Salon: Donald Trump Just Complicated His Defense of the Stormy Daniels Saga
President Donald Trump may have complicated his own legal situation with his recent comments about the $130,000 payment made to porn star Stormy Daniels, who claims she had an affair with him. Speaking with reporters about whether he knew that his lawyer, Michael Cohen, had made a $130,000 payment to Stormy Daniels (real name: Stephanie Clifford), Trump answered resoundingly in the negative, according to The New York Times.
"It's significant. One of the questions that had been unresolved until yesterday was whether Mr. Cohen had essentially just fronted the money and been repaid by the candidate," Adav Noti, senior director of trial litigation at the Campaign Legal Center and previously associate general counsel for policy at the Federal Election Commission, told Salon. "Cohen had said that he wasn't by the Trump Organization or the Trump campaign, but he had been a little vague about whether the candidate had repaid him. There is no limit on how much a candidate can spend on their own election, so if in fact the candidate had paid $130,000, we still would have had a reporting violation but it wouldn't have been otherwise illegal."
Noti added, "But now we know that the candidate didn't pay it, so that means that pretty much no matter who reimbursed Cohen, you have at a minimum an illegal excessive contribution, and you also have the possibility that it could have come from a corporate source, and corporate contributions are illegal, and it also could have come from a foreign source, and foreign contributions are illegal.