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Watergate prosecutor explains why Cohen is more damaging to Trump than John Dean was to Nixon

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Former Trump attorney Michael Cohen (left, via Shutterstock) and former Watergate lawyer John Dean (right, via screengrab).

A former Watergate special prosecutor responded to news that Donald Trump’s former “fixer” Michael Cohen had been sentenced to three years in prison by discussing his similarities to (and differences from) John Dean.

Dean, ex-Watergate prosecutor Richard Ben-Viniste noted, pleaded guilty and went to jail after agreeing to cooperate and offer information. Cohen, however, has not cooperated to that level — and also was sentenced for his own crimes that are separate from Trump.

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“In the Southern District [of New York, where Cohen was sentenced], you can’t go halfway,” Ben-Viniste told CNN host Brooke Baldwin. “You can say you’re going to cooperate fully and not do it, and he did not.”

The prosecutor outlined further differences as well, including that Trump’s former attorney has a “lifetime” of evidence against the president and “a variety of different scams unfortunately that have come home to roost.”

Cohen’s “very significant cooperation” with special counsel Robert Mueller will likely allow him to “get another bite at the apple” of his sentencing down the road.

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2020 Election

White House official nailed by CNN’s Tapper about Trump’s taxes after he whines Biden won’t release his court picks

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Attempting to defuse accusations of hypocrisy over the rush to replace Supreme Court Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Vice President Mike Pence's chief of staff complained that former Vice President Joe Biden has yet to release nominees he would consider for the high court, only to have CNN's Jake Tapper confront him about Donald Trump's taxes.

Appearing on CNN's "State of the Union," Marc Short tried to brush aside accusations that Republicans are hypocrites when it comes to voting on Supreme Court nominees in an election year when he stepped in it by attacking Biden.

"We still haven't seen a list from Joe Biden," Short told the CNN host. "We welcome a list from Joe Biden who would show the American people here's who I would appoint to the Supreme Court. But as far as the politics of it, I think the American people wanted Donald Trump to be in a position to make these nominations, and it's his obligation to do so."

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2020 Election

‘You don’t see any hypocrisy?’ Chris Wallace filets Tom Cotton by replaying his Merrick Garland speech

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Fox News host Chris Wallace accused Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) of hypocrisy on Sunday after he vowed to push forward with a vote to replace Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in an election year.

"Why the rush to judgement?" Wallace asked Cotton after the senator promised a swift vote on President Donald Trump's eventual nominee.

"We're not going to rush," Cotton insisted. "We not going to skip steps. We're going to move forward without delay."

Wallace reminded Cotton that President Barack Obama named Judge Merrick Garland as his nominee after Justice Antonin Scalia died in 2016.

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Trump’s ‘The Apprentice: Covid Edition’ is a massive flop — and blowing up in his face

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It's hardly new or revelatory to say this, but it's critical to remember the role that "The Apprentice" played in turning Donald Trump, a notoriously bad businessman with a string of bankruptcies, into an American icon of capitalist success. Everything from careful editing to set designers giving the dreary Trump Organization offices a glow-up came together to create the illusion of success where only failure and mediocrity had been before.

It was an experience so profound for Trump that he did something highly unusual: He learned something. He absorbed the idea that a well-constructed illusion of competence gets you all the benefits of being accomplished, without having to do the hard work of actually achieving anything.

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