Nice try, Rudy! Your idea looks slick despite the fact that it simply holds no water.
After the New York U.S. Attorney obtained Cohen’s books and records, it became obvious to all concerned that Trump had lied again about his involvement with Stormy. Giuliani wisely advised Trump to try to get out ahead of Mueller and admit that Trump had paid her off—and less wisely, proceeded to spill the beans on a few little tricks Trump used to cover his tracks.
Giuliani’s idea is based on the absence of limits to contributions by a candidate himself. Trump could have paid the $130,000 by himself and not violated any campaign finance limits—as there are none. Though the Trump campaign would have been legally required to report it, which is no doubt why they played their stupid game, fearing that could have revealed the problem.
Giuliani also believes that there is a difference between a political contribution dollar and a general contribution dollar and that money that doesn’t flow through the campaign (having been “funneled” elsewhere) somehow doesn’t count.
Since the payment of $130,000 by Cohen was clearly made on Trump’s behalf, as indicated in the written agreement ‘buying’ her silence, then all involved were likely violating campaign finance laws prohibiting such a transaction as an improper campaign contribution.
There simply is no difference between kinds of dollars. The distinction Giuliani is trying to peddle does not exist. A dollar is a dollar – the money itself has no meaning except for the value. The meaning—if there is any—is in the surrounding facts and story.
What is missing in his message is – not surprisingly—the facts! Those are too well known to bother to repeat here. They tell a clear story. Trump had a ‘romp’ with Daniels. Shortly before the election, she let it be known she intended to go public with that information. Trump ‘bought’ her silence, at least briefly. Then the problem shifted from the political arena (the campaign) to the legal issues which are now quite clear and painful for Trump.
Giuliani would like the world to stumble on his ‘niceties’ about the legal issues to quell the growing threat, and keep the basic surrounding story from gelling into something more dangerous than a long-ago dalliance with a porn star. While the legal risks are real, Trump must also worry that the Republican leadership in Congress will recognize the short – and long-term political fallout hidden payoffs could spark, and decide they simply can’t stomach it.
That, after all, is what finally brought Nixon down.
A dollar is a dollar [whenever, wherever]. 130,000 of them secretly funneled through a shell corporation and a sort-of lawyer to buy someone’s silence isn’t something that is common for “people of wealth.”
It is common for people with something to hide.