Paul Manafort's Plea Deal ⚖️

 Brendan Smialowski / AFP / Getty Images

Brendan Smialowski / AFP / Getty Images

Trump isn't happy

On Friday, Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, plead guilty to two felonies, agreed to turn over several bank accounts and properties, and to cooperate with Mueller's Russia investigation. The felonies include one count of conspiracy against the US and one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice. 

Is this déjà vu?

This is the second of two trials for Paul Manafort. His first trial in Pennsylvania resulted in him being convicted on 8 out of 18 counts of tax and bank fraud. The latest trial in Washington D.C.  had 12 counts centered around allegations of money laundering and his unreported foreign lobbying work for the Ukrainian government.


LEANING LEFT:

Vox: Why Manafort’s plea deal should scare Trump, in 5 words

Slate: All the Ways Paul Manafort’s Guilty Plea Will Hurt Donald Trump

Left leaning outlets believe this plea deal makes a “bad day” for Trump. They assert that Manafort’s cooperation with Mueller may result in a “potentially catastrophic outcome” because of his communications with Russian oligarchs. The outlets concludes that the plea deal makes any potential presidential pardon have “no upside and plenty of downside” for Trump.

LEANING RIGHT:

Breitbart: Nolte: Manafort Deal Looks Like Good News for Trump, Terrible News for Democrats

Washington Times: Manafort pleads guilty, will cooperate with Mueller's team

Right leaning sources quote the White House stating that the plea deal is “totally unrelated” to the president. They point out that the Mueller investigation still has “exactly zippo” on Trump, despite all the aides who have decided to “cooperate” with Mueller. They believe that if the investigation had anything on Trump, the evidence would “have been leaked by now”. 


Where does this leave us?

The Manafort plea deal is Mueller’s largest and potentially most helpful deal. As both sides have noted, the value of the deal will ultimately be decided by what information Manafort brings to the investigation. 

Muller getting info out of Manafort

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