According to a letter to the FEC from Michael Cohen’s then-attorney in February 2018, Cohen “used his own personal money to make a payment to Ms. Stephanie Clifford,” also called Stormy Daniels of $130,000, in 2016. Which also supports what Cohen told Costello.
According to Cohen’s attorney Stephen Ryan, “the Trump Organization and the Trump team was not involved in the transaction made with Ms. Clifford, and also neither compensated Mr. Cohen for such payment directly or indirectly.”
“Mr. Cohen has not been a federal employee for any of the time frames in question. The FEC does not have jurisdiction over this matter since the payment in question does not qualify as a contribution or expenditure for political campaigns. The complainants have not provided any proof to the contrary and are unable to do so. Therefore, the complaint ought to be dismissed.”
The letter disputes what Cohen later claimed to have said in an effort to avoid going to jail, and it probably disputes what he told the grand jury.
We should note that Cohen changed his tune and entered a plea to a long list of federal crimes a little more than six months after that letter was written, including making an excessive donation to Trump’s campaign by paying Daniels to stay silent about her claimed 2006 affair with him. Cohen acknowledged as a part of his guilty plea that he had paid Daniels by using a newly formed shell company and then requested reimbursement from Trump’s company for the entire sum, plus a $35 wire charge and an additional $50,000 for tech work for Trump’s campaign.
Additionally, in a tweet from May 2018, Trump acknowledged that Cohen had paid Clifford/Daniels. The money came from “a private legal contract between two people,” according to Trump, who claimed that Cohen was on retainer for him personally and not the campaign.
This letter lends more credence to the problems that led the Manhattan District Attorney to postpone the grand jury sessions on Wednesday. According to insiders, the grand jury may be challenging the case against Trump, and there was division within Bragg’s office about the matter.
Trump replied to the letter, calling it “exculpatory.” It seems that Trump has a greater understanding of what could be exculpatory compared to a Biden nominee for the judiciary who does not even appear to comprehend what the Brady case refers to, which calls for the prosecution to provide any exculpatory material that they may have to the defense.
“Whoa, check out the letter Cohen’s attorney sent to the FEC that was just discovered. The Manhattan District Attorney’s witch hunt must halt immediately because this completely clears everyone involved. Cohen acknowledges that he did it himself. So that no one in New York is murdered while walking down the sidewalks, the D.A. should begin prosecuting violent offenders.”
Some legal experts concurred that this would probably support Trump’s position.
Exactly. It demonstrates yet another instance of Cohen not stating the truth, further undermining the case. It makes sense why Bragg is having difficulties with the case. One is left to question if this letter has been seen by the grand jury.