Cohen pleads guilty to lying to Congress about negotiating with Russia onbehalf of Individual 1 & family for the Moscow Project all through the election.
The doc is here: https://www.lawfareblog.com/document-michael-cohen-plea-documents-mueller-probe …
1 - 6 detail the lies. The doc gets good at #7: The truth.
1/ Assumptions I’m making:
Individual 1: Trump
Individual 2: Sater (or Stone?)
Moscow Project =Trump Tower Moscow
Ok: the Cliff notes:
Cohen lied to protect Trump, so it wouldn't look like Trump negotiated Trump Tower Moscow through the election.
2/ Jan 14 2016 & Jan 16, 2016: Cohen emailed Russian Official’s office asking for help with the Moscow Project.
Jan. 20, personal assistant to Russian Official asked Cohen to call using a Moscow based number she provided.
3/ Jan 21: Sater told Cohen “It’s about [Putin] they called today.”
On May 4, 2016, Sater wrote to Cohen, discussing whether Cohen’s trip to Moscow to negotiate the project would occur before or after the convention.
4/ On May 5, Sater told Cohen that Cohen had been invited to Moscow to meet with Putin or the Russian prime minister.
Sater said: “anything you want to discuss including dates and subjects are on the table to discuss.”
5/ As late as June 2016, Cohen and Water discussed efforts to get gov’t approval for the project.
This appears to be as late as June, but 7(a) doesn’t make the dates completely clear: Cohen discussed the progress of Trump Moscow with Trump on more than. . .
6/ . . . the three occasions he mentioned to the Senate.
This appears from 7(a) to be as late as June 2016:
Cohen briefed Trump family members* about the project.
Yup, that's a bombshell. (Where's the bomb emoticon? Found it!) 💣
7/ After much discussion between Sater and Cohen about Cohen's Moscow Trip, Cohen and Sater meet in Trump Tower lobby on June 14, 2016. Cohen then tells Sater he won't be making the trip.
Hmm. 🤔 Wasn't the big Trump Tower meeting on June 9? 🤔
Seems there's more to this story.
8/ In court, Cohen said “I made these statements to be consistent with [Trump’s] political messaging and to be loyal to [Trump] (He said Individual 1)
If Trump asked him to do it, that would be suborning perjury.
9/ My take:
As with all the plea deals and indictments so far, there are obviously key details left out — details that the prosecutors know but are not yet ready to divulge.
Until now, they've carefully avoided naming Trump or Trump family.
10/ It was easy to read between the lines, but I tend not to do that. I like the facts on the table before I make assumptions. What comes out of an FBI investigation will be much more trustworthy than even the best newspaper reporting because a prosecutor is going on the line.
11/ Now, Mueller has poked the bear. I expect things to go quickly now.
I wish I could edit Tweet 1: We don't have evidence of Trump Moscow dealings "all" through the election, but until just after the Trump Tower meeting. However . . .
12/ . . . there is clearly a link between the two events, leading me to suspect that communication with Moscow did not end, but morphed into something else.
Also on my mind was the Steele Dossier giving Cohen's trip to Prague in August 2016.
* ha my most most ridiculous typing error: Water should be Sater.
I usually assert the keyboard defense (my keyboard hates me). This time I admit to reading the document AS I typed my notes. And you'll notice "s" and "w" are close together on the keyboard . . .
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