Could Trump pardon Cohen?

jeffl

If it looks like Cohen is going to be indicted, can Trump promise to pardon him so he won’t rat him out?


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FilmCarp

Well, if admitting guilt implicates Trump that rats him out anyway, right?  I am not even sure what he is charged with yet.


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jeffl

This is hypothetical.  I’m just hearing that Cohen is in hot water.  If it looks like he’s good to plead out, can Trump swoop in and offer a pardon?

FilmCarp said:
Well, if admitting guilt implicates Trump that rats him out anyway, right?  I am not even sure what he is charged with yet.



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BG9


jeffl said:
If it looks like Cohen is going to be indicted, can Trump promise to pardon him so he won’t rat him out?

Why not?

Such a coincidence that Scooter Libby was just pardoned.

I think the Libby pardon is a reminder to Cohen, Manafort, et al., that pardons are "available."  Provided they keep their mouths shut.


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Judith

He could but if The Southern District of New York is able to bring parallel state charges against him, I don’t see how the pardon will save him. Pardons only work for federal crimes. (As I understand). 


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LOST


ElizMcCord said:
He could but if The Southern District of New York is able to bring parallel state charges against him, I don’t see how the pardon will save him. Pardons only work for federal crimes. (As I understand). 

"The Southern District" refers to the Federal Court covering Manhattan and the Bronx. The Manhattan District Attorney and/or the NY State Attorney-General bring State charges.


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Morganna

Yes. I don't see the benefit of the whole presidential pardon thing for the country. This may make us rethink this privilege.


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Judith


LOST said:



ElizMcCord said:
He could but if The Southern District of New York is able to bring parallel state charges against him, I don’t see how the pardon will save him. Pardons only work for federal crimes. (As I understand). 

"The Southern District" refers to the Federal Court covering Manhattan and the Bronx. The Manhattan District Attorney and/or the NY State Attorney-General bring State charges.

Ah. Didn’t know that thanks. 


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Jasmo

There may be a problem limiting NY prosecutions in the very broad NY double jeopardy law if Trump pardons Cohen. The AG is trying to rush through a change in the law:


New York Attorney General Seeks Power to Bypass Presidential Pardons https://nyti.ms/2H9Bkna


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yahooyahoo

One of the theories about the short list of charges brought against Manafort is that Mueller is saving some in the event Trump pardons Manafort.  Then state charges (in NY) can be brought against Manafort for the remaining alleged crimes.


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Michael

A lot depends on  how much evidence they found in Cohen's offices.  The damage has already been done so I get the feeling Trump will start attacking Cohen if Cohen accepts a deal.  


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Judith

I long for the day Trump will need a public defender because he fired everyone and nobody will take him on as a client. 


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Tom
ElizMcCord said:
I long for the day Trump will need a public defender because he fired everyone and nobody will take him on as a client. 

 It's already heading in that direction. Trump has trouble finding lawyers willing to work for him.

I recommend today's edition of The Daily, the podcast from the NY Times. It's a long story about Michael Cohen. The guy and the people he associates with are filthy with crime and corruption.


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Morganna
ElizMcCord said:
I long for the day Trump will need a public defender because he fired everyone and nobody will take him on as a client. 

 Well he has resurrected Rudy.


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dianaid

Trump can pardon Cohen prior to there even being charges brought against him (think Ford pardoning Nixon).  However, once you are pardoned, it functions like immunity.  If Cohen refuses to testify, he cannot plead the fifth amendment and can be held in contempt of court - no judge thinks fondly upon that especially federal ones - until he testifies.    And, as above, this only works in federal court, not state court with the NYAG pushing to limit the double jeopardy change.


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nohero

Enjoyed reading this over coffee this morning.


For years Mr. Trump treated Mr. Cohen poorly, with gratuitous insults, dismissive statements and, at least twice, threats of being fired, according to interviews with a half-dozen people familiar with their relationship.

“Donald goes out of his way to treat him like garbage,” said Roger J. Stone Jr., Mr. Trump’s informal and longest-serving political adviser, who, along with Mr. Cohen, was one of five people originally surrounding the president when he was considering a presidential campaign before 2016.

Now, for the first time, the traffic may be going Mr. Cohen’s way. Mr. Trump’s lawyers and advisers have become resigned to the strong possibility that Mr. Cohen, who has a wife and two children and faces the prospect of devastating legal fees, if not criminal charges, could end up cooperating with federal officials who are investigating him for activity that could relate, at least in part, to work he did for Mr. Trump.


https://www.nytimes.com/2018/0...


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Morganna
nohero said:
Enjoyed reading this over coffee this morning.


For years Mr. Trump treated Mr. Cohen poorly, with gratuitous insults, dismissive statements and, at least twice, threats of being fired, according to interviews with a half-dozen people familiar with their relationship.

“Donald goes out of his way to treat him like garbage,” said Roger J. Stone Jr., Mr. Trump’s informal and longest-serving political adviser, who, along with Mr. Cohen, was one of five people originally surrounding the president when he was considering a presidential campaign before 2016.

Now, for the first time, the traffic may be going Mr. Cohen’s way. Mr. Trump’s lawyers and advisers have become resigned to the strong possibility that Mr. Cohen, who has a wife and two children and faces the prospect of devastating legal fees, if not criminal charges, could end up cooperating with federal officials who are investigating him for activity that could relate, at least in part, to work he did for Mr. Trump.


https://www.nytimes.com/2018/0...

 Thanks for sharing, I'm going to pour another cup and drink a toast.


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cramer

ABC News is reporting that the lawyers representing Michael Cohen have left the case and that Cohen is likely to cooperate with federal prosecutors in the South District of New York. 

https://abcnews.go.com/US/trump-lawyer-michael-cohen-cooperate-attorneys-leave-case/story?id=55861988

Trump has reason to worry - a lot.  

"Now, however, the Southern District can investigate potential Trump crimes in any area connected to Cohen, a fixer who is known to have arranged payoffs to an adult film star who says she had an affair with Trump. These prosecutors can go back as far as they want before the election, not to mention during and after it.

And there’s essentially nothing Trump can do about it. He can’t fire the career civil servant prosecutors who are now on the job. And practically, he can’t order the Southern District to stop investigating him, because such an order would likely be construed by the prosecutors there as a criminal obstruction of justice.

The Southern District team can’t bring Trump to trial while he is president. But if it finds evidence of felonies involving Trump, the team could name him as an unindicted co-conspirator in charges against Cohen. That would tell the world that the president is a crook. It would put substantial pressure on Congress to impeach Trump. And, after Trump’s presidency ends, whether at the end of his term or before, a criminal prosecution could await. The prospect of a trial would loom over whatever time in the presidency he has left."

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-04-16/trump-cohen-and-mueller-a-turning-point-in-the-presidency


"Cohen as cooperating witness could provide info on:
* Trump Org finances
* use of threats, blackmail, bribes
* Russian mafia (and other mafias)"

https://twitter.com/sarahkendzior/status/1006911654657814530




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DottyParker

Oh but to be a fly on the wall at the White House.  




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cramer

"9/ So if Cohen cooperates, he will have to tell almost all of what he knows about criminal activity to federal prosecutors, who can share that info with Mueller, other federal prosecutors, and state prosecutors.

10/ Trump could derail all of this with a pardon of Cohen. His recent talk of pardons appears to be an attempt to reduce the political damage of giving pardons. If Trump pardoned Cohen for federal crimes, state prosecutors would have to use the evidence gathered by the FBI.

11/ That could result in a cooperation deal for state, not federal authorities. By moving towards cooperation now, Cohen is signaling that he doesn’t believe he will receive a pardon—or he’s trying to get one sooner rather than later."

https://twitter.com/renato_mariotti/status/1006917686050291712




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cramer

CNN is reporting that Cohen does have a new lawyer and that so far Cohen has not met with prosecutors to talk about a potential deal. 

A person "close to Cohen" says he's sending up a smoke signal to Trump for help.


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tjohn

How can a presidential pardon of a person who could implicate you in criminal activity not be obstruction of justice?


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mrincredible
tjohn said:
How can a presidential pardon of a person who could implicate you in criminal activity not be obstruction of justice?

 Simple. If the government body which has the sole law enforcement jurisdiction over your behavior chooses to look the other way.


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tjohn
mrincredible said:


tjohn said:
How can a presidential pardon of a person who could implicate you in criminal activity not be obstruction of justice?
 Simple. If the government body which has the sole law enforcement jurisdiction over your behavior chooses to look the other way.

Oh, the part where the Republican Party lost their spines and souls and allowed the American Kim Jong Un to ride roughshod over what are supposed to be checks and balances.


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LOST
tjohn said:
How can a presidential pardon of a person who could implicate you in criminal activity not be obstruction of justice?

 Because the President gets to define "justice".


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