Draft indictment detailed Trump's role in hush money scheme

Leroy Wright
November 12, 2018

And now, the Wall Street Journal reports he played a key role in the hush payments involving Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal.

Trump was "involved in or briefed on almost every step of the agreements", the Journal reported, up to "directing deals in phone calls and meetings".

In August, Michael Cohen, Trump's former lawyer, said he made the payments at the direction of Trump and pleaded guilty to campaign-finance violations. Cohen told prosecutors that as Trump discussed the payment to Daniels, he told him, "Get it done", the newspaper reported.

Weeks before the 2016 election, Donald Trump was personally involved in making hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels and Karen Macdougal, a new report says, refuting Trump's repeated insistence that he was unaware of the deals.

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Cohen has also described to prosecutors his discussions with Trump and a Trump Organization executive about how to pay Clifford without leaving the candidate's fingerprints on the deal.

Cohen told a federal judge in August that he had paid sums of $130,000 and $150,000 each to two women who claimed they had affairs with Trump, adult film star Stormy Daniels (real name Stephanie Clifford) and Playboy model Karen McDougal, acting at his boss's request in a bid to buy their silence "with the goal of influencing the election". According to the accounts, Trump asked Pecker what he could do to help his campaign, and the latter responded by offering to "use his National Enquirer tabloid to buy the silence of women if they tried to publicize alleged sexual encounters with Mr. Trump".

After Trump's 2016 request, Pecker's company, American Media Inc., paid $150,000 to McDougal to keep her from going public with her story. In April, when asked by a reporter on Air Force One if he had directed the payment to Daniels, Trump said he knew nothing about it: "You'll have to ask Michael Cohen", he said. And according to the Wall Street Journal, federal prosecutors have extensive evidence that Trump was indeed a central figure in coordinating the hush money schemes, despite his previous denials. Cohen's lawyer said on MSNBC that his client is willing to share information about Trump with special counsel Robert Mueller.

"I think the President should be indicted".

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