President Donald Trump has had a Richard Nixon-like week. To some, that’s putting it mildly.
The president’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort was found guilty on eight separate counts — five charges for tax fraud, two for bank fraud, and one count of failing to disclose a foreign bank account.
The jury could not reach a consensus on the 10 other counts against him and one juror who spoke publicly and acknowledged being a Trump supporter said Manafort would have been found guilty on those 10 counts had it not been for one holdout.
Separately, within minutes of the Manafort verdict, Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen entered a guilty plea to eight counts, including two campaign finance violations relating to payments made in exchange for silence from porn star Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal about their affairs with Mr. Trump.
Trump then commenced a tweetstorm in which he implored his Attorney General Jeff Sessions to “do something.”
Sessions fired back that he wouldn’t obstruct justice for anyone.
It appears that those long opposed to Trump and his policies smell blood in the water.
“Manafort and Cohen both lied about their finances and cheated the IRS,” said Rep. Maxine Waters, a staunch critic of Trump who has led the call for his impeachment. “Can you imagine what Don the Con must be hiding in his tax returns when it is well-known that the only bank that would lend him money, Deutsche, is notorious for money laundering?
“Cohen admitted Trump instructed him to break the law,” the California Democrat said. “If it’s a crime for Cohen, it’s a crime for Trump. Debates about whether you can indict a president do not excuse Congress from its responsibility to impeach Trump for treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”
Much of what happens next may depend on what special counsel Robert Mueller recommends in his report at the conclusion of his investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
When asked if he thinks Trump could face impeachment in the next Congress, Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) said it depends on what Mueller finds.
“If he comes up with something where the American people see that this has been an incredible breach of trust, then people, both Republicans and Democrats, have a duty to do that,” Van Hollen told CBS’ “The Takeout” host Major Garrett. “I think it depends on the outcome of the Mueller investigation, and no one can predict exactly what he will come up with,”
Trump told “Fox and Friends” host Ainsley Earhardt that he’s been doing his job too well to be tossed out of office.
“I don’t know how you can impeach somebody who’s done a great job,” Trump said. “If I ever got impeached, I think the market would crash, I think everybody would be very poor.”
But the White House maintains that Trump is in the clear legally, despite Manafort and Cohen’s admissions, CBS reported.
“What I can tell you is what the president has stated a number of times: he did nothing wrong, there are no charges against him,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said during a press briefing last week.