FEC drops Trump hush-money probe despite Cohen confession

The Trump Timeline

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The Federal Elections Commission decides to drop its probe of the 2016 hush-money payment to Stormy Daniels, which violated campaign finance laws.

In 2016, Michael Cohen arranged a $130,000 payment to Daniels, with Donald Trump’s explicit approval. In return, Daniels remained silent about her affair with Trump and saved his campaign from a potentially devastating story.

Cohen pleaded guilty to breaking campaign finance laws and other charges in 2018, the same year that Trump admitted to knowing about the payment.

The commission is made up of three Democrats and three Republicans. They were split down the middle on how to proceed.

two Republican commissioners, Sean Cooksey and Trey Trainor, said they voted to dismiss the case because it was “statute-of-limitations imperiled” and that pursuing it further would be a poor use of agency resources. They argued that because there had been other federal inquiries into the incident — namely the Justice Department probe that led to Cohen’s prosecution — an FEC case would be redundant.

The Washington Post

Michael Cohen responds to the news, reiterating his previous statements.

The Justice Department has until October to launch an investigation into Trump’s involvement in the crime, but such an investigation is unlikely.

External Sources

The Washington Post (Archived)

The Hill (Archived)

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Photo: Gage Skidmore

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