Tag Archives: Michael Cohen

OA260: Res Ipsa Loquitur

Today’s episode is inspired by a law student listener question about a recent Thomas Takes The Bar Exam hypothetical, and takes a deep dive into the wonderful and wacky world of res ipsa loquitur.   What does that even mean?  You’ll have to listen and find out!

We begin with a brief Andrew Was Wrong segment about Donald Trump and drone use, followed up by an Andrew Was Right segment about multiple states suing to block the implementation of Trump’s HHS regulations relating to Title X that we discussed in Episode 258.

Then it’s time for that deep dive into res ipsa loquitur that you didn’t know you wanted until now!

After all that, it’s time for some Bonus Tuesday Yodeling, in which we check in on Roger Stone’s “Motion to Clarify” that was denied by Judge Jackson and an update on the House Republicans’ hilariously misguided efforts to try and discredit Michael Cohen by pointing out that he sure seems to like to lie on behalf of his client.  You won’t want to miss it!

Then, it’s time for the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #117.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
None!  If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Here’s a link to the Daily Beast article about Trump and drone strikes we teased in the opening segment.
  2. We’ve uploaded both Title X complaints:  the one filed by California as well as the multistate complaint.
  3. More on Title X:  click here for the actual law (42 U.S.C. § 300 et seq.); click here for the accompanying regulations (42 C.F.R. Part 59), and click here to read the new final rule promulgated by HHS regarding Title X.  And, of course, you can click here to read Rep. Cummings’s letter regarding the rule.
  4. This is Rep. Jordan’s “own goal” letter.
  5. Finally, here’s Judge Jackson’s Order regarding Roger Stone.

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OA259: Your Guide to the Congressional Investigations

Today’s extra-long episode contains your guide to the Congressional Investigations, and specifically the 81 document requests sent out by Rep. Jerry Nadler to various Trump-related individuals and entities in connection with the Democratic Congress’s larger investigation into corruption, ties with Russia, and general criminal behavior by the administration.  What does it all mean?  Who are the key players?  Listen and find out!

We begin, however, with a brief Andrew Was Right — Michael Cohen is producing drafts of his Congressional testimony, which may support his claim that Trump’s personal lawyer, Jay “ACLJ” Sekulow edited his testimony to suborn perjury.

Then, it’s time for an in-depth look at the various documents requested by Rep. Nadler.  What does it all mean?  We break down the four major “buckets” of inquiries and tell you about some familiar faces… and some surprising new ones.

After that, it’s time to take a look into recent developments in the Jeffrey Epstein case and correct some reporting as to whether his non-prosecution agreement has really been torn up by the courts.  (It hasn’t.)

We end, as always, with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #117 about the use of university space for a debate on affirmative action.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
Andrew was just a guest host on Episode 91 of the Skepticrat; go check it out!  And if you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

1. Cohen to produce drafts of his testimony to Congress.
2. Congressional Investigations 162 documents served on 81 different people. Documents here:
3. Here’s a handy guide to who’s who in the investigation.
4. Here’s Hope Hicks’s documents request.
5. Here’s our tweet out to Rep. Nadler regarding Nader’s document requests:
6. Epstein. This is the text of the Crime Victims’ Rights Act of 2004, 18 U.S.C. § 3771.
7. Judge Marra’s ruling can be found here.

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For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA257.5 Michael Cohen Testifies, Part 2

Today’s episode continues our breakdown of ex-Trump fixer Michael Cohen’s testimony before the House of Representatives and all the Yodel Mountain implications that stem from it that we started in Episode 257.  What’s next?  Listen and find out!

We begin where we left off — with Michael Cohen.  Find out how Cohen’s testimony (and documents) implicate our favorite legal genius, Stormy Daniels!

After that, it’s time to check in on Roger Stone’s former flunky, Andrew Miller, and his quixotic quest to undo the Mueller investigation.  That effort was just slapped down by the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, and we’ve got the full opinion covered for you.

Then, it’s time to check in on an odd development in the sentencing saga of Paul Manafort.  What does the government’s latest (redacted) filing portend?  We’re not entirely sure… but we want you to know what we know.

And then — after all that! — we  end with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #116 regarding a rather odd traffic accident.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
Andrew was just a guest on HBO’s Vice News!  And if you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links
1. Here are the documents Michael Cohen brought to Congress.
2. Marcy Wheeler’s article: How Trump Suborns Perjury.
3. DC Circuit’s opinion in Andrew Miller’s In Re: Grand Jury appeal.
4. Court’s sua sponte order.
5. Government’s sentencing memo in Manafort’s DC trial.
6. Manafort’s response memo.
7. Government’s Supplemental heavily redacted memo.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA257: Michael Cohen Testifies, Part 1

Today’s episode breaks down ex-Trump fixer Michael Cohen’s testimony before the House of Representatives and all the Yodel Mountain implications that stem from it.  What’s next?  Listen and find out!

We begin, however, with an update on the American Legion v. American Humanist Association case where Andrew recently spoke at the AHA’s #HonorThemAll rally.

After that, it’s time to find out about Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz who attempted to intimidate Michael Cohen and… may have gotten into some legal trouble thanks to this show and it’s listeners!

Then, we begin breaking down the Cohen testimony… but there’s so much here to cover, we decided to  keep going for yet another hour, and you’ll get that tomorrow!

For the first time, we don’t end with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question, but you’ll get #116 tomorrow.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
None!  And if you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links
1.18 U.S.C. § 1512  Tampering with a witness, victim, or an informant. (B) governs witness tampering
2. Gaetz timeline from The Washington Post
3. Florida Bar Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 4-8.4(d) “prohibits a lawyer from engaging in conduct that is prejudicial to the
administration of justice.”
4. Isaac Dovere at the Atlantic tweeting about Gaetz
5. Cohen is subject to 18 U.S.C. § 1001: Statements or entries generally (a)(2) “makes any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation; or”
6. 18 U.S.C. § 1622  Subornation of perjury
7. Marcy Wheeler’s article: How Trump Suborns Perjury
8. Here are the documents Michael Cohen brought to Congress
9. Kansas potential emoluments violation

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA246: Alex Jones & Sandy Hook

Today’s episode features a deep dive into the latest developments in the lawsuit brought by parents of the victims in the Sandy Hook Massacre against Alex Jones and Infowars for repeatedly portraying the school shooting as a hoax.

We begin, however, with a question regarding our views of the 2016 Presidential Election from a Trump supporter who’s hate-funding us.  Hey, we’re good to our word!

After that, it’s time to dig in to the defamation lawsuit against Alex Jones.  We tackle the minutiae — standing, jurisdiction, statute of limitations — and the big issues as well.  If you want to know where defamation law is headed in this era of “fake news,” well, this is the show for you!

Then, it’s time for a quick visit to Yodel Mountain to check in on Rudy Giuliani and Michael Cohen.  Because of course it is.

Finally, it’s time for the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #110, which involved a dentist being sued for malpractice and product liability. As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances

Andrew was just a guest on Episode 138 of the Naked Mormonism podcast.  Give it a listen!  And if you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

1. NYT articles on using third-party votes to hack elections.
The Secret Social Media Experiment in Alabama Senate Race Imitated Russian Tactics and how the Democrats Faked Online Push to Outlaw Alcohol in Alabama Race.
2. Politico story on the Justice Democrats plans to mount primaries against incumbent Democrats it deems too moderate with the apparent backing of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
3: NYT on Alex Jones and Sandy Hook
4. Media Matters 7 minute, 13 second compilation on Alex Jones about Sandy Hook.
5. Media Matters timeline of Jones promoting conspiracy theories about Sandy Hook.
6. Yodel Mountain: Rudy Giuliani is not helping!
7. WSJ on Cohen and poll-rigging and Cohen’s response on the story: “As for the @WSJ article on poll rigging, what I did was at the direction of and for the sole benefit of @realDonaldTrump @POTUS. I truly regret my blind loyalty to a man who doesn’t deserve it.”
8. The GLORIOUS “Women for Cohen” Twitter account: Because some things on twitter make you ask, “Why?”.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA239: The Fourth Circuit’s Puzzling Emoluments Ruling

Today’s episode takes a deep dive into the just-released one-page order by the Fourth Circuit staying all discovery in the Emoluments litigation brought by Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh.  How do we fill more than an hour’s worth of time on one page?  Why is this ruling really, really bad for everyone??  Listen and find out!

We begin, however, with a brief foray up Yodel Mountain to discuss (1) the reports circulating that Michael Cohen’s phone was in Prague in the summer of 2016, and (2) the ethics review of “Acting” Attorney General Matthew Whitaker concerning the Mueller probe.

After that, it’s time for a deep dive into the Emoluments litigation, the strange procedural posture of Trump’s response, and what this means for civil litigation generally (and this case in particular).  You won’t want to miss it!

Then we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #107 on defamation.  As always, if you’d like to play along with us, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess and the #TTTBE hashtag.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Appearances

None!  If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Click here to read the Whitaker ethics review letter, and here to read the Steele dossier.
  2. We last discussed the Emoluments litigation in Episode 226.
  3. You can check out all of these documents:  the Fourth Circuit’s order, the motion to stay, and the opposition filed by Frosh.
  4. Trump’s argument is based on 28 USC § 1292(b) and relies on Fernandez-Roque v. Smith, 671 F.2d 426 (11th Cir. 1982).

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

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OA235: Corporations Are People, My Friend… Criminal People

Today’s Rapid Response episode takes a look at three breaking stories related to the White House:  (1) the recent ruling requiring Stormy Daniels to pay Trump’s attorneys’ fees; (2) the sentencing of Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen; and (3) most importantly, the plea deal signed by American Media, Inc. — parent company to the National Enquirer — to cooperate with the Special Counsel’s Office.

We begin by revisiting the question of whether, in fact, Stormy Daniels is still a legal genius.  (Hint:  she is.)  But what does it mean that a court just ordered her to pay Trump nearly $300,000 — and why could it have been much, much worse?  Listen and find out.

After that, we check out Trump’s ex-“fixer” and the former Taxi King of New York, Michael Cohen, who was just sentenced to three years in prison.

Then it’s time for a fascinating look into a non-prosecution agreement reached between the Special Counsel’s Office and American Media, Inc. that tell us an awful lot about where Yodel Mountain is headed.

Finally, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #105 on modifications to a contract.  As always, if you’d like to play along with us, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess and the #TTTBE hashtag.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Appearances

None!  If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Here’s the merits ruling defamation we referenced during the show; you can also check out Trump’s motion for attorneys’ fees, Avenatti’s (rather weak) opposition brief, and the court’s ruling directing Stormy to pay almost $300,000.
  2. And because it never ends, check out the mediation questionnaire filled out by Avenatti for their appeal to the 9th Circuit.
  3. You know you want to read the press release regarding Michael Cohen’s sentence; after that, you can check out the sentencing memoranda filed by the SCO’s office (“good cop”) as well as the brief filed by the SDNY (“bad cop”).
  4. Finally, this is the AMI agreeement as well as the DOJ guidelines on prosecuting corporations.
  5. Oh, and just for fun, here’s Jose Canseco’s audition to be Trump’s Chief of Staff.  #YesWeCanseco

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

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And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA231: The End of the Beginning (for Trump)

“Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” – Winston Churchill.  And yes, today does, in fact, mark the end of the beginning of the Mueller Investigation… and perhaps for Donald Trump.  Why?  You’ll just have to listen and find out!

In this super-sized episode, we tackle:

(1) Michael Cohen’s just-announced plea to a new count of lying — this time in connection with his prior testimony before the Senate and House Intelligence Committees investigating Russian interference in the 2016 elections;

(2) A follow-up on Andrew Miller and Concord Management and Consulting, including a fascinating new blog written by Randall Eliason with Yodel Mountain implications;

(3) Paul Manafort’s apparent repudiation of his plea deal with Mueller, what that means and when we’ll know;

(4) Jerome Corsi’s public refusal to plead and cooperate with the Mueller investigation over WikiLeaks and Julian Assange; and

(5) An update in the Brain Frosh

Finally, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #103 on a property owner who has the rug pulled out from under him due to a new law.   If you’d like to play along with us, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess and the #TTTBE hashtag.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Appearances

None!  If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Click here to read the new Information to which Cohen pled guilty to today.
  2. This is the BuzzFeed article on Cohen, Felix Sater, and Trump’s efforts to get a building in Moscow over the past 30 years.  Oh, and here’s a link to Trump’s tweet that he has “ZERO INVESTMENTS IN RUSSIA.
  3. We discussed the Andrew Miller lawsuit in OA 229; you’ll definitely want to read the two new filings: Silbey’s supplemental amicus “letter”, and Christenson’s… something.
  4. You’ll definitely want to check out Randall Eliason’s blog analyzing the Concord Management and Consulting lawsuit and what it means for 18 U.S.C. § 371 conspiracy charges (of the sort that might be filed against Trump).
  5. Here’s Manafort’s original plea deal, and this is the Joint Status Report filed earlier this week. Oh, and this is Manafort’s waiver of his right to appear at the scheduling conference.
  6. This is the Marcy Wheeler article we broke down; for the other side, here’s the Wall Street Journal report suggesting Manafort lied about non-Trump-related personal business dealings.
  7. This is the Guardian article connecting Manafort to Julian Assange and WikiLeaks; here is the fantastic Washington Post article and timeline on what that means if true.
  8. Here’s Corsi’s draft deal with Manafort that he rejected.
  9. Finally, we discussed the Brian Frosh lawsuit against Matthew Whitaker in Episode 227; you can now read the amicus brief filed by 15 state attorneys general.  Phew!

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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OA204: The Perjury Trap (w/guest Randall Eliason)

Today’s episode welcomes back one of our favorite guest experts, former prosecutor and current law professor Randall Eliason of the Sidebars blog, who will help us break down what exactly a “perjury trap” is — and whether Robert Mueller is laying one for the President.

Of course, when we have a guest this good, we also have to take advantage of his expertise in a couple of other areas.  So we begin by checking in on the news of the day:  Mueller has already reportedly offered immunity to David Pecker, the CEO of the National Inquirer, whom we discussed at great length on Episode 203 in connection with the Cohen plea.

After that, we delve into Rudy Giuliani’s contention that Mueller is laying a “perjury trap” for the President.  Is that a thing?  Is that what he’s doing?  Listen and find out!

After that, we revisit the issue of reporters and confidential sources, where Professor Eliason has been a consistent voice opposing a federal privilege.  Is that a view he still holds?  There’s only one way to know for sure!

Finally, it’s time for the answer to Thomas Takes the Bar Exam, where our intrepid hero tries to inch closer to the coveted 60% mark with a question about torts.  Remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Recent Appearances

None! If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Prof. Eliason first guested on the show way back in Episode 70.
  2. Here is the link to the NPR interview with Prof. Eliason discussed on the show.
  3. To read more of Prof. Eliason’s work, click here to visit the Sidebars blog.
  4. Here is a transcript of Prof. Eliason’s statement on reporter’s privilege in the age of Trump.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA203: Paul Manafort Convicted, Michael Cohen Pleads

Today’s extra-long, extra-early Rapid Response episode tackles the two biggest stories in the news right now:  Paul Manafort’s conviction, and Michael Cohen’s plea deal.  We tell you exactly what these two big stories actually mean.

We begin with Paul Manafort.  What did the jury decide?  Why did they fail to reach a verdict on 10 counts?  What were those counts?  How long is Paulie M going to stay in prison and what’s next?  And, most importantly:  what does this mean for Yodel Mountain?  How likely is Paulie M to flip on Donald Trump?  We answer all of these questions and more!

After that, we turn to everyone’s favorite weasel, Michael “I Would Take A Bullet For Donald Trump” Cohen, who… has not taken a bullet for Donald Trump but has in fact pled guilty to eight separate crimes.  What are they, what does it mean, and what comes next?  Listen and find out!

And if all that wasn’t enough, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #90 involving  foreseeability, cross-motions for summary judgment, and tortious conduct.  If you’d like to play along, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess and the #TTTBE hashtag.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent Appearances

None!  If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. You’ll want to start with the Manafort indictment, and you can also read the Manafort verdict.  Of the eight guilty counts, Manafort was convicted under 18 U.S.C. § 134426 U.S.C. § 7206(1), and 31 U.S.C. § 5322.
  2. We first discussed the Federal Sentencing Guidelines back in Episode 162; you can check out the full manual (long!) and also the FSG Sentencing table to figure out how long Paulie M is going away.
  3. And don’t forget Manafort still has another trial pending in DC!  We gave you a primer on that back in Episode 194, and you can check out the pending indictment in that case.
  4. If Paulie M flips, it will be to take advantage of Rule 35(b) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure.
  5. Of course, we first covered how Stormy Daniels is a Legal Genius back in Episode 154, and then the Karen McDougal story in Episode 158.
  6. Here’s Cohen’s plea deal; here are the conditions of his release; and here’s the article quoting his allocution.
  7. Sneak preview of the bonus episode:  here’s the DOJ manual on prosecuting campaign finance violations that proves Alan Dershowitz is lying.  Again.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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