President Trump sat down with Fox & Friends amid his tumultuous week, and the interview that aired Thursday morning is making headlines on a number of fronts:
- The money: The cash that Michael Cohen paid to women so they remained quiet about alleged affairs was not a violation of campaign finance rules, said Trump. His rationale? The money came from him personally, not from his campaign. The payments "weren’t taken out of the campaign finance, that’s the big thing,” Trump said, per Fox News. "They didn’t come out of the campaign, they came from me." But some, including Jonathan Chait at New York, think Trump just accidentally admitted to a crime.
- On flipping: Trump says Cohen made a deal for a lighter sentence, asserting that people in that situation "just make up lies" to prosecutors. "It's called flipping and it almost ought to be illegal," adding, "it's not a fair thing." He laid a hypothetical scenario in which "you get 10 years in jail, but if you say bad things about somebody in other words, make up stories if you don’t know. Make up. They just make up lies. I’ve seen it many times."
- On impeachment: Trump predicted bad things for the US if Democrats win control of the House and impeach him, per Politico. First of all, "I don't know how you can impeach somebody who has done a great job," he said. But "if I ever got impeached, I think the market would crash. I think everybody would be very poor because ... you would see numbers that you wouldn't believe, in reverse."
- On a pardon: Trump did not rule out pardoning Paul Manafort when asked directly about the possibility, notes Politico. He said he had "great respect" for his former campaign chief, adding, "I would say what he did, some of the charges they threw against him, every consultant, every lobbyist in Washington probably does."
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