On Wednesday, CNN published emails which very much appeared to reveal that Rudy Giuliani had instructed attorney Robert Costello to not so subtly dangle a pardon in Michael Cohen’s face. This would represent felony obstruction of justice on the part of Giuliani and Costello, and the emails sure read like a smoking gun that could send them both away. So naturally, Team Trump is now relying on its must absurd excuse to date.
The emails show that Robert Costello told Michael Cohen that he should “sleep well tonight” because he’s got “friends in high places.” In other words, Cohen had nothing to worry about because Donald Trump was going to step in and pardon him, right? Not according to Costello, who is now blaming it all on – we can’t make this up – a Garth Brooks song.
Costello is telling the Daily Beast that while these published emails are indeed real, he wasn’t dangling a pardon, he was just referencing the song “Friends In Low Places.” No really, this is his defense. And this guy is a lawyer, so if there were a less ridiculous and desperate defense to be had, then he’d be floating that instead. Garth Brooks is apparently the best defense available, which means he’s in a really bad situation.
We’ll see what happens. Our guess is that once everyone finishes laughing at the Garth Brooks defense, Costello will conclude that he has little choice but to cut a plea deal against Rudy Giuliani, who would in turn face pressure to cut a deal against Donald Trump. That is, of course, unless Rudy and Costello are naive enough to fall for the same Trump pardon scam that they tried to play on Michael Cohen. To quote The Office, it’s about to get all stupid up in here.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report