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‘Criminal conspiracy’: Dem lawmaker says Cohen’s testimony shows Trump’s misdeeds are ‘probably impeachable’

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Michael Cohen’s public testimony hasn’t yet occurred, but Democratic lawmakers are already making strong conclusions based just on his leaked opening statement.

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) went on CNN Wednesday morning and didn’t mince any words about what she thought about some of the explosive allegations made by Cohen in his opening statement, including witnessing Trump and Roger Stone talking about future WikiLeaks email dumps in the summer of 2016.

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“Donald Trump was aware, was informed, was engaged in this criminal conspiracy to rig the election on his behalf,” she said. “And he did so in conjunction with the Russians.”

CNN’s John Berman then pressed Speier about whether she could really say that Trump had conspired with Russia, and she didn’t back down.

“I think that what we will see is that the rigging took took place as a dance that went on between Russia, Donald Trump, his campaign, in terms of the use of the social media,” she said. “All of these pieces are now coming together that have heretofore not been to us.”

Speier went on to say that Cohen’s testimony offers new avenues for congressional investigators to discover just what Trump and his campaign officials have lied about in terms of their dealings with Russian operatives.

“I think what we will find out there was a conspiracy to lie by a number of people associated with Donald Trump and his campaign,” she said. “This is just the beginning of what I think is a very serious and probably impeachable offense.”

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Trump’s Senate trial will be ‘riddled by hypocrisy’ with Ken Starr defending him: CNN legal analyst

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President Donald Trump's decision to tap former Whitewater special prosecutor Ken Starr for his impeachment defense team drew a sharp rebuke from former federal prosecutor Elie Honig on Friday.

"Whatever they do will be riddled by hypocrisy," Honig said of Trump's impeachment defense team during an appearance on CNN. "Ken Starr, the guy who spent years trying to throw a president out of office for lying about sex in a civil deposition, is now defending a president who has been impeached for trying to shake down a foreign country to interfere with an election. I don't know how you square that."

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Rick Santorum flattened by CNN’s Berman after calling Parnas bombshell revelations ‘extraneous’ to impeachment

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Rick Santorum and CNN's John Berman got into a frantic back-and-forth on Friday morning after the former Republican senator attempted to dismiss the revelations by former Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas as something that should not be submitted as evidence in the impeachment trial of Donald Trump.

Discussing the Senate trial expected to start next week, Santorum said the only testimony and witnesses that should be allowed are ones that came up in the earlier House hearings.

"The House's responsibility to bring to us a case," Santorum stated. "They're the one who is said these are offenses that are worthy of the president being removed from office; here is the record, here are the charges. The Senate didn't impeach, the House did, so we are going to look at the record the House presented us. We're going to look at the witnesses and say are there are questions that we have for the people that brought this case forward and relied on these witnesses and look at their testimony."

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Here’s why some Americans don’t appreciate ‘extraordinary’ accusations from Lev Parnas

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On Thursday's edition of CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin broke down a key reason why indicted Giuliani associate Lev Parnas hasn't quite gotten across the severity of his accusations against President Donald Trump to the American people.

"Jeff, what do you think of Parnas as a witness?" asked Cooper.

"He has a distinctive style. He's very deadpan, very low-key," said Toobin. "You somehow don't realize how extraordinary story he is telling. The proprietor of a company called Fraud Guarantee, and he is going to the leadership of the government of Ukraine and saying, unless you announce an investigation of the Biden family,  you are not getting the money that Congress has authorized. you are not getting the visit from the president and you are not getting an Oval Office visit. And it's true. None of it happened."

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