Sunday, February 25, 2018

The Sleazy Actor Slush Fund (Cohen's the sleazy actor, not the porn star)

Late to the party but that's not new. The issue is Trump's attorney Michael Cohen claiming he paid porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 out of his own pocket without being reimbursed by the Trump Organization or the Trump campaign. Kevin Drum says:

OK, here’s my guess: Cohen paid Stormy; Kushner paid Cohen; Ivanka paid Kushner; Don Jr. paid Ivanka; and Don Jr.’s end-of-year bonus from The Trump Organization was $130,000 higher than last year thanks to his outstanding performance. You don’t believe me? Fine. Come up with a better theory.
Kevin's theory is closer to reality than he thinks, because I think I may have seen this game before in California politics. The game is played by sleazy political consultants who want to keep up the win ratios for a client for purposes of getting future business, but can't bill the client for the sleazy thing they'd like to do. So they use money they earned previously, that was previously placed in an entirely separate slush fund, to do whatever's needed. Long after that matter is concluded and the campaign is over, they go back and refill the slush fund with their own personal profits.

In reality the client is being billed, ultimately - the sleazy actor is very expensive because he wins a lot, so he can afford to replenish the revolving slush fund from profits as a kind of cost of doing business that doesn't quite show up on the accounting books.

I'm not guaranteeing this is right. Maybe it's something else in Cohen's case, as people point out he doesn't rule out being paid directly by Trump. This technique seems like an obvious possibility though and one I've guessed at previously.


David B Benson said...

Maybe he uses a printing press?

TransparencyCNP said...

"That attention to detail and the fact that the agreement was executed just 11 days before Election Day, at a time when Cohen would presumably have been very busy with his most important client, makes me wonder whether this document was created just for Daniels, or if it had been used by Cohen in the past. Hmm."

Henosis Sage said...

OMG Wabbit, the sky is falling!

"And then there were none."

Barton Paul Levenson said...

Henosis: OMG Wabbit, the sky is falling!

BPL: OMG Henosis, your IQ is falling! Even more, I mean.