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Michael Cohen gets 36 months in prison for Trump hush-money scheme

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old and tired Michael Cohen

President Donald Trump’s former longtime personal attorney was sentenced to 36 months in federal prison over his involvement in the hush-money scheme that Cohen alleges was directed by the president.

Cohen made payouts to at least two women who said they had affairs with Trump during the early years of his marriage to First Lady Melania Trump.

In August, Cohen, 52, pleaded guilty to charges brought by Trump-appointed federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York. He has admitted that on the eve of the election he paid adult film actress Stormy Daniels $130,000 and helped arrange a $150,000 payment to former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

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As part of his plea, Cohen also admitted to tax fraud and other illegal business schemes.

He faces another sentencing in a case brought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who said Cohen cooperated with his investigation into Russian meddling and is not asking for additional prison time.


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Sondland is in ‘tremendous trouble’ no matter how he tries to change his testimony tomorrow: NYT columnist

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On Tuesday, in the wake of testimony from several witnesses in the impeachment hearing that broadly implicated EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland in improper backchannel foreign policy, New York Times columnist Wajahat Ali suggested that Sondland is in "tremendous trouble" — and that no testimony he could give tomorrow will get him out of this mess:

No. He will be trying to save himself. The perjury plus multiple stellar witnesses paint a damning portrait. He's in tremendous trouble. https://t.co/CxN5w0EErb

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Even the Republican witnesses make Donald Trump look like a depraved criminal

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The second half of Tuesday's hearing offered something new in the Donald Trump impeachment inquiry: Witnesses called by the Republican minority on the House Intelligence Committee. It's understandable why Republicans would want these two men.

One of them was Tim Morrison, a former National Security Council aide who is among the few people directly exposed to Trump's famous phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky who claims to believe there was nothing wrong with it. The other was Kurt Volker, a former special envoy to Ukraine, who appears to have been a major actor in Trump's extortion scheme in that country. Indeed, Volker was deemed one of the "three amigos" — along with Energy Secretary Rick Perry and Trump donor/EU ambassador Gordon Sondland — who Trump entrusted with Ukrainian relations as he exerted increasing pressure on the country's leaders to give into his extortion scheme.

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Impeachment: Trump’s ‘hearsay’ defense just crashed and burned

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In the panoply of contradictory and incoherent defenses of Donald Trump, a favorite of Republicans has been to harp on the claim that witnesses to Trump's extortion scheme against Ukraine were all "second-hand" or "third-hand." This has always been confounding, as the official summary readout of the famous phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky shows Trump clearly conditioning military aid and U.S. support on Zelensky giving a public boost to Trump's conspiracy theories about former Vice President Joe Biden and other Democratic leaders. The witnesses so far have simply affirmed what the written record demonstrates amply.

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