3 Reasons Why Former Trump Attorney Michael Cohen Is Going To Prison
On Wednesday, President Donald Trump's former attorney, Michael Cohen, was sentenced to a three-year sentence in federal prison.
Following the three-years in prison will be another three years of supervised release.
Fox News reports,
In court Wednesday, Cohen claimed loyalty to Mr. Trump led him to "take a path of darkness instead of light." Cohen described being in a "mental and physical incarceration," blaming his ties to the president as what brought him before the court Wednesday. He spoke of the president's recent attacks on him in which he called him a "liar," "rat" and weak. He said the president was "correct," but for a different reason.
There are three big reasons why Cohen will be serving prison time:
Fox News reports,
In the New York case, prosecutors accused Cohen of a years-long “tax evasion scheme” to avoid paying federal income taxes on more than $4 million made through a number of ventures, including through his ownership of taxi medallions, his selling of real estate in Florida and his consulting work for other clients.
What does this have to do with Trump and the Russia investigation? Nothing of course.
Campaign Finance Violations
As the CNN writes,
Cohen's sentence resulted from two cases. In August, he pleaded guilty in a Manhattan US attorney's case to two campaign-finance violations tied to payments he made or orchestrated to women during the campaign -- adult-film star Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal -- to stay silent about alleged sexual encounters with Trump.
Prosecutors have said that in executing the payments, Cohen "acted in coordination with and at the direction of" Trump, who has denied having the affairs with the two women.
It's this reason that some people suspect Trump could do jail time. However, there are a number of reasons why this probably won't happen. Two of the big reasons are that Obama violated campaign finance violations when he was running for office, and the next president could just pardon Trump.
Even more important though is that fact that the matter Michael Cohen pled guilty to is not even a crime!
The Federal Election Campaign Act holds that an “expenditure” is any “purchase, payment, loan, advance, deposit or gift of money, or anything of value, for the purpose of influencing any election for Federal office.” According to Cohen and the U.S. Attorney, the hush-money payments were, it appears, made in the hopes of preventing information from becoming public before the election, and hence were “for the purpose of influencing” the election. This means that, at a minimum, they had to be reported to the Federal Election Commission; further, if they were authorized by Mr. Trump, they would become, in the law’s parlance, “coordinated expenditures,” subject to limits on the amounts that could be spent. Since the lawful contribution limit is much lower than the payments made, and the payments were not reported, this looks like an open and shut case, right?
Well, no. Or at least not in the way some might presume. To the contrary, the law — following our common sense — tells us that the hush-money payments outlined by the U.S. Attorney are clearly not campaign expenditures. There is no violation of the Federal Election Campaign Act.
For these reasons, I don't think Trump has anything to worry about.
Lying to Congress
The Hill reports,
In August, Cohen plead guilty to eight charges including campaign finance violations and a single charge of lying to Congress about plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow that were never ultimately pursued.
It's no wonder that Trump called Cohen a liar, a rat, and weak.