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CNN Analyst Shocked By Stormy Daniels’ Admission About Trump

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


CNN legal analyst Elie Honig called it a disaster that Stormy Daniels, an adult film actress key witness in former President Donald Trump’s hush money trial, was cross-examined after her testimony against him.

Although Honig found Daniels’ testimony about a 2006 sexual encounter with Trump in a hotel room “plausible,” he said last week that her responses during Trump’s team’s cross-examination raised doubts about her reliability.

“So it‘s interesting because I was doing our live coverage, following along with our minute-by-minute updates from inside the courtroom, and I had the exact opposite impression. Now, you had the benefit of being in the courtroom, so I will defer to that, but we do also have to be careful when we play sort of amateur psychologists to the jurors’ movements, right?” Honig began.

“They were leaning forward. They were taking notes. Okay. They could be taking notes because they think this is a great point, or they could be taking notes because they think, ‘This makes no sense, and I don‘t believe it.’ So, let‘s just all be cautious when reading into the jurors’ physicality. My impression was she was plausible in her explanation of what happened in that hotel room. It‘s hard for me to believe that a juror heard that and thought this is entirely made up,” he said.

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“There may well be some embellishments, which Arthur, I think, pointed out effectively in the last hour, but I think it‘s quite clear they had sex in 2006 in that hotel room. But the cross-exam, boy, her responses were disastrous. I mean, do you hate Donald Trump? Yes, of course, she does. That‘s a big deal. When the witness hates the person who‘s liberty is at stake, that‘s a big damn deal. And she‘s putting out tweets, fantasizing about him being in jail. That really undermines the credibility,” he added.

Honig continued: “The fact that she owes him $500,000, she, by order of a court, owes Donald Trump a half million dollars and said, ‘I will never pay him, I will defy a court order,’ the defense is going to say, ‘She‘s willing to defy a court order. She‘s not willing to respect an order of a judge. Why is she going to respect this oath she took?’ So, I thought it went quite poorly on the cross-exam. At the end of direct, I thought, ‘Okay, they got what they needed,’ but I think the cross is making real inroads.’”

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Also, last week, Trump attorney and spokeswoman Alina Habba ripped the hypocritical nature of the prosecution against her boss that is evident in his trial, even to the point where attorney-client privilege doesn’t appear to matter.

Habba was discussing the testimony of Trump’s former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, who admitted to secretly recording a conversation with his then-boss about an alleged hush money payment. These discussions between attorneys and their clients are supposed to be privileged and private, but Cohen’s testimony in court has not yet been challenged.

Habba, in an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity, noted the discrepancy.

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“Last time I checked, there’s something called attorney-client privilege. Obviously, you know, that doesn’t stand if you’re going against Donald Trump because none of the rules stand if you’re going against Donald Trump in a political campaign where he is winning and they have no other way to win but to take him down with illegal and politically motivated lawfare,” Habba told the host.

“You said it best, Sean. Hillary Clinton did something far worse, and the [Federal Election Commission] looked at it, they examined it, and what did they do? They gave her a slap on the wrist, she paid, I think, eight grand for hiding the dirty dossier, the Russian hoax against Donald Trump, and nobody cared about anything,” Habba continued.

“She wasn’t dragged into court. Neither was Bill Clinton in the sock drawer case, and the list goes on and on and on. But if you are Donald Trump, you’re going to be gagged unconstitutionally so that you can’t even discuss testimony of people that are calling you a liar, and you can’t defend yourself,” she said.

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