Key Hush-Money Trial Witness Throws Trump Under Bus As Hard as He Can

During his testimony in Donald Trump’s hush-money trial on Thursday, former tabloid magnate David Pecker wasted no time in blaming Trump completely for the whole scheme.

Pecker, ex-CEO of American Media Inc. and former publisher of the National Enquirer, is a key witness in the trial and returned to court in Manhattan for the third day to testify over charges that Trump illegally paid off adult film actress Stormy Daniels to cover up an affair before the 2016 election. Pecker, in a deal with the prosecution, has immunity and can give up details about his role in “catch-and-kill” schemes designed to protect Trump from negative coverage.

One question in court concerned a deal to pay Playboy model Karen McDougal, who also had an affair with Trump. Pecker told the court that Trump had direct knowledge of the payment contract, in addition to his then-fixer and attorney, Michael Cohen.


When asked by the prosecutor whether Trump wanted to keep negative stories hidden out of concern for his presidential campaign or in order to protect his family, Pecker replied simply: “I thought it was for the campaign.”

During Trump’s presidency, Pecker said he became worried after being contacted by the Federal Election Commission. Cohen tried to reassure Pecker that “Jeff Sessions is the attorney general and Donald Trump has him in his pocket.”. In earlier testimony, Pecker also described in detail how he broke campaign finance laws to help Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, explaining how he didn’t report the hush-money payments.

Trump is facing 34 felony charges for allegedly falsifying business records with the intent to further an underlying crime in his attempt to cover up an affair with adult film actress Stormy Daniels by paying her off. Daniels is expected to take the witness stand in the trial following Pecker.

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