“Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s longtime confidant and former personal attorney,” ABC reported Wednesday, “is likely to cooperate with federal investigators, as his lawyers are expected to leave the case” for “fee reasons.” That leaves Cohen staring down the barrel of the Friday deadline for review of more than 3.7 million documents the FBI seized in the April 9 raids of his office and home. Those documents are in the care of judge Kimba Wood of the Southern District of New York, a person of considerable interest.
Wood was on Bill Clinton’s short list for attorney general but after revelations of her false-documented nanny, the president and First Lady Hillary Clinton, who insisted that a woman get the job, opted for Janet Reno. In 2013, Kimba Wood presided over the marriage of George Soros to his third wife. The leftist billionaire gave $10 million to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, making him one of her top donors.
When Special Counsel Robert Mueller outsourced the Cohen probe to Wood, former Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka tweeted, “Now she has power over the lawyer who works for the man who beat Bill’s wife in the 2016 election, WHERE’S THE RECUSAL?” There was none, and Wood is not the only Clinton crony on the case.
Cohen argued that his attorneys should get the first look at the materials seized in the raids for items potentially covered by attorney-client privilege before federal prosecutors could get to it. Judge Wood instead appointed former federal judge Barbara Jones to act as a “special master” to conduct the document review. Jones is a former federal judge nominated in 1995 by President Clinton, doubtless with the approval of First Lady Hillary Clinton.
As of last week, Jones had reviewed 300,000 documents and determined that only 162 were covered by attorney-client privilege. And as ABC also reported, Jones “rejected three items that Cohen, Trump or the Trump organization had designated as privileged.” That gives some sense of what the unrepresented Cohen faces on Friday, and it supports President Trump’s tweet following the raid that “Attorney-client privilege is dead!”
The day before Cohen’s attorneys bailed, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Special Counsel Mueller, threatened members of the House with, as some saw it, criminal investigation. Attorney General Jeff Sessions told Fox News he was “confident that Deputy Rosenstein, after 28 years in the Department of Justice, did not improperly threaten anyone on that occasion.”
That pathetic performance supports Trump’s contention that Sessions was not the best man for the job. It also calls to mind Trey Gowdy’s claim that “the FBI did exactly what my fellow citizens would want them to do” when they planted spies in the Trump campaign. By all indications, the FBI assigned no spies to the Hillary Clinton and Jill Stein campaigns.
Today, one day after Cohen’s attorneys bailed, DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz releases his long awaited report on the Clinton email investigation. This report will jostle with FBI-DOJ stars such as James Comey, General Loretta Lynch, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok and Lisa Page. It’s being billed as a “bombshell,” but the president wonders if the DOJ, which in effect is investigating itself, will smooth out any rough edges.
As President Trump has also noted, former FBI boss Robert Mueller, allegedly a man of great integrity, has bulked up his team with partisan Democrats and Clinton donors. In similar style, Trump attorney Michael Cohen finds himself in the hands of Clinton cronies judge Kimba Wood, also a George Soros groupie, and special master Barbara Wood.
After the FBI raid on Cohen’s office and home in April, Alan Dershowitz wondered how civil libertarians would respond if the FBI raided the offices of Hillary Clinton. Since she was never elected president, the Harvard man misses the true parallel.
Imagine that in early 2009 the FBI had raided the offices and home of President Obama’s personal attorney Bob Bauer, whom the president also named the attorney of the Democratic Party. Imagine that partisan Republicans and McCain donors dominated the ensuring investigation, perhaps looking into the president’s identifying documents and demanding the academic records he had blocked. The response would amount to civil war.
Meanwhile, as Clinton cronies shake down Trump attorney Michael Cohen, the Democrats’ chief Russia collusion-monger Adam Schiff wants Ivanka Trump to testify before the House Intelligence Committee, along with her husband Jared Kushner. President Trump remains the primary target, of what is essentially a coup d’état.
On October 30, 2008, presidential candidate Barack Obama proclaimed, “We are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.” With the New Deal and Great Society, the nation was already a welfare state, so he had something else in mind.
In his vision, the outgoing president picks his successor and commandeers the intelligence, law enforcement and judicial agencies to make it happen. If voters don’t see it that way, as Peter Strzok said, there’s an “insurance policy” to make it work.
That’s the transformation now playing out in Washington. As President Trump said of the Korea summit, “we’ll see what happens.”