NBC News national security analyst Frank Figliuzzi and CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin on Thursday reached the same conclusion about the “significance” of new charges filed against former Donald Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy Rick Gates.
Special counsel Robert Mueller unveiled “superseding indictments” against Manafort and Gates, which totaled 32 counts against the former Trump campaign aides—including charges of tax and bank fraud.
“The continued charges on Gates tell us that he’s not yet committed to cooperating and many of us thought he was on the cusp of cooperating,” Figliuzzi told MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace. “That clearly is not happening. His defense is in chaos right now. His attorneys, as you know, have pulled away from him, asked to be taken off the case. He hasn’t signed up a new attorney yet.”
“With regard to Manafort, look, this is all about having Manafort flip on Trump,” Figliuzzi continued. “It’s all about showing the Russia connection. Manafort has that kind of information available. He’s not flipped yet. He’s not cooperating. And I’ll tell you what, if he doesn’t do it with these new tax charges, you’re looking at Manafort literally dying in federal prison based on the tax charges are horrific in terms of the gravity of it, the time you’ll spend in prison.”
And this takes awhile—to get the IRS to sign off on federal tax charges, you’ve got to really make your case and mueller has clearly made it here,” he added.
Figliuzzi went on to describe Mueller’s team as a “dream team,” repeating “Manafort is about getting to the Russian collusion with Trump.”
“And until Manafort gives it up, this case is not going to be over yet, and it’s a domino effect, right?” Figliuzzi said. “You get Gates, Gates flips on Manafort, you get Manafort, Manafort flips on Trump. And you’ll understand the inner workings of how the Russians were working the campaign. That’s what this is about. You’ll continue to see charges until there aren’t any left to charge on Manafort and Gates, and eventually one of them or both of them is going to break and cooperate or, as I’ve said, die in federal prison.”
Over on CNN, Toobin echoed a similar statement.
“If he’s convicted after trial … he is going to die in prison,” Toobin said later adding “the stakes couldn’t be any higher.”
MSNBC’s Frank Figliuzzi:
CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin:
GOP lawmaker mocked after whining Adam Schiff wouldn’t let her break impeachment hearing rules
During the public hearings in the House impeachment inquiry into President Trump this Friday, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY) attempted to direct a line of questions to former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, but was interrupted by Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, who informed Devin Nunes (R-CA) that "under the house resolute 660, you are not allowed to yield time except to minority counsel."
As Stefanik continued to try to speak, Schiff repeatedly cut her off. "The gentlewoman will suspend," Schiff said as he swung the gavel. "You're not recognized."
"This is the fifth time you've interrupted members of Congress -- duly elected members of Congress," Stefanik protested.
France to host Putin, Zelensky in bid to end Ukraine conflict
Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet his Ukranian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky in Paris on December 9 for their first face-to-face encounter, seeking to end the half-decade conflict in Ukraine, the French presidency said Friday.
The leaders will join French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel for the four-way summit aimed at resolving the conflict in the east of Ukraine, where pro-Moscow separatists have declared breakaway regions, the Elysee Palace said.
Macron, who has been spearheading a drive for peace in Ukraine, had hoped to host the summit in September but it was held up by numerous obstacles that highlighted the difficulty of resolving the conflict.
Feds now probing Giuliani’s links to Ukrainian natural gas projects – and if he profited from them
Federal investigators are now probing the ties of the President's personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, into Ukrainian energy projects, and if he stood to gain financially in a business venture headed by his two "henchmen" who are now in jail.
The two associates infamously aided Giuliani's efforts in Ukraine to launch investigations into Joe Biden and Hunter Biden in an attempt to assist President Donald Trump's re-election efforts, The Wall Street Journal reports.