Abbreviated pundit roundup: Michael Cohen names Sean Hannity as a client

Cristian Farias details what’s going on in the courtroom:

Because evidence of criminality between lawyer and client renders meaningless any claim of privilege between the two, it shouldn’t matter that it’s the nation’s chief executive trying to claim its protection. “The only thing that makes this case unusual is that one of the clients is the president,” said Thomas McKay, the assistant U.S. attorney sticking it to Cohen and Trump. To McKay, this case is just like any other white-collar investigation involving shady lawyers and clients, where courts have found that federal prosecutors may rummage through their private communications, using special procedures, if it is shown that the discussions were nothing but scheming and conspiring to break the law — no carve-outs for presidents. “If that is true,” McKay warned, “then that is true in every single case.” Which is to say, anyone who learns that their client’s office has been raided would be able to challenge the raid in federal court and drag out sensitive law enforcement investigations.

Neither Trump nor Cohen got away with it. Wood denied both of their motions to allow them, and not the prosecution, to screen the seized material for privileged content. “You’re not going to take away what the government has,” Wood declared.

Margaret Hartmann at New York looks at Hannity’s failure to disclose his relationship with Cohen:

If Sean Hannity were any other TV host, one might expect him to kick off his prime-time show by apologizing to viewers for failing to tell them that he was Michael Cohen’s client as he repeatedly denounced the investigation of Trump’s lawyer as as witch hunt. Instead, Hannity dismissed the idea that he should have said anything about his personal ties to Cohen, and criticized the “mainstream media” for its interest in the matter.

More on Hannity’s “ethical mess” from David Graham at The Atlantic:

[T]he ethical implications boggle the mind. Hannity has covered the raid on Cohen with vigor. Hannity said the raid was proof that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had “declared war” on Trump. […]

We now know, however, that his coverage represents a huge conflict of interest. By concealing—not just by omission, but by commission, in requesting that his involvement be kept anonymous—his relationship with Cohen when he made these comments, Hannity misled his viewers and listeners, whether that relationship was with an attorney or simply with a friend.

On a final note, here’s Kate Briquelet’s analysis at The Daily Beast of Keith Schiller’s role in this saga:

The other main fixture of Trump’s inner circle—one of the few who seems to know all the details about all the women and, like Cohen, is a person of interest to the investigators of the Russia inquiry—is Keith Schiller.

Schiller did not return messages left by The Daily Beast, and one of his attorneys declined to comment for this story.

“There is no doubt that Keith Schiller knows where all the bodies are buried. Next to Michael Cohen, if Mr. Schiller ever turns state’s evidence, the impact on the president would be catastrophic,” Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for Stormy Daniels, told The Daily Beast.

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