Last night’s interview of Stormy Daniels with Anderson Cooper, on 60 Minutes, was a much anticipated and watched event. Apparently 20 Million viewers tuned in and made this episode of the 60 Minutes the most watched in a decade (the fact that it wasn’t the most watched in history is also telling). The Interview itself was mildly interesting, in places somewhat disappointing, rather dull in the age of common-place extreme titillation, in retrospect kind-of predictable but definitely troublesome for ‘pinball’ President Donald Trump, ricocheting from scandal to scandal, and his out-of-pocket $130,000 attorney, Michael Cohen.
The Trump side, including the President, has been consistently denying the allegation that he and Stormy Daniels had a sexual encounter about a decade ago. They have been consistently denying it, yet, they have a deluge of legal paper crafted with the express purpose of muzzling Ms. Daniels, and more recent dictums for her to cease and desist in talking about the affair, and about them. It would seem that Trump and his legal help is going to a lot of trouble to make Stormy stop speaking about something which according to them didn’t happen at all. That much legal effort in muzzling someone speaks to the possibility of information existing that needs to be suppressed, according to their own judgment and efforts, and therefore lends greater credence to Stormy’s version of events, and not theirs.
And then there is the, in-your-face matter of the payment of $130,000 of ‘Hush Money’ by Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, to Stormy Daniels, paid days before the elections in 2016, documented and backed up by a rather onerous over-the-top ‘Non-Disclosure Agreement’ (NDA) that spells out in extensive details all the matters that Stormy cannot talk about regarding the supposed non-existent relationship with his Client, Donald Trump, a.k.a David Dennison, in the NDA.
The money was paid to Stormy, she acknowledges receiving it, Cohen confirms giving it, and yet he and his client maintain that it (the sexual affair) never happened, making the whole elaborate financial and legal transaction seem rather ridiculous without the presence of any motive.
And therein lies the greatest area of potential problems for Donald Trump, the President.
His lawyer Cohen paid a large sum of money on his behalf, with a convoluted scheme of using his own money and not the client’s, days before the election, to keep Stormy from talking about his client’s affair with her, presumably to protect the client’s election chances, which would make it an illegal ‘election contribution’, contravening the Federal Election Contribution Laws, which is a Federal offense.
All of Michael Cohen’s protestations, that the money given to Stormy Daniels was in no way linked to Donald Trump, the Presidential Candidate, become unglued as most of his correspondence regarding the transactions, links directly to the Trump Organization via the stationary he used, the email he used, and the Title he used, as ‘Vice President of the Trump Organization’.
The written evidence, in ample quantity, points to the affair having taken place between Donald Trump and Stormy Daniels, in spite of the consistent denials of Trump and Cohen.
The 60 Minutes interview with Anderson Cooper showed Stormy Daniels as a straight shooting credible person, whose details of her encounter with Trump had close similarities to Playboy Playmate Karen McDougal’s statements about her 10 month long affair with Trump.
If the interview didn’t offer any new startling revelations, it certainly seemed to give Stormy enough credibility that she was being truthful. Conversely, Trump and his lawyer’s subsequent actions after the affair, and their consistent denials, also fit the pattern of the other Trump sagas, which usually go from ‘fake news folks’ to being confirmed facts, sometimes days later (McMaster’s recent firing is a classic case in point).
This percolating legal battle between the President of the United States, the most powerful man in the World, and the supposed leader of the ‘Free World’, who had a one night stand with a candid, straight shooting ‘Porn Star’, complicated by a $130,000 payment of ‘hush money’ by Michael Cohen on behalf of his client, promises to follow that tried and tested pattern, of Trump straight faced denying that which ultimately turns out to be the extreme opposite of fake news.