Ever since Donald Trump’s foray into politics began, the National Enquirer has consistently tried to steer public opinion in Trump’s direction. The tabloid rag has used its front page to push phony stories about Trump’s opponents, while playing up Trump to be some kind of hero. We’ve since learned that the Enquirer was also exclusively buying up the stories of Trump’s mistresses and accusers, in order to bury those stories. Now things have taken a major turn.
The Feds are investigating Donald Trump’s longtime fixer Michael Cohen on a number of matters, including his role in paying off Trump’s mistresses during the election, in apparent violation of campaign finance laws. The Feds are also investigating the payouts made by the National Enquirer; if those payouts were coordinated with the Trump team during the election, then they were also illegal. Now that Cohen is facing imminent criminal charges, the Enquirer just did something notable.
Guess who is now being attacked on the front page of the National Enquirer. It’s not Stormy Daniels. It’s not her attorney Michael Avenatti. It’s not even Hillary Clinton or any of Trump’s other usual favorite targets. Instead the Enquirer is attacking Michael Cohen. Its headline proclaims “Payoffs & Threats Exposed: Trump’s Fixer’s Secrets & Lies!” In other words, they’re throwing Cohen under the bus. At the bottom of their front page they’re falsely claiming Trump passed a polygraph test “proving no Russia collusion,” so they’re not really throwing Trump under the bus, just Cohen.
There are a few different ways to interpret this. The National Enquirer could be throwing Michael Cohen under the bus in a coordinated effort with Donald Trump, or because they simply think it’s what Trump would want. Or they could be trying to distance themselves from Cohen because they’re worried they’ll end up facing criminal charges over their association with Cohen. We’ll see. But for once, it’s worth keeping an eye on what the National Enquirer does with its front page next.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report