Trump crashes and burns after claiming he never directed Cohen to break the law
President Donald Trump launched into an astonishing, lie-filled tweet storm Thursday morning, one day after his longtime, now former attorney was sentenced to prison for acts done on behalf of Donald Trump to help him get elected president.
Trump began the day by trying to convince his base that after years of promising Mexico would pay for his wall – so frequently it was a staple at his campaign rallies nightly – he had "often stated" that, "One way or the other, Mexico is going to pay for the Wall."
Trump has not "often" made that claim, although NCRM found one instance of him saying it last year.
"Our new deal with Mexico (and Canada), the USMCA, is so much better than the old, very costly & anti-USA NAFTA deal, that just by the money we save, MEXICO IS PAYING FOR THE WALL!" Trump tweeted Thursday morning.
That is 100% false.
The president wasn't finished with his lie-fest.
"I never directed Michael Cohen to break the law," Trump said.
That too is false.
"He was a lawyer and he is supposed to know the law. It is called 'advice of counsel,' and a lawyer has great liability if a mistake is made. That is why they get paid. Despite that many campaign finance lawyers have strongly stated that I did nothing wrong with respect to campaign finance laws, if they even apply, because this was not campaign finance," Trump continued.
That too is false. Trump's personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, and possibly a few Fox News legal analysts, have made that claim, but they are not campaign finance lawyers.
"Cohen was guilty on many charges unrelated to me, but he plead to two campaign charges which were not criminal and of which he probably was not guilty even on a civil basis," Trump said.
Again, false. The judge made clear during Cohen's sentencing that "each of these crimes is a serious offense against the United States."
"Those charges were just agreed to by him in order to embarrass the president and get a much reduced prison sentence, which he did-including the fact that his family was temporarily let off the hook. As a lawyer, Michael has great liability to me!"
It's unclear what Trump is suggesting about Cohen's family, but Cohen's now-former attorney Lanny Davis Wednesday night told Rachel Maddow that Cohen flipped on Trump when he realized that as president Trump was a danger to Cohen's family.
Some responses to Trump's tweets:
Has anyone thought to tell @realDonaldTrump that he has the right to remain silent?— Matthew Miller (@Matthew Miller)1544708740.0
NARRATOR: Prosecutors say Trump directed Michael Cohen to break the law https://t.co/p9K8ZH4jPw— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar)1544709109.0
So, his defense is, my fixer, I mean, lawyer, told me how we could hide payments I knew were campaign finance viola… https://t.co/hlYNWfcUYN— Joyce Alene (@Joyce Alene)1544708953.0
The president doesn't get to determine what's criminal and what's not. https://t.co/4H7w0tqIDt— Jim Roberts (@Jim Roberts)1544708838.0
Another day, another opportunity for the president to make everyone stupider about the law.— Cristian Farias (@Cristian Farias)1544708658.0