Donald Trump may be facing something he has never known in his life: consequences.
He has bluffed and lied his way through his entire existence, and managed to (likely illegally) capture the reins to the U.S. Presidency with no visible scars to show for it. Today, on Air Force One, he may have sealed his own fate.
Golf on the TV behind him, (OF COURSE HE WAS WATCHING GOLF WHY WOULD HE WATCH NEWS OR READ SOMETHING) he was asked, yet again, about his knowledge of the $130,000 payout to Stormy Daniels. This time he actually claimed outright ignorance. Said he did not know about it. When asked where his lawyer, Michael Cohen, got the money to pay Daniels for her silence before the election, he stated, "Michael Cohen is my attorney and you would have to ask him. He made the payment."
Avenatti took pains to emphasize not Trump, but Michael Cohen in this scene as it plays out. Not only does Cohen face disbarment for now having conducted this legal transaction without Trump's knowledge (wink, wink)...he now has to face Mueller and his team of brilliant lawyers and investigative team...who are not exactly known for their soft touch and sloppy work.
That's a lot of pressure on one fixer. If he breaks, Avenatti predicts doom for Trump. Michael Cohen knows where all the bodies are buried. Figuratively speaking. I think.
AVENATTI: Ari, if I could touch base on one issue? Because I think that what we saw earlier today is really part and parcel of a movement that we have seen in the administration for the last 10 days in my perspective. More and more weight is being placed on the shoulders of Michael Cohen. More and more eggs are being placed in the Michael Cohen basket. If this guy doesn't hold up ultimately, whether it's in connection with this case or with Robert Mueller, katy bar the door. Very bad things could happen in this administration. They are putting a lot of faith and a lot of confidence of Michael Cohen's ability to hold up whether it be questioning questioning by Mueller or otherwise.
MELBER: Are you suggesting that what Donald Trump just did would not only hurt Michael Cohen but add to the pressure on him that could ultimately be significant because you believe that Michael Cohen knows a lot of long-term secrets about Donald Trump and his business?
AVENATTI: There's no question. And if they ultimately, if Michael Cohen is ultimately in a position where he cannot withstand the pressure that has been placed upon him and he cracks, and rolls on the president, very, very bad things can happen, they can pierce the attorney-client privilege by way of the crime fraud exception perhaps. There could be very, very serious consequences. What's happened in the last 7 to 14 days, they are setting up Michael Cohen to be the fall guy. Michael Cohen is going to say I never told the president, never talked to him. If that means i'm going to lose my license, it means i'm going to lose my license, et cetera, et cetera. That only works so far for so long. So he had better be ready to withstand huge amounts of pressure, as this case and Mueller's investigation goes forward. I don't know him personally, but from what I have seen and the statements I have seen him make, I don't think he has the mettle to withstand it, and that could be a very, very bad thing for the administration.
MELBER: You think the heat that's going to be put on Michael Cohen will be too much for him now?
AVENATTI: No question.