Liberal Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz appeared Wednesday night on Fox News’ “Special Report” with Bret Baier — and essentially trashed liberals’ hopes that attorney Michael Cohen’s recent guilty plea may somehow result in the indictment or even the impeachment of President Donald Trump.
“It’s complicated,” said Dershowitz.
“The law is clear that the president may contribute to his own campaign,” he said. “So if the president had paid $280,000 to these two women, even if he had done so in order to help his campaign, that would be no problem — that’s legal. And if Cohen himself made the contribution, that would be unlawful because he has a limit of $5,200.”
“The prosecutor’s a little bit [of] a Catch-22,” said Dershowitz.
He explained that if the prosecutor accepts Cohen’s version of events — that the president directed him to do it — then there’s no crime. And if the prosecutor doesn’t believe Cohen’s story, it isn’t the president who would have committed a crime; rather, it would be Cohen himself.
He completely discounted some liberal pundits’ assertion that Cohen’s admission to a crime makes Trump an unindicted “co-conspirator,” noting further that it is matter of “basic criminal law.”
“[They are] just wrong,” said Dershowitz.
“You don’t become an unindicted co-conspirator if your action is lawful even though the action of the other person is unlawful.”
Dershowitz surmised that Cohen’s plea was part of an “add-on.”
He reasoned that they had Cohen “dead to rights” on tax-related charges and the taxicab medallions — but that prosecutors tacked on the allegedly illegal campaign donation nonsense in order to give Cohen the opportunity to cause headaches for the Trump administration.
“[The prosecutors] are not interested in Cohen,” said Dershowitz. “They’re interested in Trump.”
Dershowitz went on to say that paying “hush money” — payment exchanged for the silence of someone who may otherwise reveal embarrassing or damaging information — isn’t a crime at all, much less “in the bullseye of high crime or misdemeanor,” as Harry Litman, former deputy assistant attorney general, had laughably characterized it on MSNBC.
“It’s not even a close question,” said Dershowitz.
“It’s just not a crime to contribute to your own campaign,” he added.
“There is no statute that would make that a crime.”
“Show me the statute!” he said, pointing into the camera. “There is no statute that would make that a crime.”
Dershowitz noted that though it might be a misdemeanor for the campaign to fail to report the payment, that would be on the campaign — not on candidate Trump.
The new mantra of the Right, in the face of this most recent round of DOJ antics, might well become “show me the statute.”
See the video below — and then the tweets that follow:
With legal scholars like Alan Dershowitz and former FEC Chairmen saying there’s no possible campaign finance crime with the Stormy payment, which means Mueller did that one just for show, you know Mueller came up totally empty on Donald Trump.
— MARK SIMONE (@MarkSimoneNY) August 23, 2018
@AlanDersh is one of the few honest voices on this whole mess. I mean on both sides.
— Bill Sorg🐻♠️❌ (@WilliamSorgII) August 23, 2018
Applause to Dershowitz for keeping it real https://t.co/lTVT6khavp
— 🎙Wayne Dupree (@WayneDupreeShow) August 23, 2018
Michele Blood is a Flemington, New Jersey-based freelance writer and a regular contributor to LifeZette.