CNN's Jeffrey Toobin explains why Manafort appears to have flipped and told prosecutors what he knows
CNN's Jeffrey Toobin (Screengrab)

What would a Paul Manafort guilty plea mean? After news broke that the prosecution was close to reaching a deal with Donald Trump's former campaign manager, CNN's chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin appeared with host Wolf Blitzer to discuss the development.

Manafort is looking at "a disaster scenario," Toobin said, and that likely means he'd need to flip on Trump.

"Cooperation is usually the case," said Toobin. "And, frankly, given Manafort's lack of leverage, prosecutors would insist on it."

Today's meeting between Manafort and prosecutors, where a near-deal was apparently struck, may have been a "proffer session" where Manafort told the prosecution "what he would say" if he cooperated.

Toobin said Manafort's first trial was a "slam dunk"and he was "puzzled" by why Manafort did not plea out sooner.

"It may be that he was hoping for a pardon, it may be that he's afraid of what his Russian friends would think of him if he pleads guilty," Toobin said.

Watch below.