Last week Special Counsel Robert Mueller and Michael Cohen dropped a bombshell about Donald Trump having been involved in a plot with the Russians during the election to build Trump Tower Moscow. Then came a stunning BuzzFeed report about the project including a free penthouse for Russian President Vladimir Putin. Turns out it’s the real thing after all.
It’s not that BuzzFeed isn’t to be believed; it’s broken a number of aspects of the Trump-Russia scandal that have ultimately proven to be true. It’s just that, for a story this outrageous and crucial, it helps to have additional independent verification. Sure enough, ABC News is now confirming the same story from its own sources. This means it’s the real deal. So now what?
As of now we only have public confirmation that, even as Team Trump was plotting with the Russians to build Trump Tower Moscow, Team Trump was internally plotting to offer a free penthouse to Putin. This was part of a criminal election conspiracy with a foreign enemy of the United States either way. But having proof of the penthouse offer would make it far easier to also get felony bribery charges to stick. But here’s the key thing.
Michael Cohen isn’t talking to the media about this, but he has already given everything he knows to Robert Mueller. In the end, all that matters is what Mueller has, and what he can prove. Cohen consistently recorded his phone calls with Donald Trump, without Trump’s knowledge. Mueller has those recordings as well. Now we know that Cohen and his associates were plotting to give Putin a free penthouse. Mueller surely knows even more about it.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report