Author Topic: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...  (Read 342214 times)

Jrr85

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1208
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3850 on: August 24, 2018, 10:58:33 AM »
I'm not saying it's impossible to adhere to the law; I'm just saying that it's common to fail to because it is a significant administrative burden and not everybody is successful at managing it.  Bob Dole got popped and Obama got popped, and I don't think they had a problem with having sex with porn stars and then paying them off.  I try to never overestimate politicians though so I'm open to any argument that they were banging porn stars if you have one to make.

After the stark difference between Obama's administrative oversight and Trump's intentionally non-reported hush payments has been brought up several times, why do you keep trying to make this false equivalency between the two?

It's not a false equivalency.  There is a big moral difference between paying off a porn star and not paying off a porn star.  If people want to argue that Obama is better on this front, I think that's a pretty iron clad position to argue. 

But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.   

Glenstache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1963
  • Age: 186
  • Location: Seattle!
  • Target FI date 2027 (maybe?)
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3851 on: August 24, 2018, 10:58:50 AM »
I'm not saying it's impossible to adhere to the law; I'm just saying that it's common to fail to because it is a significant administrative burden and not everybody is successful at managing it.  Bob Dole got popped and Obama got popped, and I don't think they had a problem with having sex with porn stars and then paying them off.  I try to never overestimate politicians though so I'm open to any argument that they were banging porn stars if you have one to make.

After the stark difference between Obama's administrative oversight and Trump's intentionally non-reported hush payments has been brought up several times, why do you keep trying to make this false equivalency between the two?

I think the difference here is that if Trump had made these payments in 2006, and there was no campaign around then, yes, it would not have been illegal to pay hush money. The difference is that in this case there is a direct, and apparently well-documented, link to a campaign. Those payments were intentionally concealed. Within that context, yes the hush payments became illegal. Context matters.

GuitarStv

  • Senior Mustachian
  • ********
  • Posts: 11852
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3852 on: August 24, 2018, 11:04:46 AM »
But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.

That's a pretty big difference, is it not?

Also, Trump didn't fail to report his spending through oversight or misinterpretation.  He didn't report the money because it was hush money.  If he had reported it, that would have defeated the purpose of paying it in the first place, right?  That was a willful decision to hide the money.

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3853 on: August 24, 2018, 11:07:48 AM »
Nereo-
I was overly exasperated in that reply. Rereading your objections, I think you deserved a more measured response than I gave the first time.

Particularly since there is little evidence that the tariffs affect share prices, and I haven't offered another example of a step Trump could take that would jitter market confidence, you're probably correct: Trump simply believes that him being POTUS is what's caused this nice appreciation in the SP500.

no offense taken, but thanks for the follow up.  I'm just here to hear different ideas and perspectives (and to share my own, of course)

Glenstache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1963
  • Age: 186
  • Location: Seattle!
  • Target FI date 2027 (maybe?)
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3854 on: August 24, 2018, 11:12:14 AM »
I'm not saying it's impossible to adhere to the law; I'm just saying that it's common to fail to because it is a significant administrative burden and not everybody is successful at managing it.  Bob Dole got popped and Obama got popped, and I don't think they had a problem with having sex with porn stars and then paying them off.  I try to never overestimate politicians though so I'm open to any argument that they were banging porn stars if you have one to make.

After the stark difference between Obama's administrative oversight and Trump's intentionally non-reported hush payments has been brought up several times, why do you keep trying to make this false equivalency between the two?

It's not a false equivalency.  There is a big moral difference between paying off a porn star and not paying off a porn star.  If people want to argue that Obama is better on this front, I think that's a pretty iron clad position to argue. 

But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.

It seems the kernel of this is whether we think that they simply didn't recognize that this would be considered a payment that would require disclosure, or if it was intentionally hidden. I think that we would all agree that from a legal standpoint ignorance of a law does not provide immunity from that law; and as a leading presidential candidate it is reasonable to expect the campaign to have staff that know these rules. Clearly the GOP has run a few campaigns and has people that know these things.

In the context of the payment, Cohen and co. went to great lengths to conceal the payments. Perhaps this was just business as usual for them to provide a greater certainty that these things would not be revealed. Perhaps. But it is also true that the very reporting of that payment would reveal the issue if someone traced back the payments. I think that if they have emails or other communications documenting that they did this to prevent disclosure in association with the campaign (there is clear motive) then the prosecutors have a strong case.

I am also not surprised in the least to hear Trump going on Fox news to claim that this wasn't really a campaign contribution. He has lied about so many things that lying to divert or provide from something that actually matters seems like a predicted behavior. Given that his pattern of behavior is one of looseness with facts, I am less likely to trust him when he offers an alternate explanation. As Maya Angelou says, "When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time." Or in this case, well, I've lost count of how many times Trump has shown that he prefers to cover things up and be dishonest.

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3855 on: August 24, 2018, 11:23:25 AM »
None of those deal with paying hush money to a porn star.  They are all campaign finance related provisions, except the last one deals with making it illegal to cause somebody else to do something illegal.  It is simply not illegal to pay hush money regarding an affair. 

If you are a candidate running for federal office, it is.  It's an even bigger crime, though, to conceal these payments from your campaign filings by i) saying they never happened, ii) having your personal lawyer make the payments while denying their existence and iii) running bogus invoices through another corporation to avoid these legal requirements.

The phrase: The coverup may be worse than the crime may be apt here, though in this case the coverup was explicitly to avoid losing votes in a very close Presidential election.

...and can we realize that paying for sex (as Trump has been implicated in doing) IS actually illegal the states this reportedly happened? Not to mention morally reprehensible when one is married with a newborn?  And that our Founders considered morally reprehensible behavior to be grounds for impeachment, even if it occurred when the individual was not President (See George Mason's argument) ?  The argument then either becomes A) These things didn't actually happen, despite testimony under oath of multiple individuals, or ... B) somehow committing adultery and engaging in prostitution and then lying about it and breaking laws in the process to gain the office of the presidency is 'ok'.


GuitarStv

  • Senior Mustachian
  • ********
  • Posts: 11852
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3856 on: August 24, 2018, 11:27:52 AM »
...and can we realize that paying for sex (as Trump has been implicated in doing) IS actually illegal the states this reportedly happened?

Not if there's a video tape of the sex.  If there was, then it becomes pornography not prostitution and is protected under the first amendment.  :P

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3857 on: August 24, 2018, 11:31:42 AM »
As Glenstache alluded to earlier, we now know who one of the 'Executives' was from Cohen's plea; Allen Weisselberg, CFO of the Trump Organization.

Earlier today it was revealed that he has been given immunity in exchange for his full cooperation.  According to the Cohen indictment, he and another executive were responsible for transferring money to make payments to Daniels. Assuming Weisselberg corroborates what Cohen has said under oath, the Trump Organization itself made at least some of these contributions, not DJT.

As CFO, Weisselberg might also know of any other financial skeletons in the Trump closet.  Maybe there's nothing to find, but if there is Mueller has Trump by the purse-strings. Capone eventually went away on tax fraud...

Glenstache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1963
  • Age: 186
  • Location: Seattle!
  • Target FI date 2027 (maybe?)
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3858 on: August 24, 2018, 11:46:29 AM »
As Glenstache alluded to earlier, we now know who one of the 'Executives' was from Cohen's plea; Allen Weisselberg, CFO of the Trump Organization.

Earlier today it was revealed that he has been given immunity in exchange for his full cooperation.  According to the Cohen indictment, he and another executive were responsible for transferring money to make payments to Daniels. Assuming Weisselberg corroborates what Cohen has said under oath, the Trump Organization itself made at least some of these contributions, not DJT.

As CFO, Weisselberg might also know of any other financial skeletons in the Trump closet.  Maybe there's nothing to find, but if there is Mueller has Trump by the purse-strings. Capone eventually went away on tax fraud...

Putin and the other oligarchs have been pretty unhappy about the Magnitsky act and the versions that have been passed in other countries. They have been unhappy because the act specifically targets the people with political influence by locking down their assets in foreign countries. The strategy behind that is direct and intentional. The best way to hurt and influence the bad-actor policy makers is through their money. There's a reason Putin specifically wanted to talk to have the US send Browder to Russia to "talk to him": Browder is the key person who pushed the Magnitsky act in the US and other countries. The act is named after a colleague of Browder's (Magnitsky) who was imprisoned by Putin, tortured for a year, and then killed.

Putin has been trying to push back as much as he can on those targeted sanctions. When this act came up in the Trump Tower meeting, it clearly was not because of the adoption provisions. I doubt we will see an easily understood or clear linkage to the Trump Org finances, but if we do it would be catastrophically damning. Getting an inside look at Trump's books could answer a lot of questions (and, to be fair, could actually exonerate him of a lot of things he has been accused of).

Some additional reading on Magnitsky: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/democracy-post/wp/2018/07/20/whats-really-behind-putins-obsession-with-the-magnitsky-act/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.64091384f2c5

The 8/2/18 Preet Bharara interview with Browder is a very good listen as well.
https://www.npr.org/podcasts/551791730/stay-tuned-with-preet

Jrr85

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1208
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3859 on: August 24, 2018, 11:52:57 AM »
But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.

That's a pretty big difference, is it not?

Also, Trump didn't fail to report his spending through oversight or misinterpretation.  He didn't report the money because it was hush money.  If he had reported it, that would have defeated the purpose of paying it in the first place, right?  That was a willful decision to hide the money.

No.  He could have had the campaign pay Cohen.  It would have presented the same issue Hillary's campaign faced as far as how to report money for foreign Oppo research through a law firm used as a cutout, but I think they could have come up with a generic but legally sufficient description of the money that didn't reveal to anybody examining his records what it was for. 

 

Jrr85

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1208
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3860 on: August 24, 2018, 12:01:49 PM »
I'm not saying it's impossible to adhere to the law; I'm just saying that it's common to fail to because it is a significant administrative burden and not everybody is successful at managing it.  Bob Dole got popped and Obama got popped, and I don't think they had a problem with having sex with porn stars and then paying them off.  I try to never overestimate politicians though so I'm open to any argument that they were banging porn stars if you have one to make.

After the stark difference between Obama's administrative oversight and Trump's intentionally non-reported hush payments has been brought up several times, why do you keep trying to make this false equivalency between the two?

It's not a false equivalency.  There is a big moral difference between paying off a porn star and not paying off a porn star.  If people want to argue that Obama is better on this front, I think that's a pretty iron clad position to argue. 

But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.

It seems the kernel of this is whether we think that they simply didn't recognize that this would be considered a payment that would require disclosure, or if it was intentionally hidden. I think that we would all agree that from a legal standpoint ignorance of a law does not provide immunity from that law; and as a leading presidential candidate it is reasonable to expect the campaign to have staff that know these rules. Clearly the GOP has run a few campaigns and has people that know these things.
  It's not whether it was intentionally hidden.  IT was obviously hidden.  The question is whether he (1) didn't think about whether this was a campaign contribution (my guess), (2) thought about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that paying off a mistress was not a campaign expense and therefore campaign funds couldn't be used to pay it nor was it reportable (which seems to me an eminently reasonable conclusion if possibly incorrect) or (3) though about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that it was a campaign expense that the campaign could pay and that he would have to report but decided he'd rather break the law and pay for it personally (which seems unlikely to me). 

In the context of the payment, Cohen and co. went to great lengths to conceal the payments. Perhaps this was just business as usual for them to provide a greater certainty that these things would not be revealed. Perhaps. But it is also true that the very reporting of that payment would reveal the issue if someone traced back the payments. I think that if they have emails or other communications documenting that they did this to prevent disclosure in association with the campaign (there is clear motive) then the prosecutors have a strong case.
  I suspecct this was business as usual.  I find it hard to believe that out of Trump's infidelities, no one ever tried to squeeze him.  I would not be shocked if his lack of shame caused him to tell blackmailers to go pound sand before he was running for office.  And I would not be shocked if he paid hush money despite his lack of shame because divorce was still expensive and unpleasant.

I am also not surprised in the least to hear Trump going on Fox news to claim that this wasn't really a campaign contribution. He has lied about so many things that lying to divert or provide from something that actually matters seems like a predicted behavior. Given that his pattern of behavior is one of looseness with facts, I am less likely to trust him when he offers an alternate explanation. As Maya Angelou says, "When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time." Or in this case, well, I've lost count of how many times Trump has shown that he prefers to cover things up and be dishonest.
  i'm not surprised because this is an eminently reasonable conclusion.  Maybe these were in fact campaign expenditures because he never would have made the payment if not for the campaign, but unless he's put that in an email somewhere, I would be shocked if Trump didn't make the completely reasonable argument that paying hush money so your wife doesn't find out about an affair is not a campaign expenditure, even if that's not what happened in this case.

JLee

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4951
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3861 on: August 24, 2018, 01:26:47 PM »
The mental gymnastics in this thread are absolutely stunning.

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3862 on: August 24, 2018, 01:50:18 PM »
  It's not whether it was intentionally hidden.  IT was obviously hidden.  The question is whether he (1) didn't think about whether this was a campaign contribution (my guess), (2) thought about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that paying off a mistress was not a campaign expense and therefore campaign funds couldn't be used to pay it nor was it reportable (which seems to me an eminently reasonable conclusion if possibly incorrect) or (3) though about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that it was a campaign expense that the campaign could pay and that he would have to report but decided he'd rather break the law and pay for it personally (which seems unlikely to me). 


Nope - again!  Ignorance of the law is not a legal defense. It is immaterial whether DJT (1) didn't think about it, or (2) decided (self-justified) that it was ok. The intentional act is all that matters from a legal standpoint, and you yourself have argued that he clearly hid these payments both at the time and for months afterwards. If the allegations being made by Cohen and others are true, Trump broke the law through a series of deliberate, pre-meditated actions, and then continued to obfuscate his deeds for months.

These kinds of koo-koo defenses are tried and fail all the time, particularly with white collared crimes.  "I was owed" or "I didn't know it was against the law" or "I'm not the only one in my industry/company/department". The fact that this has been ongoing for over a year negates any possibility that this could be a one-off or that he had been meaning to correct the campaign filings.

Personally I think the most likely explanation is one you didn't put forth: (4) - He assumed he would never get caught because he's got his loyal 'fixer' and corporation to hide it all - after all he's not releasing his taxes and the Trump Organization is a private entity that doesn't have the reporting requirements of the public firms.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2018, 01:55:21 PM by nereo »

GreenEggs

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 525
  • Location: Here & There
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3863 on: August 24, 2018, 01:51:26 PM »
The mental gymnastics in this thread are absolutely stunning.




It's hard to believe that they're just amatures.


They shame most of the brightest minds of MSNBC & FOX. 


I bet their bosses wish they were working!!

Jrr85

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1208
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3864 on: August 24, 2018, 02:06:36 PM »
  It's not whether it was intentionally hidden.  IT was obviously hidden.  The question is whether he (1) didn't think about whether this was a campaign contribution (my guess), (2) thought about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that paying off a mistress was not a campaign expense and therefore campaign funds couldn't be used to pay it nor was it reportable (which seems to me an eminently reasonable conclusion if possibly incorrect) or (3) though about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that it was a campaign expense that the campaign could pay and that he would have to report but decided he'd rather break the law and pay for it personally (which seems unlikely to me). 


Nope - again!  Ignorance of the law is not a legal defense. It is immaterial whether DJT (1) didn't think about it, or (2) decided (self-justified) that it was ok. The intentional act is all that matters from a legal standpoint, and you yourself have argued that he clearly hid these payments both at the time and for months afterwards. If the allegations being made by Cohen and others are true, Trump broke the law through a series of deliberate, pre-meditated actions, and then continued to obfuscate his deeds for months.

These kinds of koo-koo defenses are tried and fail all the time, particularly with white collared crimes.  "I was owed" or "I didn't know it was against the law" or "I'm not the only one in my industry/company/department". The fact that this has been ongoing for over a year negates any possibility that this could be a one-off or that he had been meaning to correct the campaign filings.

Personally I think the most likely explanation is one you didn't put forth: (4) - He assumed he would never get caught because he's got his loyal 'fixer' and corporation to hide it all - after all he's not releasing his taxes and the Trump Organization is a private entity that doesn't have the reporting requirements of the public firms.

I've never argued that mens rea applied to knowledge of the law.  I've explicitly pointed out that it doesn't and the comment I was responding to specifically pointed out that it doesn't and was looking at the public opinion/perception angle. 

« Last Edit: August 24, 2018, 02:11:08 PM by Jrr85 »

sequoia

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 544
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3865 on: August 24, 2018, 02:57:31 PM »
...and can we realize that paying for sex (as Trump has been implicated in doing) IS actually illegal the states this reportedly happened?

Not if there's a video tape of the sex.  If there was, then it becomes pornography not prostitution and is protected under the first amendment.  :P

Well... this is not an easy choice...

On one hand, I would love love to see how the White House staff spins this.... after alternative facts, fake news, I wonder now what they going to say. Still going to insist there is no affair?

On the other hand.... urgh.... it can not be a pretty sight to watch lmao

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3866 on: August 24, 2018, 03:43:32 PM »
  It's not whether it was intentionally hidden.  IT was obviously hidden.  The question is whether he (1) didn't think about whether this was a campaign contribution (my guess), (2) thought about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that paying off a mistress was not a campaign expense and therefore campaign funds couldn't be used to pay it nor was it reportable (which seems to me an eminently reasonable conclusion if possibly incorrect) or (3) though about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that it was a campaign expense that the campaign could pay and that he would have to report but decided he'd rather break the law and pay for it personally (which seems unlikely to me). 


Nope - again!  Ignorance of the law is not a legal defense. It is immaterial whether DJT (1) didn't think about it, or (2) decided (self-justified) that it was ok. The intentional act is all that matters from a legal standpoint, and you yourself have argued that he clearly hid these payments both at the time and for months afterwards. If the allegations being made by Cohen and others are true, Trump broke the law through a series of deliberate, pre-meditated actions, and then continued to obfuscate his deeds for months.

These kinds of koo-koo defenses are tried and fail all the time, particularly with white collared crimes.  "I was owed" or "I didn't know it was against the law" or "I'm not the only one in my industry/company/department". The fact that this has been ongoing for over a year negates any possibility that this could be a one-off or that he had been meaning to correct the campaign filings.

Personally I think the most likely explanation is one you didn't put forth: (4) - He assumed he would never get caught because he's got his loyal 'fixer' and corporation to hide it all - after all he's not releasing his taxes and the Trump Organization is a private entity that doesn't have the reporting requirements of the public firms.

I've never argued that mens rea applied to knowledge of the law.  I've explicitly pointed out that it doesn't and the comment I was responding to specifically pointed out that it doesn't and was looking at the public opinion/perception angle.
ok - now I am a bit confused on what point(s) you are trying to make.
If you are just trying to point out the 'public opinion/perception angle' that's all fine and good - but earlier readings of your posts seemed to suggest you believe that his payment of former lovers during an active campaign could somehow not be governed by campaign finance laws.  If that's not what you are saying then we've passed each other in the night (so to speak).

Samuel

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 205
  • Location: the slippery slope
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3867 on: August 24, 2018, 03:45:55 PM »
Under oath Cohen has described an ongoing operation, known to and directly involving then candidate Trump, wherein the National Enquirer pursued and purchased rights to the stories of Trump accusers so they could be buried (with one deal hurriedly completed less than 2 weeks before the election). Cohen paid, then billed the Trump organization. The investigators have piles of paper and audio tapes seized from raiding Cohen's office, most of which is still in their back pocket.

Today it was announced both the head of the company that publishes the National Enquirer and the longtime CFO of the Trump Organization have been granted immunity in exchange for their testimony.

Seems clear Trump is firmly in the cross hairs of this investigation. He apparently can't be indicted while in office but can will at least be deposed. Does anyone think he is capable of surviving a deposition on this without perjuring himself? If shown to have committed the same crime Bill Clinton was impeached for can Republican hypocrisy reach truly transcendent heights by excusing him, yet again? Pretty sure I know the answer to that last one.

And this is not even taking into account the deepening Russia investigation (which Cohen asserts he has information related to), or Paul Manafort's potential to fold under the pressure of possibly dying in prison. Interesting times. I think the odds Trump resigns before 2020 are climbing rapidly.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2018, 03:47:54 PM by Samuel »

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3868 on: August 24, 2018, 04:08:22 PM »
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.  If they 'stay the course' it's plainly evident the next 2 years will be filled with lawsuits, plea deals, skeletons from Trump's past (and possibly present) all marinated in whatever racially tinged scandal-de-jour DJT decides to instigate on Twitter at 7am.

Or - door #2 is to acknowledge that Trump's conduct has been at least as bad as Bill Clinton's, when 50 (out of 55) GOP senators voted Clinton 'guilty' during impeachment proceedings. Given what will surely be enthusiastic bipartisan support from Dems, the GOP would have Pence in the WH, and would likely still control at least the Senate for the next two years, possibly the House as well. They could continue with their conservative vision for the US, minus the daily plot twists of this current reality TV S**t-show.   And at this point which seems like an easier campaign to run in 2020  - Pence or Trump.

Mind you, I'm not personally supporting the political leanings of one Mike Pence, I just have a hard time understanding why more people in the GOP don't conclude they could have even more policy 'wins' and control just as much of the federal government if they weren't constantly having to defend the conduct of the current president. The evangelicals should be the first to jump on this train, as they could finally have one of 'their own' and not some hedonistic urban adulterer that's spent more time on Howard Stern than at church.

Jrr85

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1208
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3869 on: August 24, 2018, 04:16:44 PM »
  It's not whether it was intentionally hidden.  IT was obviously hidden.  The question is whether he (1) didn't think about whether this was a campaign contribution (my guess), (2) thought about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that paying off a mistress was not a campaign expense and therefore campaign funds couldn't be used to pay it nor was it reportable (which seems to me an eminently reasonable conclusion if possibly incorrect) or (3) though about whether it was a campaign contribution and determined that it was a campaign expense that the campaign could pay and that he would have to report but decided he'd rather break the law and pay for it personally (which seems unlikely to me). 


Nope - again!  Ignorance of the law is not a legal defense. It is immaterial whether DJT (1) didn't think about it, or (2) decided (self-justified) that it was ok. The intentional act is all that matters from a legal standpoint, and you yourself have argued that he clearly hid these payments both at the time and for months afterwards. If the allegations being made by Cohen and others are true, Trump broke the law through a series of deliberate, pre-meditated actions, and then continued to obfuscate his deeds for months.

These kinds of koo-koo defenses are tried and fail all the time, particularly with white collared crimes.  "I was owed" or "I didn't know it was against the law" or "I'm not the only one in my industry/company/department". The fact that this has been ongoing for over a year negates any possibility that this could be a one-off or that he had been meaning to correct the campaign filings.

Personally I think the most likely explanation is one you didn't put forth: (4) - He assumed he would never get caught because he's got his loyal 'fixer' and corporation to hide it all - after all he's not releasing his taxes and the Trump Organization is a private entity that doesn't have the reporting requirements of the public firms.

I've never argued that mens rea applied to knowledge of the law.  I've explicitly pointed out that it doesn't and the comment I was responding to specifically pointed out that it doesn't and was looking at the public opinion/perception angle.
ok - now I am a bit confused on what point(s) you are trying to make.
If you are just trying to point out the 'public opinion/perception angle' that's all fine and good - but earlier readings of your posts seemed to suggest you believe that his payment of former lovers during an active campaign could somehow not be governed by campaign finance laws.  If that's not what you are saying then we've passed each other in the night (so to speak).

The comment in response to Glennstache was responding to his comment on public perception.

Legally, it is questionable whether hush money to a mistress would constitute a campaign expenditure.  The only analogous case I'm aware of is the John Edwards case.  His arguments basically hung the jury.  His position was much weaker in that campaign contributors made the hush payments.  It was potentially better depending on whether Melania knew about any other affairs before the two in question. 

And again, I suspect that if Trump had treated it as a campaign expenditure and had the campaign pay for it, people would be trying to claim he used campaign funds for personal expenditures.  If he had a risk of prosecution from treating it as a campaign expenditure and also for not treating it as a campaign expenditure, that seems to be pretty obviously a close case. 

Cellista

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 50
  • Location: Maryland
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3870 on: August 24, 2018, 04:58:04 PM »
Quote -
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.  If they 'stay the course' it's plainly evident the next 2 years will be filled with lawsuits, plea deals, skeletons from Trump's past (and possibly present) all marinated in whatever racially tinged scandal-de-jour DJT decides to instigate on Twitter at 7am.

My theory is that they are worried Pence could not win in 2020, whereas Trump can even despite the scandals.  Holding on to the WH is paramount.

Samuel

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 205
  • Location: the slippery slope
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3871 on: August 24, 2018, 05:04:49 PM »
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.  If they 'stay the course' it's plainly evident the next 2 years will be filled with lawsuits, plea deals, skeletons from Trump's past (and possibly present) all marinated in whatever racially tinged scandal-de-jour DJT decides to instigate on Twitter at 7am.

Or - door #2 is to acknowledge that Trump's conduct has been at least as bad as Bill Clinton's, when 50 (out of 55) GOP senators voted Clinton 'guilty' during impeachment proceedings. Given what will surely be enthusiastic bipartisan support from Dems, the GOP would have Pence in the WH, and would likely still control at least the Senate for the next two years, possibly the House as well. They could continue with their conservative vision for the US, minus the daily plot twists of this current reality TV S**t-show.   And at this point which seems like an easier campaign to run in 2020  - Pence or Trump.

Mind you, I'm not personally supporting the political leanings of one Mike Pence, I just have a hard time understanding why more people in the GOP don't conclude they could have even more policy 'wins' and control just as much of the federal government if they weren't constantly having to defend the conduct of the current president. The evangelicals should be the first to jump on this train, as they could finally have one of 'their own' and not some hedonistic urban adulterer that's spent more time on Howard Stern than at church.

I think most Republican politicians are right there with you, but Trump still has a huge portion of the GOP electorate under his spell. Republicans overtly forcing him out or voting to impeach will invite internal civil war. Hopefully their hand will be forced if the house turns blue and Trump's taxes are subpoenaed and leaked. Those must be absolutely radioactive.

If the midterms go strongly Democratic I foresee backroom negotiations in which Trump resigns (far enough ahead of the 2020 election to give someone else a chance to mount a decent campaign) under some convoluted Trumpian rationale that somehow casts him as a victor in this whole debacle. Pence slides in to stabilize things, move forward the GOP agenda as best he can, and pardon Trump as often as is required.

PDXTabs

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 653
  • Age: 35
  • Location: Vancouver, WA, USA
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3872 on: August 24, 2018, 05:41:09 PM »
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.
...
My theory is that they are worried Pence could not win in 2020, whereas Trump can even despite the scandals.  Holding on to the WH is paramount.

My theory is that GOP leadership (read: McConnell) is waiting to see what happens in November. If there is a "blue wave" they might just decide that Trump is more of a liability than an asset and that Pence would happily rubber-stamp anything that McConnell would send him.

scottish

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1187
  • Location: Ottawa
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3873 on: August 24, 2018, 07:09:48 PM »
...and can we realize that paying for sex (as Trump has been implicated in doing) IS actually illegal the states this reportedly happened?

Not if there's a video tape of the sex.  If there was, then it becomes pornography not prostitution and is protected under the first amendment.  :P

ewwww  I think that would be anti-porn people would pay not to see it
Or even think about it.

DarkandStormy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1162
  • Age: 29
  • Location: Midwest, USA
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3874 on: August 25, 2018, 06:49:35 AM »
But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.

This comment is laughably stupid.

1) https://www.cnn.com/2016/11/21/politics/fec-trump-violations/index.html

Quote
he Federal Election Commission is asking the campaign of Donald Trump to correct more than 1,000 errors in its latest financial filing.

The FEC determined that the Trump campaign accepted close to 1,100 donations, which amounted to roughly $1.3 million, that violated one of a handful of campaign finance laws.

Oh look, the Trump Campaign was hit with the same fine as the same fine as the Obama Campaign.  It is essentially an accounting error when donors exceed their personal donation limits and the campaigns don't report them in time.

2) Obama was never *personally* implicated.  Trump IS personally implicated in multiple crimes to influence the 2016 election.

If you can't see the difference - the VAST difference - between the two, then the only thing I can suggest is you take a class on the matter.

accolay

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 818
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3875 on: August 26, 2018, 10:52:42 AM »
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.

It's weird that these so-called "Evangelicals" held their nose and continue to support Trump. Mental gymnastics indeed. Why they wouldn't want Trump out and True Believer Pence as president boggles the mind.

sol

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7205
  • Age: 41
  • Location: Pacific Northwest
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3876 on: August 26, 2018, 11:00:19 AM »
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.

It's weird that these so-called "Evangelicals" held their nose and continue to support Trump. Mental gymnastics indeed. Why they wouldn't want Trump out and True Believer Pence as president boggles the mind.

I think you give them too much credit.  Evangelicals may pretend to be horrified every time their president grabs a pussy, but deep down they love it.  He speaks to their deepest desires.

PDXTabs

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 653
  • Age: 35
  • Location: Vancouver, WA, USA

Johnez

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 887
  • Location: Southern California
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3878 on: August 27, 2018, 02:26:07 AM »
There is a real and true fervor that goes beyond politics in a lot of churches and I am kind of surprised that there hasn't been some major backlash on some of Trump's words and actions. I believe his only saving grace is his complete and total support of Israel. There are lines that can't be crossed, then there is Israel. Pence might be the actual Christian on the office, but Trump is the strongman.

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3879 on: August 27, 2018, 06:29:25 AM »
There is a real and true fervor that goes beyond politics in a lot of churches and I am kind of surprised that there hasn't been some major backlash on some of Trump's words and actions. I believe his only saving grace is his complete and total support of Israel. There are lines that can't be crossed, then there is Israel. Pence might be the actual Christian on the office, but Trump is the strongman.

serious question - why do evangelicals support Israel so much? Neither Jews nor Palestinians are Christian, yet both religions are derived from the same books, with Christianity sitting directly in the middle.

MrDelane

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 495
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3880 on: August 27, 2018, 06:59:15 AM »
serious question - why do evangelicals support Israel so much? Neither Jews nor Palestinians are Christian, yet both religions are derived from the same books, with Christianity sitting directly in the middle.

Because most Christian eschatology calls for the restoration of Israel as a Jewish theocracy prior to the return of their messiah.

Translation:  because they want to encourage the arrival of the end times, apparently.  Something that in any other context would be deemed as completely insane.

Moonwaves

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 927
  • Location: Germany
    • My blog
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3881 on: August 27, 2018, 07:09:16 AM »
serious question - why do evangelicals support Israel so much? Neither Jews nor Palestinians are Christian, yet both religions are derived from the same books, with Christianity sitting directly in the middle.

Because most Christian eschatology calls for the restoration of Israel as a Jewish theocracy prior to the return of their messiah.

Translation:  because they want to encourage the arrival of the end times, apparently.  Something that in any other context would be deemed as completely insane.
I first heard about this a few years ago when I read Bring on the Apolcalypse, a book containing a number of articles written by George Monbiot, and it kind of blew my mind a bit. The original article is from 2004 and is available on his website if anyone is interested: https://www.monbiot.com/2004/04/20/apocalypse-please/

FIPurpose

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 787
  • Location: ME
    • FI With Purpose
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3882 on: August 27, 2018, 07:14:40 AM »
There is a real and true fervor that goes beyond politics in a lot of churches and I am kind of surprised that there hasn't been some major backlash on some of Trump's words and actions. I believe his only saving grace is his complete and total support of Israel. There are lines that can't be crossed, then there is Israel. Pence might be the actual Christian on the office, but Trump is the strongman.

serious question - why do evangelicals support Israel so much? Neither Jews nor Palestinians are Christian, yet both religions are derived from the same books, with Christianity sitting directly in the middle.

Same as the eschatology bit, but it derives from the idea of premillennialism. This is the idea that is presented in the Left Behind series. So while it seems the the popularity of premillennialism itself has gone away, some of the beliefs surrounding it have been "left behind" in a lot of churches' teachings including the restoration of Israel. This has probably most influenced SBC's, Church of God, and has holds in many other pockets of Evangelicals.

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3883 on: August 27, 2018, 07:22:34 AM »

I first heard about this a few years ago when I read Bring on the Apolcalypse, a book containing a number of articles written by George Monbiot, and it kind of blew my mind a bit. The original article is from 2004 and is available on his website if anyone is interested: https://www.monbiot.com/2004/04/20/apocalypse-please/

that's screwed up...

MrDelane

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 495
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3884 on: August 27, 2018, 07:30:04 AM »
that's screwed up...

I mean, I guess... if your definition of 'screwed up' is waiting for a 2000 year old man that you believe is the incarnation of the creator of the universe to return to bring about the end times for humanity after being put to death by humans in order to pay a debt to himself for the perceived transgressions made by the same humans he created.  Then in that case, yeah, I guess it's kind of screwed up.

sol

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7205
  • Age: 41
  • Location: Pacific Northwest
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3885 on: August 27, 2018, 08:41:09 AM »
that's screwed up...

I mean, I guess... if your definition of 'screwed up' is waiting for a 2000 year old man that you believe is the incarnation of the creator of the universe to return to bring about the end times for humanity after being put to death by humans in order to pay a debt to himself for the perceived transgressions made by the same humans he created.  Then in that case, yeah, I guess it's kind of screwed up.

But you have to admit, as zombie stories go it's a pretty good one.

MrDelane

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 495
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3886 on: August 27, 2018, 09:17:59 AM »
But you have to admit, as zombie stories go it's a pretty good one.

True.
I just wish we didn't have large groups of people trying to pass laws based on their favorite zombie story.

As Patton Oswalt said, "I'm glad you like a book."

Glenstache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1963
  • Age: 186
  • Location: Seattle!
  • Target FI date 2027 (maybe?)
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3887 on: August 27, 2018, 10:05:29 AM »
that's screwed up...

I mean, I guess... if your definition of 'screwed up' is waiting for a 2000 year old man that you believe is the incarnation of the creator of the universe to return to bring about the end times for humanity after being put to death by humans in order to pay a debt to himself for the perceived transgressions made by the same humans he created.  Then in that case, yeah, I guess it's kind of screwed up.

But you have to admit, as zombie stories go it's a pretty good one.
I feel like this should be an episode of South Park.

Metta

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 649
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3888 on: August 27, 2018, 12:13:11 PM »
There is a real and true fervor that goes beyond politics in a lot of churches and I am kind of surprised that there hasn't been some major backlash on some of Trump's words and actions. I believe his only saving grace is his complete and total support of Israel. There are lines that can't be crossed, then there is Israel. Pence might be the actual Christian on the office, but Trump is the strongman.

serious question - why do evangelicals support Israel so much? Neither Jews nor Palestinians are Christian, yet both religions are derived from the same books, with Christianity sitting directly in the middle.

I understand the thrust of the question and I also find Evangelicals' support of Israeli hardliners very troubling, so I get what you are asking. However, I want to point out that there are Palestinian Christians. In fact, Hanan Ashrawi who has represented Palestinians in talks and who took part in the Intifada is a Palestinian Christian. I believe that Palestinian Christians represent about 8 percent of Israeli Palestinians and about 1 percent of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. For the most part, I believe that they are not Evangelical Christians so perhaps Evangelicals don't count them as Christians? (I don't really understand how Christians think about identity.)

The problems in the Middle East cannot be simply boiled down to religious wars (though religion plays a very significant part).

FIPurpose

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 787
  • Location: ME
    • FI With Purpose
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3889 on: August 28, 2018, 07:04:28 AM »
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.

It's weird that these so-called "Evangelicals" held their nose and continue to support Trump. Mental gymnastics indeed. Why they wouldn't want Trump out and True Believer Pence as president boggles the mind.

There's a piece of me that wonders:

The constitution technically allows for a person to be president for up to 10 years. So if Pence becomes president after midterms, he is still eligible for 2 more terms.

Just Joe

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2092
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3890 on: August 28, 2018, 07:30:15 AM »
Friend was telling me that the WH flag was up and half-mast a couple of times yesterday. Was their internal conflict within the staff and with the President on the topic? I haven't watched the news in the past 24 hours. Just heard about it this morn.

partgypsy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2295
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3891 on: August 28, 2018, 07:35:43 AM »
Friend was telling me that the WH flag was up and half-mast a couple of times yesterday. Was their internal conflict within the staff and with the President on the topic? I haven't watched the news in the past 24 hours. Just heard about it this morn.

If anything was needed to show how small and petty Trump is as a man, the whole shenanigans over McCain proves it.

Dabnasty

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1164
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3892 on: August 28, 2018, 08:12:57 AM »
Friend was telling me that the WH flag was up and half-mast a couple of times yesterday. Was their internal conflict within the staff and with the President on the topic? I haven't watched the news in the past 24 hours. Just heard about it this morn.

If anything was needed to show how small and petty Trump is as a man, the whole shenanigans over McCain proves it.

Nope, nothing more was needed :) I think it's been clear since well before he was president.

Quote
"To this day, I receive the occasional envelope from Trump. There is always a photo of him—generally a tear sheet from a magazine. On all of them he has circled his hand in gold Sharpie in a valiant effort to highlight the length of his fingers," Carter wrote. "I almost feel sorry for the poor fellow because, to me, the fingers still look abnormally stubby."

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/history-donald-trump-small-hands-insult/story?id=37395515
« Last Edit: August 28, 2018, 08:17:25 AM by Dabnasty »

Jrr85

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1208
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3893 on: August 28, 2018, 08:16:13 AM »
But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.

This comment is laughably stupid.

1) https://www.cnn.com/2016/11/21/politics/fec-trump-violations/index.html

Quote
he Federal Election Commission is asking the campaign of Donald Trump to correct more than 1,000 errors in its latest financial filing.

The FEC determined that the Trump campaign accepted close to 1,100 donations, which amounted to roughly $1.3 million, that violated one of a handful of campaign finance laws.

Oh look, the Trump Campaign was hit with the same fine as the same fine as the Obama Campaign.  It is essentially an accounting error when donors exceed their personal donation limits and the campaigns don't report them in time.

2) Obama was never *personally* implicated.  Trump IS personally implicated in multiple crimes to influence the 2016 election.

If you can't see the difference - the VAST difference - between the two, then the only thing I can suggest is you take a class on the matter.
  Or maybe you could try reading comprehension? 

And Trump is not implicated by any known evidence in "crimes to influence the 2016 election".  He potentially committed a reporting violation depending on whether the payment of hush money to a mistress is a valid campaign expenditure. 

Mueller is squeezing a lot of people on process crimes and on substantive crimes not related to the election, so if his targets know anything, it will come out.  But at least from what he has released publicly (and granted he may just be keeping things quiet until he has squeezed everybody he can and then will release everything at once), he doesn't have a single crime involving the election. 


talltexan

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1930
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3894 on: August 28, 2018, 08:51:26 AM »
Quote -
Honestly, I'm starting to openly wonder why the GOP doesn't collectively dump Trump and opt for Pence.  If they 'stay the course' it's plainly evident the next 2 years will be filled with lawsuits, plea deals, skeletons from Trump's past (and possibly present) all marinated in whatever racially tinged scandal-de-jour DJT decides to instigate on Twitter at 7am.

My theory is that they are worried Pence could not win in 2020, whereas Trump can even despite the scandals.  Holding on to the WH is paramount.

I spent a year reading Breitbart--which was difficult for me as a Liberal Technocrat--but I came to the conclusion that Trump's base consider Trump overwhelmingly preferable to Pence. The GOP attempting something like this would be seen as capitulation.

Wexler

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 369
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3895 on: August 28, 2018, 08:59:12 AM »
But legally, what people are talking about is the same, with the potential difference that Obama was going to comply but did not do so timely, and Trump through oversight or misinterpretation, was not going to comply at all.

This comment is laughably stupid.

1) https://www.cnn.com/2016/11/21/politics/fec-trump-violations/index.html

Quote
he Federal Election Commission is asking the campaign of Donald Trump to correct more than 1,000 errors in its latest financial filing.

The FEC determined that the Trump campaign accepted close to 1,100 donations, which amounted to roughly $1.3 million, that violated one of a handful of campaign finance laws.

Oh look, the Trump Campaign was hit with the same fine as the same fine as the Obama Campaign.  It is essentially an accounting error when donors exceed their personal donation limits and the campaigns don't report them in time.

2) Obama was never *personally* implicated.  Trump IS personally implicated in multiple crimes to influence the 2016 election.

If you can't see the difference - the VAST difference - between the two, then the only thing I can suggest is you take a class on the matter.
  Or maybe you could try reading comprehension? 

And Trump is not implicated by any known evidence in "crimes to influence the 2016 election".  He potentially committed a reporting violation depending on whether the payment of hush money to a mistress is a valid campaign expenditure. 

Mueller is squeezing a lot of people on process crimes and on substantive crimes not related to the election, so if his targets know anything, it will come out.  But at least from what he has released publicly (and granted he may just be keeping things quiet until he has squeezed everybody he can and then will release everything at once), he doesn't have a single crime involving the election.

I think we comprehend just fine.  We are just pointing out that looking at the issue from 10,000 feet is self-serving.  Vehicular manslaughter and speeding tickets are both just traffic violations at 10,000 feet.  A paper cut and a severing of a leg at the knee are both just injuries.  You have zoomed so far out because it's the only way to fix the view so that you can get Obama and Trump in the same frame for a healthy serving of whataboutism.  Paying off your mistress and failing to report donations within 48 hours are just reporting issues.  Isn't the view great from up here?  I can't see the swamp at all.

But if you move in from 10,000 feet, you've got civil vs. criminal issues.  Cohen is facing a criminal guilty plea while the Obama campaign faced a civil fine.  So, the courts don't really think they are the same thing. Also, you can zoom out all you want, but I think the public won't buy it either.  Even a Trump voter can understand that not getting your TPS reports done is not really in the same league as paying off your porn star mistress. 

sol

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7205
  • Age: 41
  • Location: Pacific Northwest
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3896 on: August 28, 2018, 09:37:04 AM »
And Trump is not implicated by any known evidence in "crimes to influence the 2016 election".

Do you mean any known evidence besides Cohen's plea?  Because Cohen's testimony directly implicates the president in multiple crimes to influence the 2016 election.

Quote
He potentially committed a reporting violation depending on whether the payment of hush money to a mistress is a valid campaign expenditure. 

The problem here isn't the marital infidelity and it isn't the hush money to the multiple mistresses.  The problem is conspiracy to suppress campaign contributions by funneling the money through a shell corporation, which is a felony, and then directing his lawyer to lie to a bank in order to get a loan, which is also a felony, in order to pay the hush money.  See the difference yet?  The porn mistress hush money itself isn't a crime (except against god, if you lean that way), but the attempted cover-up is a criminal conspiracy directed by Donald Trump personally, and involved multiple crimes.  Crimes committed for the specific purpose of influencing the election. 

Quote
he doesn't have a single crime involving the election.

You keep saying that.  I suggest you read Cohen's plea, it might change your mind.  The tl:dr version is that the last part says "I am guilty of conspiring with Donald Trump to illegally influence the election."

And it's not like Trump hasn't publicly admitted to this already.  He admits he illegally paid hush money to multiple mistresses, and we have the audio recordings of him literally conspiring to commit both felonies, with a known criminal, for the purpose of influencing the election.  We have the bank records that verify the crime was then committed.  We have the mistresses confirming it, and the lawyer pleading to it, and the Trump organization executives who helped perpetrate the crime have all been granted immunity.  This evidence (that you claim doesn't exist?) isn't exactly secret, but for some reason Trump seems to think he is above the law on this one.

This is a pretty rock solid case.  Trump will either have to be pardoned, or he'll be charged.  Because he definitely did it.  Whether you like him as a president or not, he broke multiple federal laws and he should be accountable for that.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2018, 01:02:07 PM by sol »

nereo

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8469
  • Location: la belle province
    • Here's how you can support science today:
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3897 on: August 28, 2018, 11:49:14 AM »
And Trump is not implicated by any known evidence in "crimes to influence the 2016 election".

Do you mean any known evidence besides Cohen's plea?  Because Cohen's testimony directly implicates the president in multiple crimes to influence the 2016 election.


@Jrr85 - you appear to have missed the following: "Guilty your honor. In coordination with and at the direction of a candidate for federal office [Trump], I participated in this conduct... for the purpose of influencing the election" - Michael Cohen under oath, August 21, 2018

This is what we are talking about when we say the president has been implicated in crimes to influence the 2016 Presidential election.

talltexan

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1930
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3898 on: August 28, 2018, 01:15:37 PM »
I think one reason Trump-supporters have such a difficult time believing in these Russia/Cohen allegations is that they cannot appreciate someone's mind about Hillary Clinton being changed by one facebook post, or someone's mind about Donald Trump being changed by one more extra-marital affair.

But I don't think the Cohen payments were about influencing voters: in mid-October, I think Michael Cohen was trying to keep the allegations about Daniels and McDougal from causing Mike Pence to leave the ticket.

You can read about how vile and crude Pence's wife found Trump here: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2018/01/gods-plan-for-mike-pence/546569/

When the Access Hollywood tape broke, I think Pence was seriously concerned that even more allegations about Trump's sex life could start coming out.

There's reporting that a lot of behind-the-scenes activity was happening as RNC and big-money donors were trying to figure out how to salvage the election, for example: https://www.businessinsider.com/mike-pence-priebus-coup-replace-trump-access-hollywood-tape-2017-12

Ultimately, Pence capitulated, and yoked himself to Trump: https://thinkprogress.org/mike-pence-trump-comments-michelle-obama-34721a9113b7/

Might he have reconsidered if he'd known about the affairs with Daniels? This is what Cohen was protecting against: keeping Mike Pence and--perhaps--establishment Republicans from removing Trump from the race.

Glenstache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1963
  • Age: 186
  • Location: Seattle!
  • Target FI date 2027 (maybe?)
Re: So Let's Speculate about the Future of a Full Trump Presidency...
« Reply #3899 on: August 28, 2018, 01:25:13 PM »
I think one reason Trump-supporters have such a difficult time believing in these Russia/Cohen allegations is that they cannot appreciate someone's mind about Hillary Clinton being changed by one facebook post, or someone's mind about Donald Trump being changed by one more extra-marital affair.

But I don't think the Cohen payments were about influencing voters: in mid-October, I think Michael Cohen was trying to keep the allegations about Daniels and McDougal from causing Mike Pence to leave the ticket.

You can read about how vile and crude Pence's wife found Trump here: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2018/01/gods-plan-for-mike-pence/546569/

When the Access Hollywood tape broke, I think Pence was seriously concerned that even more allegations about Trump's sex life could start coming out.

There's reporting that a lot of behind-the-scenes activity was happening as RNC and big-money donors were trying to figure out how to salvage the election, for example: https://www.businessinsider.com/mike-pence-priebus-coup-replace-trump-access-hollywood-tape-2017-12

Ultimately, Pence capitulated, and yoked himself to Trump: https://thinkprogress.org/mike-pence-trump-comments-michelle-obama-34721a9113b7/

Might he have reconsidered if he'd known about the affairs with Daniels? This is what Cohen was protecting against: keeping Mike Pence and--perhaps--establishment Republicans from removing Trump from the race.

... which would have resulted in an almost guaranteed loss in November. The payments were to keep the genie in the bottle in a close election, to suppress information that would have damaged Trump's chance of winning.

I wonder if Mike Pence fancies himself to be some sort of Job character instead of one who has simply sold his soul for power?