We’re now into day three of the Trump-Cohen bribery scandal, and the details continue to get uglier. It turns out the firm that paid half a million dollars to Michael Cohen really is as controlled by a Russian oligarch as we thought. It also turns out, based on AT&T’s own unearthed internal documents, that it paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to Cohen with the specific intent of influencing Donald Trump’s policy decisions that affected the company. Trump’s response is telling.
Here’s a partial list of the things that Donald Trump has ranted about on Twitter over the past three days: Chuck Schumer, James Comey, the CIA, the New York Times, Candace Owens, press credentials, Iran, John Kerry, Gina Haspel, Lisa Page, and thirteen Democrats who don’t exist. In amongst all of that, Trump hasn’t even bothered to try to refute any of the bribery allegations. He hasn’t even mentioned Michael Cohen. There’s a reason for this.
Trump has publicly pushed back against several of his other criminal scandals, including the Trump-Russia treason scandal. In the process he’s made up one lie after another about how he’s innocent, and his political adversaries somehow committed the real crime by daring to expose his crimes. Many of Trump’s tweets on these matters have been self incriminating, and will eventually be used against him at trial, but he hasn’t seemed to understand or care about that. Yet when it comes to the bribery charges, it’s a whole different ballgame.
Before it was revealed that Michael Cohen was taking bribes on Donald Trump’s behalf, Trump did try to publicly defend the reimbursements he sent to Cohen for the Stormy Daniels payoff. He also had Rudy Giuliani rambling about it on every television channel. But now we know Trump has been personally on the take from the Kremlin and various U.S. companies, he’s scared to death to even mention it. That alone is particularly telling.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report