Alan Dershowitz: Michael Cohen falsely conflates ‘wrong’ and ‘illegal’ while bashing Trump

Legal icon Alan Dershowitz says the latest version attorney Michael Cohen — the one who says his lying days are behind him — is obfuscating when it comes to President Trump. Mr. Cohen gave an interview to ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on Friday regarding the now-infamous hush money to porn actress Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal, but Mr. Dershowitz was not impressed. The Harvard Law School professor emeritus told Fox and Friends that a word like “wrong” in this case is erroneously being used as a synonym for “illegal.” “Reasonable people can disagree about whether it’s wrong to pay hush money to somebody to stop them from disclosing alleged improprieties sexually. Reasonable people can say that’s wrong or that’s right,” Mr. Dershowitz said. “It’s not illegal.” Mr. Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison this week for various crimes, including campaign-finance violations. “It’s sad that I should take responsibility for [Trump’s] dirty deeds,” Mr. Cohen said. “I will not be the villain, as I told you once before. I will not be the villain of his story. … I knew what I was doing was wrong. I stood up before the world yesterday and I accepted responsibility for my actions.” Mr. Dershowitz countered that Mr. Cohen is conflating moral questions regarding allegations of marital infidelity with an incorrect reading of campaign-finance laws. “If a presidential candidate took cash and went to one of these women and said, ‘I’m paying you not to disclose what happened and I’m doing it in order to help myself be elected president,’ that would not be a crime,” Mr. Dershowitz said. “A president is entitled to make campaign contributions to his own campaign. The only issue is if he did it at all, did he do it properly. To the extent that he authorized Cohen, that makes them payments by the president, which makes them legal.” “Whether you think it’s wrong or right, I don’t understand the case for how it’s illegal. If you look at the very, very complicated campaign laws, the one thing that comes out simply is that a candidate may himself or herself contribute as much as they want to a campaign,” he added.

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