pruitt, who has not recused himself, would seemingly not face the same constraints.
Switching out Sessions for Pruitt could have its pitfalls. Pruitt would face a tough confirmation hearing in the Senate, where Republicans hold a narrow majority and Democrats would interrogate him about Russia, his EPA tenure and other thorny topics.
Trump Now Hiring From Disney Channel
Telling staff he wants more “hot young women” in his office, Trump is hiring a 22-year old Disney Channel star is making the leap from entertainment to the White House.
Caroline Sunshine, 22, has joined the Trump White House as a press assistant, ABC News has learned.
While she may be known for her acting, Sunshine has interned for the White House, the Office of House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the College Republican National Committee and the California Republican Party, White House Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters told ABC News. She was also involved in the American Enterprise Institute and her school’s Model United Nations team.
Before transitioning to politics, Sunshine spent three seasons playing Tinka Hessenheffer on the Disney Channel sitcom “Shake It Up.” Her other television credits include “A.N.T. Farm” and “Fish Hooks” on Disney Channel and appearances in “The Outfield,” “Marmaduke” and other films.