‘It’s Not the Crime, It’s the Cover-Up,’ ‘Follow the Money’ and Other Political Scandal Clichés That Now Apply to Trump

I don’t care about what Donald Trump did with Stormy Daniels, Karen McDougal or anyone else with whom he may or may not have cheated on his wife. But I do care about what Trump and the Trump campaign may have done to cover it up. I care about Daniels being approached and threatened. I care about a payment from Trump’s attorney to keep her silent days before 2016 election.

For record, I do not want to forget Natasha Stoynoff, Rachel Crooks, Cathy Heller, Kristin Anderson, Summer Zervos, Mindy McGillivray, Jill Harth, Jessica Leeds, Temple Taggart McDowell, Karena Virginia, Jennifer Murphy, Ninni Laaksonen, Jessica Drake, and any other woman whose contact with Trump was not consensual. I care about them. I care about Trump labeling everyone of them “liars,” threatening to sue (which, like with a lot of threats, he never followed through).

Also for the record, if I hear, “…but what about Bill Clinton?” one more time, I’m going to scream. Bill Clinton being a sexual harasser or assaulter is not a license for Donald Trump to attack women. It’s a pathetic argument that I don’t want to hear anymore.

It’s not the crime, it’s the cover-up. Since Richard Nixon uttered the immortal words, “You could get a million dollars. You could get it in cash. I know where it could be gotten. It is not easy, but it could be done. But the question is who the hell would handle it? Any ideas on that?”—there’s been much repeated refrain about the cover-up which inevitably follows a usually ill-conceived “crime.”

According to Daniels (I will not follow the TV journalists who now routinely refer to her simply as “Stormy”), she had a one-night stand with Trump and was paid off to keep quiet. The going price for such a hush agreement is apparently $130,000 (an odd amount, no?). She says she was threatened with some henchman approaching her in a parking lot as she was unloading her child.

At a Monday press briefing, White House spokesman Raj Shah—can’t you just see Sarah Huckabee Sanders giving herself an elbow-pull-back “YES” when she knew it would be Shah’s briefing?—gave a very strange response when asked about Daniels’s claim that she was threatened.

Shah didn’t say Daniels was mistaken if she thinks the goon was sent by Trump or the Trump campaign. He didn’t throw out the possibility that it was an overzealous Trump supporter. He said she was lying—that the president didn’t believe her because there was no one there at the time to corroborate her story. Really? I would think if Trump or his people sent Mugsy to scare Daniels, he wouldn’t be doing his job if there was someone there to corroborate it.


Follow the money. Trump attorney Michael Cohen would have us believe that he gave Stormy Daniels $130,000 out of his own pocket. I have enough lawyers in my family to know that this is not only not done, it’s unethical. But then again, we’re talking about someone connected to Trump.

Cohen is now threatening Daniels with a lawsuit seeking $20 million in damages for Daniels breaking a nondisclosure agreement. If Trump did have that one-night roll with her, why is his lawyer paying her to zip it. Then there is the whole world of potential campaign finance law violations. If Trump didn’t reimburse Cohen, his payment to Daniels could be construed as an in-kind campaign contribution that went unreported.

This whole tawdry affair of sex, lies and possible video tape may have cost some Russians their residency. Is it a coincidence that the Russians got the boot the morning after the Stormy Daniels much-hyped 60 Minutes appearance? I doubt it. They were shown the door ostensibly in solidarity with our allies, particularly the UK, who are plenty upset about Putin pulling a KAOS move and offed a former UK spy right there on English soil. Trump, until the expulsion, had never even criticized Putin for the assassination or brought up in that congratulatory call.

Maybe Rex Tillerson is right. Maybe Trump is a f****** moron. He is quickly turning into a cliché.