News & Politics

'The president is a crook': Legal experts tear into Trump as he lies and says new court filings 'clear' him

Trump claims that the court filings against Cohen "clear" him. They do not.

Photo Credit: Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks

In response to the two court filings made by federal prosecutors against Michael Cohen on Friday, President Donald Trump took to the internet.

And this time, unlike his early morning outburst in which the president seemed to be on the verge of panic, Trump confidently proclaimed that the new filings mean he is proven innocent and home free.

Only one problem: he isn't.

In fact, the filings allege Trump (referred to as "Individual-1") was heavily involved in his former personal attorney's illegal financial activities, and that when Cohen committed campaign finance violations to make a hush payment to porn star Stormy Daniels to keep her affair with Trump under wraps, he did so "in coordination with and at the direction of" Trump. They also suggest that special counsel Robert Mueller is looking into Cohen's lies to the public, which sets a bad precedent for Trump.

Trump's seeming conviction that he has been "cleared" was not shared by legal experts, who broadly agreed the memos pose serious problems for him:

One lawyer who corrected Trump was George Conway, husband of White House counselor and former Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway:

But perhaps the best topline summary of the report's implications for Trump came from former Justice Department official and MSNBC legal analyst Matthew Miller:

It would behoove Trump to discuss the implications of these filings with attorneys before blurting out on Twitter that they "clear" him. If he had, he would have been told something very different.

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Matthew Chapman is a video game designer, science fiction author, and political reporter from Austin, TX. Follow him on Twitter @fawfulfan.