I am going to answer this question because I believe it is sincere, and because I think the question goes to the heart of the problem.
By problem I mean this: How it was that “her emails” sank so deeply into the public consciousness . . .
1/ . . . that a large percentage of the population—even those who knew that no crime was involved—came to feel a nagging doubt.
At the same time, multiple federal felonies for which there is overwhelming evidence can slide under the radar.
2/ This is because a simple lie is easier to spread than a complex truth, and crimes involving fraud and deception are always a bit complicated.
The hush payment felonies are a relatively simple crimes compared, say to the TrumpRussia conspiracy.
3/ But because the evidence was dribbled out over many months, it’s hard for most people going about their lives and not hanging on every news item to see the connections.
So here we go. How we can be fairly certain that the payments were hush money.
4/ Attached to this legal document is a copy of the contract Stormy Daniel signed. http://tmz.vo.llnwd.net/o28/newsdesk/tmz_documents/stormy-daniels-sues-trump-redacted.pdf ….
David Dennison in the contract was later (in court) revealed to be Donald Trump. Peggy Peterson is Stormy Daniels. https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/articles/2018-03-07/trump-is-called-david-dennison-in-stormy-daniels-lawsuit-meet-the-real-one …
5/ According to court filings (which were not contested as to their truth) Michael Cohen paid $130K to Daniels to keep her quiet.
Dennison-Trump never signed the contract. This was to give him deniability.
The story as related to Trump kept evolving.
6/ Initially Trump said he knew nothing about the payment; Cohen did it without telling him. Then he acknowledged that he knew about the payments, but said it wasn’t a crime.
7/ Cohen’s latest bombshell is that he has signed checks from the Trumps to back up his story that Trump personally reimbursed him for the $130K grossed up so Cohen doesn’t have to pay the taxes and end up with less.
8/ The initial story was that the 2017 payments were made pursuant to a retainer agreement. Cohen says no such contract-agreement exists.
That, John, is how we know.
See how hard that is to fit into a soundbite?
I can't see how "His checks!" can have the ring of "her emails!"
You can follow @Teri_Kanefield.
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