Donald Trump is trying to distance himself from former campaign chairman Paul Manafort as he testified before a federal judge on Friday. Just this morning, Trump said that Manafort “had nothing to do with our campaign” and added that “Paul Manafort worked with me for a very short period of time.” Trump said that Manafort “worked for me, what, for 49 days or something?” Wrong. Trump actually worked for Trump for 144 days, from March 29, 2016, to August 19, 2016, and even lived in Trump Tower. Manafort and Trump have done business together for years.
Sure, he was just a 69-year-old covfefe boy, just like all of his other associates who have been caught making nice with Russian oligarchs. Meanwhile, Trump’s longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen is about to flip and we’re sure the former reality show star will say he’s never heard of the guy.
Manafort was in court today to find out if he will have to await trial in prison or if he can remain on house arrest (with, not one, but two monitors attached to his ankles) following the allegations that he tried to obstruct the Russia inquiry. And that’s not even the worst of it since he is already facing federal charges of money laundering and fraud, and was charged last week, along with a Russian business associate, as part of an alleged scheme to tamper with two witnesses in special counsel Robert Mueller’s existing cases against Manafort.
While walking into court, Manafort was greeted with ‘Lock him up!’ chants.
Paul Manafort hurries into courthouse to sparse chants of “Lock him up!” pic.twitter.com/rG4PBSaXjS
— Evan McMurry (@evanmcmurry) June 15, 2018
The new charges allege that Manafort and Konstantin Kilimnik, who is linked to Russia’s intelligence service, tried to coach the testimony of the two unnamed witnesses. Manafort and Kilimnik are charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice and obstruction of justice. (I keep this bookmarked just for funsies.)
Manafort entered a plea of not guilty to the new superseding indictment. Judge Amy Berman Jackson heard arguments on whether Manafort can stay out of jail pending trial and he really doesn’t want to go to be locked up. Prosecutors argued that Manafort’s $10 million release bail should be revoked or tightened.
The judge ruled that Manafort will be jailed after being accused of witness tampering while awaiting trial on federal conspiracy and money-laundering charges. It’s not immediately when Manafort would be imprisoned or where.
Judge Amy Berman Jackson told Manafort that there wasn't a less restrictive action she could take: "This isn't middle school. I can’t take your phone."
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) June 15, 2018
Manafort, by the way, chose Mike Pence as Trump’s vice-president. I just thought I’d throw that in here.
Manafort is Manafucked.
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