The Trial Continues

Trump’s lawyers are now grilling Michael Cohen. No blow-ups so far, but the crew at the New York Times believes Todd Blanche is trying to goad Cohen into one.

The prosecution has announced that Cohen is their last witness. They had one more lined up, a publisher, but decided they didn’t need that person. Most of the rest of the trial week probably will be Trump’s lawyers beating up Michael Cohen. And then it’s the defense’s turn to make a case for itself, if it’s going to. I haven’t heard if they plan to call witnesses or just rest without a defense, which they are allowed to do. So this trial could possibly wrap up next week.

Trump Nap Watch Update: Susanne Craig of the NY Times writes, “As Michael Cohen testifies, Trump has dropped his head repeatedly and appears to be struggling to stay awake.”

Trump Goon Squad Update: Reuters has a special report on threats of violence from Trump supporters. See Trump blasts his trial judges. Then his fans call for violence.

5 thoughts on “The Trial Continues

  1. Trump was at a rally at the Jersey shore a few days ago, someone posted a video of it, where people were leaving the stands. His voice sounded weak and tired to me.

    Roger Stone tried to fool people with a photo of massive crowds in attendance, but someone figured out it was actually from a Rod Stewart concert held on the beach in Rio de Janeiro, decades ago. 

    George Conway, who has a wicked sense of humor, posted I’ve always wanted to visit Rio de Newjersio.  Rio's mountains to the sea are obvious in the photo, something nowhere to be found in New Jersey. Stone thinks everyone is as dumb as he is.

    There was some speculation that Keith Schiller, Trump's bodyguard at the Stormy tryst would testify, but apparently not. He's hardly needed.

    Paul Waldman wrote The Places and Spaces of Donald Trump, how his followers must make a physical pilgrimage to be near their hero, and the uniforms they wear as part of the cult (for male VP candidates, dark suit and red tie, just like DJT) –

    …Then there’s Mar-a-Lago, where every Republican whose obedience had been questioned must make their pilgrimage. Some go there even when not invited for a meeting, so they can snap selfies and tell the folks back home that they were there in that Trumpiest of locales.

    And of course, you have Trump’s rallies, which have always had the flavor of Grateful Dead concerts: a fanatical fan base adorned in clothing signaling belonging to the group, telling each other proudly how many shows they’ve been to.

    No matter how far you are from the stage, your corporeal presence in his space testifies to the degree to which he defines your own identity. Just like a concert or sporting event, it’s a communal experience shared with others who feel the same things you feel, both about your favorite musician or athlete and in the moment itself.
     

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  2. Trump got his political cheerleaders out today to NY and on the networks news to say the things Trump is prohibited from saying. A lot of people need to be betting their political futures on Trump winning because if Trump goes down in flames and to prison, there needs to be no forgiveness – ever – for Rick Scott, Mike Johnson, and the rest of the clowns who repeated Trump's lies about the integrity of the trial. I do not fault someone for showing up to support Trump, but lying to the press about the judge, his daughter, and impugning the sanctity of the trial is not a political misdemeanor.

    I think (from what I read) that Cohen is holding up. That is – his testimony seems to fit with the physical evidence and the testimony of other witnesses. Much as Trump wants to claim the case is falling apart in the eyes of the jury, I don't think so. The defense, if they hold to the opening statement, will be that Trump never had a sexual relationship with Stormy Danials or Karen McDougal. BUT Trump paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to silence them from telling about sexual encounters that Trump's lawyers say now – never happened.  And the jury is gonna buy that??!! That women Trump did not know successfully shook Trump down in two separate extortion schemes both of which Trump paid for?? 

    Whether or not Trump dipped his wick is NOT the point. Whether you trust Trump becomes a critical issue to the jury. Cohen testified that Trump wanted to agree to pay Daniels and stall until after the election. Because the story after the election would not matter. (FU, Melania.) Daniels saw thru that and told her lawyer to get the money NOW (before the election) or they would get nothing. So Cohen was drafted to pay or Stormy was gonna void any agreement. 

    There's a perfectly ethical defense strategy built around raising "reasonable doubt" in the minds of the jurors. It requires the defense spin a reasonable alternate story within the same facts that the prosecution established. Trump hung his theory on a set of "facts" no reasonable person will accept. (I think.) If the defense sticks to their opening statement, Cohen forked out 130K to save Trump WITHOUT TRUMP'S KNOWLEGE. Because Cohen is a sweet Boy Scout who was then obsessed with protecting Trump. (In the next breath the defense will defame Cohen as a bottom-dwelling blood-sucking, greedy lawyer. But the defense will say Cohen paid SD 130K without consulting Trump.) The alternate reality spun by the defense has to be plausible and it's NOT.

    I'll really be surprised if the jury deliberates more than a day before returning a guilty verdict. What I read is that some are taking notes and all are paying more attention than the defendant. I hope I have time to read the exact instructions to the jury. The nuances of what elements need to be proved to what degree will be important. 

    We will know next week

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  3. All the past instances of his rage-tweeting in the wee hours of the morning and now this persistent dozing in court; I am convinced it has long been the Orange Turd's daily routine to sleep until around noon.

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  4. If the jury is not convinced yet, it will never be.  Only the republican goons fail to see the obvious.  

    Why is it that they who see conspiracies everywhere cannot see one in their midst.  Foul is not foul when it is one of them that reeks of corruption. 

    I need to amend and correct my previous comment.  Michael Cohen did say he had been knee-deep in the Trump cult, so I was wrong that he did not present himself as a former cult member.  He did in those words.  It communicates much and one can envision the blind level of servitude that demands.  

    I also failed to mention that the judge has allowed the false financial records (alone a misdemeanor) to be linked to three other possible crimes to elevate them to felony status.  One authority supposed this would be elaborated upon in the jury instructions.  

    They, the jury, have much power, and it would be great if the republican goons would be quiet and let them do their job.   

    They had a chance to fix this problem during two impeachments.  It is out of their hands now.  They fumbled it twice.  

     

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