Evening Edition - December 14

December 14, 2018

A couple of excellent points about the politicians who are trying to criminalize everything Donald Trump ever did or allegedly thought about doing, while they've spent their careers doing it all and worse, and paying for it with the taxpayers' money.  They're like the crooked cop in "Casablanca" who's shocked to discover there's gambling at Rick's as he pockets his winnings.

https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/315834/

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President Trump is understandably “trump-eting" a story in The Daily Signal by former Federal Election Commissioner Hans von Spakovsky.  It’s headlined “Trump’s Ex-Lawyer Didn’t Violate Campaign Finance Laws, and Neither Did the President” and makes the case that Trump is in the clear, saying that “the Cohen guilty pleas are likely irrelevant to the fate of President Trump.”

Here’s the Readers Digest version of why the payments weren’t violations:  “FECA (the Federal Election Campaign Act) specifically says that campaign-related expenses do not include any expenditures ‘used to fulfill any commitment, obligation, or expense of a person that would exist irrespective of the candidate’s election campaign...Given Trump’s celebrity status, the potential liability to these women existed ‘irrespective of the candidate’s election campaign’...Just as important...How can Cohen or anyone else involved in these payments be charged with a ‘knowing and willful’ violation of the law by facilitating these payments when numerous campaign finance lawyers, federal election commissioners, and the Federal Election Commission itself have all publicly opined that such payments do not violate the law in the first place?  It seems pretty clear that the Federal Election Campaign Act wasn’t meant to cover what Cohen pleaded guilty to, which is why the [John] Edwards prosecution failed.”

If you’d like to get into the weeds on this, I recommend the original article in the Daily Signal.  Von Spakovsky echoes what FOX legal analyst Gregg Jarrett has been saying all along:  that Cohen was induced to plead guilty to non-crimes.  The assumption in Cohen’s case that these were crimes is not in any way binding on President Trump.  In von Spakovsky’s words, even if Trump told Cohen to make the payments, “it would be impossible for Trump to have violated campaign finance law by directing Cohen to take a perfectly legal action.”

https://www.dailysignal.com/2018/12/11/cohen-didnt-violate-campaign-finance-laws-and-neither-did-trump/

On the other hand, Judge Andrew Napolitano, offering his opinion on FOX News with Bret Beier, said it still appears campaign laws were willfully broken, noting that the “sophisticated, deceptive subterfuge” employed by Cohen to hide what he was doing shows that he didn’t just make an honest mistake.  Napolitano said the judge in the case seems to think the payments were made by Cohen to help the campaign and were not reported.  Now, I’m not a lawyer, but what Napolitano said doesn’t necessarily mean that Trump was thinking of the payments that way.  Even if Cohen says he was, I would think that Cohen, after being induced by prosecutors to implicate Trump to save his own skin, and after having been revealed as thoroughly unethical and dishonest, is not by any stretch of the imagination a trustworthy witness.  (Not sure what’s going on with Napolitano these days, but whatever it is has made him a weirdly welcome afternoon guest for Shepard Smith.)

Since making payments as part of non-disclosure agreements is not criminal (even if it happens to be taking place during a campaign), it seems to me that if Cohen was trying to hide the nature of these payments from the FEC, he was simply acting by reflex but doing something unnecessary.  It seems likely that, at least regarding these payments, the one thing Cohen is really guilty of is “acting guilty.”

I would add one other thing that absolutely puts the final nail in the coffin of Cohen’s trustworthiness as a witness:  He’s now facing a three-year sentence, with the understanding that IF HE CONTINUES TO COOPERATE, that sentence may be reduced.  So prosecutors are not through with Cohen.  Once he actually reports to prison in March and finds out what it’s like in there, it will be very much in his own interest now to “sing” --- or to “compose.”  In fact, he recently said that he’s going to tell “everything he knows” about Trump. (He showed long ago that he had no ethics when it came to attorney-client privilege.)  What could be more convenient for witch-hunters?

Eli Lake of Bloomberg Opinion, who, like me, admits that he is not a lawyer, pointed out that this process is primarily a political one, and that “this is not going to be something that you can impeach him for.”  This is not collusion with Russia, and the political case can only be made with “hard-core partisans.”  Agreed, but that doesn’t mean the hard-core partisans won’t do whatever they have to do to make it happen.  Democrats can impeach him for anything they want; it will be the political equivalent of a frivolous lawsuit.  And when the Senate gets it, they can essentially treat it just like one of those.

Tom Bevan, political analyst and executive editor of Real Clear Politics, called the campaign finance kerfluffle the same thing I do:  “a pretext for impeachment.”  Anything will do.  This is just going to be “an exercise in poltics,” he said, because the Senate, without a reason for “mass defections,” will not vote to convict.  Gosh, he sounds like me.

Napolitano observed that it’s the New York prosecutors who seem especially aggressive towards Trump.  It’s hardly surprising that they are.  Trump’s from New York himself and has a long history of doing business there.  In fact, on Wednesday, Letitia James, the new attorney general for New York State stood on the courthouse steps and proclaimed to eager reporters that her office plans to launch “sweeping investigations” into President Trump, his family and “anyone” in his circle who may have violated the law.  “We will use every area of the law to investigate President Trump and his business transactions, and those of his family as well."  To do this, she says she’s enlisting the help of prosecutorial heavy-hitters like...Loretta Lynch.

Can you say “witch hunt”?  Trump may be prone to exaggeration, but in this case he isn’t exaggerating at all.

https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2018/12/12/new-york-ag-announces-plans-to-weaponize-office-to-target-political-opposition/#more-157686

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Voters are already learning that everything Democrats said to get Americans to vote for them was a lie: of course, they’re going to launch endless, money-wasting, vindictive partisan investigations of political enemies; of course, they’re going to vote to impeach President Trump for the high crime of beating them in 2016, no matter how much it harms the economy and job creation; and of course, they’re going to try to raise taxes, jack up spending, increase government, bring back pork-barrel vote buying and favors for special interests, and try to take away your guns, free speech and religious freedoms.  Anyone who voted for them expecting something different must feel like Charlie Brown lying on his back after Lucy yanked away the football for the 247th time.

 

Some of us are immune to Democratic promises that “this time, they’ve changed,” having lived through that spiel too many times before. Like the 2006 election, when Nancy Pelosi swore that the Party had learned its lesson, and they were no longer ideologically-driven “tax and spenders” but would be fiscally responsible and pro-business. Americans fell for it like Charlie Brown, she became Speaker, and one year later, the deficit was 2-1/2 times bigger. 

 

Now, add one more broken promise to the list: despite all that hot gas about demanding new leadership from both the young “progressive” firebrands and the faux “moderate centrist” Democratic candidates, just as I’ve told you for ages, it’s virtually a certainty that Rep. Pelosi will be House Speaker again.  Wednesday, she gained more votes from Democrats by agreeing to a term limit deal that would hold her to four years as Speaker, so she would have to step down in 2022.

 

The part that goes unsaid: She’ll be 82 years old in 2022, and might actually want to leave anyway.  Also, the deal doesn’t include the time she’s already served as Speaker, so her “four-year limit” will actually let her serve eight loooooong years as Speaker.  Finally, if you really think that after another four years of digging in and solidifying her power, that she’s going to be held to any four-year-old oral agreement to step down, you’re delusional (as Lucy said to Charlie Brown, “Funny thing about this document…It was never notarized.”)

 

In fact, there is only one way to keep Nancy Pelosi from being the Speaker of the House from now until they carry her out feet first, if that’s what she wants. That is for Americans to come to their senses and save their country by voting the Democrats far out of power again in 2020.  Even then, if you think she won’t become the House Minority Leader again, then I have a football I’d be happy to hold while you kick it.

 

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2018/12/13/nancy-pelosi-crushes-rebellion-with-term-limit-deal/

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From the archives: a reminder of what happened the last time Gen. Flynn’s judge, Emmet Sullivan, was presented with a group of prosecutors who were plainly trying to railroad a defendant with a partisan charge and keep the court from seeing any evidence of their misconduct.  Let us hope history repeats itself. 

 

http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/04/07/ted.stevens/index.html

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Comments 1-25 of 26

  • Dusty Hickey

    12/16/2018 10:31 PM

    Cohen is a disaster as an attorney and tried to protect all the other things he did by trying to pull Pres Trump in to his wheeling and dealing. Did he not say that had to borrow money to pay off these women? Now where is Russia involved? No doubt whatever he is trying to manipulate he will serve about half his term and his tax evasion and his taxi mess were not a crime ? Do we not hire and pay attorneys to take care of things for us so we do not have to be involved. If there was anything with these women not sure why he needed this and what has happened now to women who did this type of involvement and why do they have to get paid is this not a type of blackmail . Most know who Trump is and make these choices and then later want more money to keep quiet. Yes, many men are stupid but also why are these women able to get this money just to shut up. Amazing. Guess men have to make choices from now on per no hiding today. Most did not vote for Pres Trump as any angel but to take care of us the working people who have been forgotten and the Democrats are phony and lying all the way. Let in more Illegals I heard Sen today say to do her field work and mfg jobs now. Yes for low wages too ? So Middle Class and those who lost jobs making a decent living for years no one cared and still do not until Pres Trump. Now Gov AFFORDABLE health care . Has to be done for all now .

  • Ethel L. Cenkner

    12/16/2018 07:22 PM

    You are so right on Shep Smith. Never trusted him--he never misses a chance to put down Trump.
    I agree with everything you write--the newly elected "hate Trump Democrats" especially in New York,
    Don't care a whit about what's best for this country--just get rid of Trump. Never mind if Trump gets
    good agreements with Mexico, Canada and China, don't ever give him credit---Hillary would have
    done better---ha ha. --I pray for Trump and this country every day!

  • Shirley Hawtree

    12/16/2018 03:23 PM

    I too have been wondering about Napolitano lately. I don’t watch his segments now?
    His demeanor has changed radically as far as I’m concerned. He sure has a bug up his butt.
    Shepherd is just beyond words!
    And to you Mike HUCKABEE I say thank you. I look forward to your writings daily . Your articles are
    The best & easy to understand. Appreciate your outlook & positivity. GOD BLESS YOU & your family.
    Sincerely ,
    Shirley

  • mike eberhart

    12/16/2018 01:24 AM

    well said mike.

  • Carl Smith

    12/15/2018 10:27 PM

    Readers Digest version! Back a few generations ago I had an Texas Aggie Engineer working with me and he was brilliant; but for one major drawback. If I asked him what time it was he would explain to me how to build a watch or how the Nuclear time was calculated. I am in Thomas Jefferson's corner on this one-- Why use two words when one will suffice?
    Judge Nappy & Shep Smith! Two peas in a pod?
    The Newest Anti Trumper, the AG of NY Letitia James is just playing to her handlers in the construction business that Trump Thumped for years getting his projects in NY completed On Time and UNDER Budget IN SPITE or the mafia Unions. FOLLOW THE MONEY PEOPLE...

  • Firewagon

    12/15/2018 04:36 PM

    "....everything Democrats said to get Americans to vote for them was a lie...." Too many cliche's to mention here, but a favorite on this subject is, "When Will They Ever Learn?" Think there is a song with that line in it. Another proven fallacy: "Americans are not stupid!" That actually may be 'partially true;' however, they do exemplify the new definition of insanity: "Doing the same thing over and over....!" Perhaps the best being that, "America 'needs' our "two party" system of government." How has that worked out, over the past fifty-odd years? There are two parties alright, the DemocRAT party and the 'DemocRAT Lite' party. They all feed from the same taxpayer trough, enriching themselves and their 'true' benefactors, all at the expense of "We The Serfs!" That vaunted, esteemed, educated, evolved, 'electorate' is NONE of those.....

  • KAREN RUSSELL

    12/15/2018 02:47 PM

    I just don't know what we (conservatives) can do about the awful political injustices going on in our country. We are voting conservative but democrats are making a mockery of our laws and not being held accountable for it. Soros money seems to be everywhere. Many voters are delusional and arrogant, others too apathetic to care about the truth. I feel terrible for the people who have been the victims of persecution for the sole "crime" of being a conservative. I feel like we should rise up and say enough like the yellow vests. Seems like that's what it would take to make our government stop their antics, but would it help? I guess we'll see how the people of France make out. God help us and our grandchildren if the lawlessness is not stopped.

  • Anne Turner

    12/15/2018 01:59 PM

    Nightmare scenario: Trump is impeached and convicted. Something terrible happens to Pence before a new VP is appointed. Pelosi becomes President, appoints Hilary as VP and the resigns due to age. Sleep well.

  • Nelda White

    12/15/2018 01:07 PM

    It has always puzzled me why witches would want to go on a witch hunt. They already have more than enough. Keep up the good work President Trump and don't be discouraged Mrs. Trump, you are a fantastic First Lady.

  • Jim Sherwood

    12/15/2018 12:59 PM

    Regarding Judge Napolitano's views expressed on FOX...I suspect he is applying some audience ratings spin to his opinions lately.

  • Carol Mulshine

    12/15/2018 12:01 PM

    Dear Gov. Huckabee,

    Need to know if you can get me a direct line to President Trump re: in regards to China.
    *( VERY IMPORTANT FOR OUR COUNTRY. ) ** High Tech info.
    He needs to hear it this. Have him contact me: 908-433-5077

    Sincerely,

    Carol J. Mulshine, RN.

  • Joseph Trokey

    12/15/2018 11:59 AM

    Good thing Cohen isn't the Clinton's lawyer. He would have committed suicide way before now. Just another sleazy lawyer in a town full of them.

  • Greg Brown

    12/15/2018 11:26 AM

    Thoroughly enjoy your analysis of Cohen. It is a shame that all the facts don't come out. I met you once when you were helping David Perdue campaign in Perry, GA. The highlight was the program stopped when the national anthem was played by a church in the far distance. We immediately joined in singing. Perhaps, Someone else as at the campaign stop?

  • Patricia Varhol

    12/15/2018 11:09 AM

    I’ve felt, for a long time, that Judge Napolitano is a Trump “hater”, as well as Shepherd Smith and Chris Wallace. It’s okay that they are on Fox, but why don’t they be honest? They let most of us believe they support Trump, which they do not.

  • Richard Jenkins

    12/15/2018 10:51 AM

    Thank you as always for your inciteful comments. You mention Shepard Smith, after watching him recently, there is no doubt in my mind that he should be on CNN not Fox News. He is out to get President Trump and somehow has pulled Judge Napolitano along with him. I guess it's "cool" to be a Trump basher these days.
    There is only one hope for this great Nation of ours, a return to the Christian foundation we were built on and blessed because of.

  • Nancy Pedro

    12/15/2018 10:44 AM

    I remember reading during the campaign that Trump used millions of his own money to fund his campaign. So -- if people were paid off using his own money, how does that become illegal. I'd like you to address the difference between all of this and the "slush fund" of taxpayer money that has been used to pay off people who accused sitting legislators of sexual harassment/abuse. And then of course -- there is the issue that all of these accusations against Trump were from before he was President -- as far as anyone knows he hasn't been doing it in the oval office with the interns! Seems like the pot is trying to call the kettle black!

  • Jerry & Donna Hale

    12/15/2018 08:58 AM

    Excellent commentary today! Spot on. Just wish we could put this on the front page of a national newspaper. Keep up the good work! You are my choice for President.
    Jerry

  • Bill Taylor

    12/15/2018 08:49 AM

    Hey Mike, maybe Judge Napolitano is right??

  • Albert Blank

    12/15/2018 08:38 AM

    Re 'Judge' Napolitano, it has been patently obvious to me that he is part of the deep-state never-Trump-ers - for about the past 2 years! He is consistently spinning to provide his 'judicial' (but personal) biased opinion, disregarding obvious facts, to spear Trump, all the while being paid by FOX to be a neutral analyst? Perhaps he was expecting Trump to appoint him as head of the DoJ and was disappointed that he was left out in the cold! Shepard Smith, and his cadre of anti-Trump 'spinners like Busby of the WSJ, 'Judge Napolitano, the ubiquitous Congressman Eric Swalwell are all on the team to go 100% against Trump in what they report, and how they report it, on FOX no less, a uniquely (SUPPOSEDLY) Trump-friendly media! We Conservative voters are smarter than that!

  • Jim Hunt

    12/15/2018 08:31 AM

    The left has conveniently induced a loss of memory when it comes to justice: why are they not calling for an investigation into Hillary's unlawful acts as Secretary of State, especially when she has blood on her hands? Why aren't they calling on her to come clean on the email fiasco? Why are they giving her, Obama, Lynch and Holder a pass when they clearly violated the law?
    I believe that they're doing it because Trump is anti-globalist. He sees the real danger in the globalist movement which will take down the U.S. Trump also knows that multiculturalism does not work (as in the case of the recent terrorist acts in France, Germany and Britain) and he has witnessed their fall. Trump values life, whereas the Dems support abortion: the so-called 'right' to murder the unborn. He feels that economic freedom is far better than excessive taxation and control of your money and your rights. This is a stark contrast to the Democrat socialist agenda that they're trying to impose on us.
    The Dems are controlled by the George Soros types who (hypocritically) gained their fortunes under the Capitalist system, and then want to control people with their own socialist/communist agenda. People like Soros have control over the media and therefore control public opinion, all the while (the public) are not doing their due diligence in looking for the truth and justice. Another fact is that the Illuminati are hard at work here in our country. They're not giving up and are working hard to advance their agenda. They have the money to forward their causes and will not stop until they have acquired their goals to control everything. Follow the money!
    Trump may not be the perfect president (I wish he would make his tweets 'more presidential') but he's a welcome change to what the Dems have in their radar screen. He simply tells the truth as he knows it and has the country's well being at heart.
    The Dems will do ANYTHING to bring Trump down including an attempt to impeach him for using the wrong color toilet paper. It's so sad to see the hatred for a man who stands up for our freedoms, all the while giving a pass to their own who have committed crimes, even to those who have the blood of brave Americans on their hands.

  • Stephen Russell

    12/15/2018 08:26 AM

    Wall sections etc: I feel key Wall sections should be named for: Pelosi, Schumer, & other allies Pro IllegalImmigration on walls facing US side.
    Agent X would call on issue on the Grassley section for help etc.
    & USBP/ICE Stations would be named for agents Killed on duty by Illegal aliens.
    & add to same in US ICE BP stations North of Wall area, ALL States: TX NM AZ CA.

  • Patricia Cunningham

    12/15/2018 08:01 AM

    I absolutely love your Commentaries! You and your Beautiful daughter are so amazing! I sense your frustration in this one, and so many others. Don’t ever give up or give in! You are a Blessing for us and for our wonderful POTUS AND FLOTUS!

  • Miriam Spears

    12/15/2018 12:19 AM

    The daily news is so frustrating to watch because every day the Democrats find new ways to attack our President and anyone connected to him. The Witch Hunt is now turning into a Torture Chamber. Do you think they will ever get over losing election in 2016? Better yet, will the American People Ever Witness OBAMA, The Clintons, and all their cohorts , being arrested and held accountable for their many crimes committed against our country and the American people?

  • Ruth Forester

    12/15/2018 12:08 AM

    I always enjoy reading your take on things! Must say, I've been noticing that Judge Napolitano is increasingly left leaning and anti-Trump. Regarding the new proposal passed today in Congress! I've never been so disgusted and astounded by the Republicans! Seeing Senator Mike Lee standing with Bernie, with their panties all in a bunch, and against the President and his stance with the Saudi's in the Middle East! NONE of them are able to make the hard decisions for the benefit of America! They are like herding cats, to try to get them to pass something effective to protect this nation with effective immigration reform and building the wall! But they can join the demorats against our President to give the Middle East to Iran! It is just sickening to see! Until now, I have respected Sen. Lee, but now more! From the analysis I've been hearing, Pres. Trump is doing the best thing for the majority of people involved! Considering the types of cultures we deal with, there are many who have terrible attitudes about "human rights." I'm becoming more and more disappointed in the people who are elected to represent us. Congress does not seem to want to save America as we have known it, but are complicit in selling us out to the globalist/socialist policies.

  • ed Jones

    12/14/2018 10:52 PM

    I read them.