Connect with us

Politics

FBI raids Trump lawyer Michael Cohen’s office for details on payment to Stormy Daniels

Published

on

The New York Times, which was the first to report the search of Cohen’s office, said it involved several other topics besides the Daniels payment.

There is a pending complaint filed with the Federal Election Commission by the group Common Cause, alleging that the payment to Daniels by the Trump campaign violates the Federal Election Campaign Act. Common Cause also forwarded a copy of its complaint to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who is overseeing the Mueller probe, and the DOJ’s Criminal Division and Public Integrity Section, requesting a criminal investigation.

Both the FEC and the Justice Department have jurisdiction over certain campaign laws, but the department can additionally prosecute campaign act violations involving false information provided to the commission.

The adult film star has also sued the president to void the nondisclosure agreement arranged by Cohen, alleging that it is invalid because Trump never signed it. She has described it as a “hush” agreement intended to buy her silence before Election Day.

She has also offered to give back the money she was paid so she can speak freely about the alleged affair — she said on “60 Minutes” recently that the two had sex once in 2006 — and release any text messages, photos and videos she might have.

Cohen also is reportedly a key figure in Mueller’s probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and the purported collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin.

Mueller has also examined the role Cohen played in important events related to the Russia probe, particularly a Trump real estate deal in Moscow and a peace proposal for Ukraine described as Russia-friendly and delivered to Cohen by a Ukrainian lawmaker a week after Trump took office, according to The Washington Post.

In October, Cohen was questioned by congressional investigators digging into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election, NBC News previously reported. Cohen was grilled over the scuttled plan to build a Trump Tower in Moscow and emails he received in 2015 from Felix Sater, a former Trump associate, about the real estate deal.

Cohen downplayed those conversations, in which Sater bragged about his access to top Kremlin officials, saying it was about “a real estate deal and nothing more.” Adam Schiff of California, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, described Cohen as “fully cooperative with the investigation.”

Source link

Politics

CEOs discuss pulling donations, additional public statements to fight voting bills

Published

on

More than 120 CEOs, business leaders, attorneys and experts came together on Saturday afternoon to discuss further action against voting legislation nationwide, call attendees told NBC News.

The group discussed numerous options for pushing back on the GOP-led efforts to restrict access to the ballot box including pulling donations, refusing to relocate business or jobs to states that pass restrictive measures, and moving events, said one of the call’s organizers, Jeffrey Sonnenfeld.

“It was incredibly concrete,” he told NBC News.

The meeting was first reported Sunday by The Wall Street Journal.

A wide variety of industries were represented on the call: financial, pharmaceutical, travel, technology, retail, and transportation. Notable attendees included Brad Karp of the law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, Mellody Hobson of Ariel Investments, Chip Bergh of Levi Strauss and Arthur Blank, Home Depot co-founder and owner of the Atlanta Falcons.

Representatives of AMC Theaters and three major airlines were also in attendance.

Major corporations’ recent foray into the election policy debate comes as Republicans across the country work to advance hundreds of restrictions, changes that voting rights advocates and civil rights groups argue would disproportionately affect voters of color. Earlier this month, several major corporations spoke out against a restrictive new law in Georgia and pending legislation in Texas, while Major League Baseball announced it would move the All-Star Game out of Atlanta in protest of the state’s law.

Republicans immediately pushed back.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said that it is “stupid” for corporations to take stances on divisive political issues, before warning corporate America to “stay out of politics.” (He softened his stance a day later, saying, “I didn’t say that very artfully yesterday. They’re certainly entitled to be involved in politics. They are. My principal complaint is they didn’t read the darn bill,” referring to Georgia’s recently enacted law.)

Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, a Republican, called the corporate response “nonsense,” and said American Airlines’ CEO should “go away” after the airline denounced a GOP-sponsored bill under consideration in the state where it is headquartered. Republican lawmakers in Texas advanced another restrictive voting bill out of the state House Thursday.

Sonnenfeld said he and other organizers invited more than 120 CEOs and hoped a dozen would join. Ninety turned out with just 48 hours’ notice — with a few calling in from Augusta, Georgia, where the Masters Tournament was underway — for the 2 p.m. ET call Saturday. Organizers left the Zoom room open after they wrapped up at 3:10 p.m., because attendees were still active in the chat.

“The overriding spirit is they don’t want politicians using wedge issues to try and solidify their hold on office, because that leads to angry communities and finger-pointing workforces and divided shareholders. It makes their job as CEOs harder to manage these constituents. They want social harmony,” Sonnenfeld told NBC News.

The Black Economic Alliance is coordinating a public statement that’s likely to be released this week, said Mike Ward, co-founder of the Civic Alliance, a nonpartisan group that encourages civic participation from businesses.

Ward said he’s helping organizers to follow up with companies on their responses and expects that a number of companies will come out in favor of federal voting legislation in the coming weeks.

House Democrats recently passed a sweeping voting rights bill, the For the People Act, which would create a federal floor of election access and regulations. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., has promised it would get a vote in the full Senate, but its chances of passage are slim because of the 60-vote threshold in chamber currently split 50-50.

Democrats are also expected to reintroduce the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, which would update and strengthen the Voting Rights Act, this year.

Sonnenfeld said the call’s strong attendance as a “statement of defiance” against Republican pushback to corporate criticism.

“We had the top brass of American Airlines, United Airlines, and Delta. If they’re going to boycott airlines, they better have their own jet,” he said.



Source link

Continue Reading

Politics

Boris told to rip up Brexit deal as Britain waits for EU ratification – 'Pull plug NOW!'

Published

on

BORIS JOHNSON has been told to “pull the plug” on the post-Brexit trade deal with the European Union as Brussels continues to drag its feet over ratifying the agreement.

Source link

Continue Reading

Politics

Furious Nicola Sturgeon lashes out at Boris over Indyref2 – 'Can't stand in the way!'

Published

on

NICOLA Sturgeon has furiously lashed out at Boris Johnson over a second Scottish independence referendum, as she argued the Prime Minister “cannot stand in the way”.

Source link

Continue Reading

Trending