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“HOW DID WE GO FROM RUSSIA COLLUSION TO THIS?”
by Sharon Rondeau
(Aug. 21, 2018) — On Tuesday night’s “Hannity,” host Sean Hannity reviewed the headlines of the day which included a guilty plea by former Trump personal attorney Michael Cohen and convictions on eight counts on various crimes against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.
During the opening minutes of his opening monologue, Hannity stressed that the indictments against both men are unrelated to the alleged reason for the hiring of former FBI Director Robert Mueller to act as “Special Counsel”: Russia “collusion” on the part of Trump and/or his campaign aides.
Trump has insisted that no one on his campaign “colluded” with Russia in order to tip the election in his favor. His administration has pointed to actions it has taken against the Russian Federation for its alleged tampering with the 2016 election.
Cohen agreed on Tuesday to plead “guilty” to various charges, including violating campaign-finance laws and tax fraud.
“How did we go from Russia ‘collusion’ to this?” Hannity asked his audience rhetorically, positing that “If you’re a Democrat and you have subpoenaed information, you can mishandle classified information…” The statement was a reference to Hillary Clinton, who used an unauthorized email server while she acted as secretary of state under Barack Obama.
It is undisputed that Clinton sent classified information over the server and that it was compromised by foreign actors.
Hannity reiterated that he believes the U.S. has a “two-tiered justice system” which allows certain individuals to escape scrutiny while others who happen to be “associated with Trump” are “going to prison.”
He opined that the “Deep State” is working to remove Donald Trump from office.
At 9:16 p.m. EDT, guest and former U.S. Attorney Andrew McCarthy said that he does not believe Mueller is investigating Russian “interference” in the 2016 election, with which he was also initially tasked. He added that in his view, “Mueller didn’t see Cohen as somebody who was going to advance his Russia investigation” and therefore turned his findings over to the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York for prosecution.
“I don’t think they regard him as a witness,” McCarthy said, invoking media reports that Cohen will not be “cooperating” with federal investigators.
The U.S. Attorney reportedly said that the “rule of law” must be applied to all Americans equally.
Neither Cohen nor Manafort’s charges claim that they “colluded” with Russian operatives in connection with the election. However, Cohen’s attorney, longtime Democrat operative and Clinton supporter Lanny Davis, said that his client will be revealing information about Trump’s wrongdoing, according to Fox News.
“We don’t have a constitutional republic,” Hannity said at 9:26 p.m. to guest and Fox News Legal Analyst Gregg Jarrett.
The topic turned to the Russia “dossier” provided by British citizen Christopher Steele, which investigative reporter Sara A. Carter said constituted “collusion” given that Steele had connections to DOJ attorney Bruce Ohr, who funneled the dossier’s information to the FBI. “There needs to be a special counsel, according to a number of sources I’ve spoken with,” Carter said of those recently-revealed developments.
Jarrett opined that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is “covering up” his own misconduct and position as a witness to the actions of FBI and DOJ personnel during the 2016 election which targeted Trump but allowed Clinton to escape criminal charges for her mishandling of classified information.
Jarrett opined, as he has in the past, that the Special Counsel “is illegitimate” because there is no “stated crime” for him to investigate.
At 9:38 p.m., guest and attorney Mark Levin said that Davis had his client plead “guilty” to two campaign violations that “do not exist.” Levin took issue with the prosecutor’s charges in that regard. “A campaign expenditure…is an expenditure solely for campaign purposes,” he said.
“It’s not a crime,” Levin said of the expenditures Cohen reportedly paid on Trump’s behalf to two women claiming to have had affairs with Trump, which Trump denies.
Levin said that paying “hush money” to silence a potentially damaging voice before an election is “perfectly legal.” “Lanny Davis blew it,” he asserted at 9:43 p.m.
He said that because of corruption within the DOJ associated with the Trump dossier, “we need a special counsel now.”