Tapes of the President? We’ve Been Here Before

Yesterday, a journalist said President Donald Trump’s “personal lawyer” Michael Cohen taped Trump shortly before the presidential election about buying a “catch and kill” NDA that AMI–the parent company of the National Enquirer magazine–had with Karen McDougal that silenced her about her alleged nine-month sexual affair with Trump starting in 2006. This NDA had been signed several months before the election.CEO of the National Enquirer was a long-time friend of Trump. The journalist claims the relevant conversation between Trump and Cohen was about buying that NDA contract from AMI, which Cohen recommended, for the obvious reason of making absolutely sure of McDougal’s silence. But it was never done. It appears that Cohen or his lawyer told this to the journalist. This tape was among the millions of materials the FBI got about two months ago when they raided Cohen’s places with a court order.

Stormy Daniels is another woman who had such a NDA with Trump, who claims they had a one-night affair in 2006. Both NDAs were for purpose of silencing the two women prior to the election. Cohen negotiated the NDA with Daniels on behalf of Trump and paid her $130,000 for her silence.

It is reported that Trump said of this tape that Cohen made, “I can’t believe Michael did that to me.” Why not? Trump reportedly has often taped his conversations with people without them knowing about it. And last year he indicated as much by threatening former FBI Director James Comey, whom he fired, that he may have taped their conversations.

Michael Avenatti, Daniel’s present lawyer, just said on TV that Cohen taped many conversations he had with Donald Trump before he was president. New York law, contrary to some states, allows taping a two-way conversation without the other persons’ knowledge. Avenatti also claims Trump proved how “dumb” he is because knows so much damaging information about Trump, with evidence such as tapes, emails, phone calls, documents, yet Trump refused Cohen’s request that Trump give him a position in the White House. In fact, when Trump became president it has been much reported that Trump has continually distanced himself from Cohen while also saying to the media, even recently, that Michael Cohen is his friend, a good guy, and his “personal attorney” even though government prosecutors now say Cohen has not much legal work for Trump in recent years. Avenatti’s point is that Trump was stupid in not meeting Cohen’s request since Cohen has so much damaging evidence against him.

Another stupid thing Trump has done is hire Giuliani as his attorney for advise and to intervene with the media. About all Giuliani does is make Trump’s situation worse.

Another dumb thing Trump has done is how he acted on his trip to Europe last week, especially his press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin Monday. Putin is playing Trump like a fiddle, a puppet on a string, or Trump being in Putin’s pocket. It looks like Trump is giving away the store–our democracy that is. He was surprised when both the press coverage of it and the response by his own aid was so negative. That just shows that he doesn’t get it. The Senate then voted 98 to 2 this week to reject Putin’s offer to send the 12 Russian counter-intelligence officers who the FBI says meddled in our election if the U.S. sends two of our people to Russia to be interviewed. When Putin had announced that offer in the press conference Monday, Trump replied by saying it was “an incredible idea.”

Trump is so dumb about being the U.S. president because he is man who does not read books and says he goes with his gut. He says it is because he is so smart and has uncanny intuition. Dumb! That is an attribute of the classic narcissist that he is. When it was suggested he is questionable psychologically, he said, “I’m a stable genius.” It is so difficult for me to believe that we have this man for our president. This New Yorker real estate developer should have just stayed on the golf course and done as they say in NYC–fawgetaboutit!

How have we been here before? It was the so-called “Butterfield Tapes” that really brought down President Richard Nixon. But the shoe was on the other foot. That is, President Nixon did the taping without people knowing it. Those tapes revealed that Nixon, who talked about it, was orchestrating a coverup of the Watergate break-in. It led to Congress beginning impeachment proceedings against Nixon. He then resigned in disgrace. (One of my caddies on the PGA Tour used to caddie for Trump at Winged Foot, where he was a member.)

As I have said repeatedly for some time, I think Trumpgate will make Watergate look like a Sunday school picnic.

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