Paul Manafort finds himself in a bad position after special counsel Robert Mueller revealed his attempts to contact witnesses in the Russia probe to influence their testimony.
Mueller has asked a federal judge to jail Manafort or alter the terms of his pretrial release after accusing him of witness tampering — and a former federal prosecutor told MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle just how bad things have gotten for the former Trump campaign chairman.
“Things went from bad to much worse for Paul Manafort — here’s why,” said Glenn Kirschner, a homicide prosecutor until last month for the District of Columbia U.S. Attorney’s office.
Manafort has been indicted by grand juries in the Eastern District of Virginia and in Washington, D.C., and Kirschner said the new allegations against him appear to be clear examples of new crimes.
“I’ve seen this kind of witness tampering hundreds of times,” the veteran former prosecutor said. “What we have here is Mr. Manafort reaching out to witnesses and saying, ‘Remember, we didn’t do any lobbying in the United States,’ when there is ample evidence that that’s untrue. Then what I found almost amusing — sad, but amusing — was one of the witnesses who’s an associate of Mr. Manafort’s is reinforcing this message by saying P., an obvious reference to Mr. Manafort, wants you to say, you know, we never lobbied in the United States. Then they put in parens, ‘which is true.'”
He used a legalistic example to explain the farcical attempts.
“Let me use an everyday hypothetical to demonstrate why this is laughable,” Kirschner told Ruhle. “Let’s assume when the show wraps today you and I go out and rob a 7-Eleven. We do it without guns because we don’t want anybody to get hurt. I immediately get arrested, detained, and I place a phone call to you, and I say, ‘Stephanie, remember yesterday when we didn’t rob a 7-Eleven, which is true.”
“This is, frankly, a chapter out of ‘Witness Tampering for Dummies,’ and things have gotten extraordinarily bad for Paul Manafort,” Kirschner added.
Chad Wolf’s authority is ‘illegitimate’: Hispanic Caucus chairman demands DHS chief ‘resign in disgrace’
Immigrant rights groups and Texas Democrats are urging a review on the legality of Trump administration immigration policies after a government watchdog found two of the White House’s top immigration officials are not legally eligible to serve in their respective positions.
The Government Accountability Office on Friday determined that Chad Wolf, acting Department of Homeland Security secretary, and Ken Cuccinelli, a senior official performing deputy secretary duties, aren’t legally qualified to hold those posts.
United We Dream, an advocacy group pushing for immigration reform, said the GAO’s conclusion calls into question the latest guidance from the DHS on the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program that was initiated in 2012.
Lots of red hats — but not many COVID masks — at Bedminster ‘Cops for Trump’ event with the president
Enhanced unemployment benefits have expired and there is still no deal on the next COVID-19 stimulus package, but the president of the United States left Washington, DC on Friday for yet another weekend at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster.
"This weekend’s trip to Trump National Bedminster is the president’s 23rd since taking office, and will increase his golf-related taxpayer tab to $142 million in travel and security expenses," HuffPost White House corresponded S.V. Dáte reported Friday. "Trump has already spent 268 days on golf courses that he owns in his 1,303 days in office, of which 85 have been at Bedminster."
Trump declares that Fox News is ‘no longer the big deal’ in the 2020 presidential campaign
Donald Trump on Friday reflected on what he sees as the key differences between his 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns.
"The biggest difference between the Presidential Race in 2020 and that of 2016 is the 2016 candidate, Crooked Hillary Clinton, was much smarter and sharper than Slow Joe, we have even more ENTHUSIASM now, and [Fox News] has become politically correct and no longer the big deal!" Trump tweeted after arriving at his Bedminster Golf Club for the weekend.
Trump has grown increasingly frustrated by the network and its polls, which gave him more bad news on Thursday.