Confused about the what, where and when of the Russian-Trump-Daniels-Cohen-Mueller connection? (Phew!) Well, look no further…
Despite their reluctance, Michael Cohen’s lawyers were forced to reveal that Fox News host and staunch Trump supporter Sean Hannity was Cohen’s mystery client.
The revelation made in a Manhattan federal courtroom on Monday not only caused audible gasps and laughter in the courtroom, but an Internet storm of epic proportions.
Holy cannoli https://t.co/dvo2G5eEmU
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) April 16, 2018
Sean hannity right now. pic.twitter.com/LnOIlklssd
— St. Petersburg Troll Farm (@Russian_trolls) April 16, 2018
Michael Cohen, a lawyer for President Donald Trump, is currently immersed in the Stormy Daniels case and in Muller’s inquiry into the Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Cohen allegedly potentially infringed Federal election laws when he paid $130,000 dollars to porn actress Stormy Daniels to silence her alleged affair with Trump in 2006.
If that wasn’t enough, Special Counsel Robert Mueller allegedly has evidence that Cohen travelled to Prague in 2016 to meet with a powerful Kremlin figure, supposedly to strategize the Russian meddling in the U.S. election.
This directly refutes Cohen’s previous claim that he never visited the Czech capital.
Yeah, as you can imagine the guy is in quite a pickle.
Seriously! I mean, my husband is going to benefit from this news tonight #ifyouknowwhatimean.
— Mission Accomplished (@AnneBeuhring) April 16, 2018
Merry lit-mad everybody!!! pic.twitter.com/vOnFBNgkW9
— 💉realfarmacist💊💎 (@real_farmacist) April 16, 2018
Since the FBI raided Cohen’s office and home last week seizing thousands of documents, analysts thought it was just a matter of time for juicy revelations to start popping out.
And surely, the name of the mystery client is a huge one.
Questions have been raised regarding the extent to which Cohen was actually working as a lawyer throughout the years spanning this legal mess.
Cohen’s attorneys stated he had three clients for whom his work was legal in nature. Two of them were previously known to the public – Trump, and Elliott Broidy, a major conservative party donor.
Broidy recently made headlines after he had to step down as deputy finance chairman of the Republican National Committee, immersed in a scandal with a Playboy Playmate whom he allegedly had impregnated.
Cohen arranged a $1.6 million payout with the adult performer in 2017.
Cohen’s lawyers wanted to keep the identity of this third client secret, alleging he was a public figure and they did not want to expose him. But judge Wood was having none of it and ordered the name to be revealed on Monday afternoon.
And it was none other than … wait for it … Sean Hannity.
Hannity poses as a journalist and he’s had Michael Cohen on his show without disclosing that Cohen is his lawyer. That is textbook conflict of interest. For example, when CNN does a report on Time Warner, they always say at the start of the piece that they’re owned by Time Warner
— Kristy Creighton (@kcpirana) April 16, 2018
— A Serious Boy (@PETEKEELEY) April 16, 2018
Hannity is a spearhead of conservative press and a close advisor to the president.
He’s known for slipping out some rather colourful remarks, like that time in 2009 when he offered to be waterboarded at a charity event to prove the practice was not torture.
In case you’re wondering, no, of course, he hasn’t delivered on that offer.
Hannity also recently started a cringeworthy Twitter tirade in which he compared one of Jimmy Kimmel’s comedy sketches with sexual assault.
When your clown makeup rubs off on Trump’s ass, does it make his butt look like a Creamsicle? https://t.co/DEhmfOh0Hn
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) April 6, 2018
The Fox News host has offered somewhat contradictory responses after being called out in the Cohen case.
In one statement, he claimed: “Michael Cohen has never represented me in any matter. I never retained him, received an invoice, or paid legal fees.” But in another one, on his radio show, he changed his version saying he “might have handed” Cohen $10 for legal advice.
Michael Cohen has never represented me in any matter. I never retained him, received an invoice, or paid legal fees. I have occasionally had brief discussions with him about legal questions about which I wanted his input and perspective.
— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) April 16, 2018
It’s obvious Hannity is shielding himself with his statement tweaking, seeking to establish an attorney-client privilege which the cheeky 10 buck claim. But I don’t really think that kind of legal humour will sit well with any judge.
So why is the revelation of Hannity as this third mystery man such a big deal? Well, the ethical implications are just insane.
Hannity is a political and personal ally of the Trump family. He has covered with vehemence the Cohen case, suggesting Special Counsel Robert Mueller is a biased official who has “declared war” on Trump.
“It is clear, as I have been warning, Mueller is out to get the president and it appears at any cost,” he said on Fox News. “Clearly, his objective is to remove him from office. Now, I told you and I’ve told anyone who will listen: Mueller’s team is corrupt, starting with him, and it has been from the beginning.”
Now, this has “conflict of interest” written all over it.
Hannity is a host of one of the most viewed news outlets in the US. By concealing his legal relationship with Cohen, he’s misleading viewers and listeners to his benefit.
And at the same time, Trump has held off on implementing the latest set of sanctions on Russia.
Is the puzzle clear enough yet?