Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is said to be close to making a decision about indicting Donald Trump in the Stormy Daniels hush money case. Trump is alleged to have committed campaign finance violations related to his paying the adult film star $130,000.00 to buy her silence prior to the 2016 presidential election
This is only one of the many pending civil and criminal cases that are cluttering Trump’s legal calendar. He is also being investigated by the New York state Attorney General, the District Attorney of Fulton County, Georgia, and a federal special prosecutor, Jack Smith, probing a pair of offenses: his theft and hoarding of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago, and his role in inciting the January 6th insurrection. Trump is taking these matters seriously, as is evident in his fierce and fear-driven reactions.
Trump is actually so frightened by the legal peril he is facing that he dispatched his attorney, Joe Tacopina, to MSNBC’s “The Beat, with Ari Melber.” Trump and his lawyers must be awfully desperate to agree to an interview on MSNBC, a network that he regards as fake news delivered by radical communists on witch hunts.
Melber gave Tacopina more than ample time to state his case on behalf of Trump. the problem is that he doesn’t have a coherent case to make. And that came out during the following exchange…
Melber: If all of what you say is true…
Tacopina: It is.
Melber: Then why was Trump hiding and lying about it at the time?
Tacopina: If that’s what you’re gonna consider a lie. A lie to me is something material, under oath, in a proceeding. Here’s why it was not a lie. It was a confidential settlement, so if he acknowledged that, he would be violating the confidential settlement. So, is it the truth? Of course it’s not the truth. Was he supposed to tell the truth? He would be in violation of the agreement if he told the truth. So, by him doing that, by him doing that he was abiding by, not only his rights but Stormy Daniels’ rights.
Melber: It seems like we’re drawing some blood here because you’re having a strong reaction. He did lie about it, and in a confidential settlement you can easily say, “No comment” or “I’m not getting into it.”
Trump attorney Joe Tacopina on MSNBC (!) claims Trump's lies about the Stormy Daniels hush payment weren't actually lies because he wasn't under oath and also he didn't want to violate a confidentiality clause pic.twitter.com/fryQdiASe2
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 14, 2023
Melber is right. Trump could have have said “no comment” or declined to respond, rather than to blatantly lie to everyone. But more problematic for Trump (since lying is no big deal for him) is that his lawyer’s excuse for lying was to openly admit that he did, in fact, lie. “Of course it’s not the truth,” Tacopina said. But he claims that he doesn’t consider it to be a lie because it wasn’t said under oath, and because Trump was constrained from disclosing any details of his confidential settlement with Daniels.
However, if it would be a lie had it been said under oath, or absent a non-disclosure agreement, then it’s still a lie. If someone who never attended college says they graduated from Harvard, they are lying whether or not they are under oath or subject to a confidentiality agreement. They may not be committing perjury or breach of contract, but they are lying.
Trump’s lies were in furtherance of a criminal act. He was trying to cover up his illegal campaign expenditures. And now his attorney just conceded that Trump is guilty. He affirmed Daniels’ allegations against him. And he effectively handed a legal victory to the Manhattan District Attorney.
Trump’s next move will likely be to fire his attorney, who he’ll accuse of being a “woke” RINO who is aligned with Antifa and paid by by George Soros. Because he sure doesn’t have any credible legal course of action to take.
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