|“Raiding lawyers’ offices isn’t unheard of—but is generally used for lawyers who work with alleged members of organized crime, or for lawyers who are involved themselves in elaborate criminal schemes.” The Daily Beast on the highly unusual and largely unexpected FBI raid on Michael Cohen that has everyone in Washington talking (and at least one, Tweeting). “It’s a tactic generally used against organized crime, against very serious, very serious criminals and lawyers who are operating outside of the protections of the law,” said Alan Dershowitz, a liberal attorney and frequent critic of Mueller’s tactics.
+ Rod Rosenstein personally signed off on the raid. Here’s the NYT on what the agents were looking for.The F.B.I. agents who raided the office of President Trump’s personal lawyer on Monday were looking for records about payments to two women who claim they had affairs with Mr. Trump as well as information related to the role of the publisher of The National Enquirer in silencing one of the women, according to several people briefed on the investigation.
The search warrant carried out by the public corruption unit of the United States attorney’s office in Manhattan sought information about Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model who claims she carried on a nearly yearlong affair with Mr. Trump shortly after the birth of his youngest son in 2006. Ms. McDougal was paid $150,000 by American Media Inc., The Enquirer’s parent company, whose chief executive is a friend of Mr. Trump’s.
+ The president argued once again that this is all part of a “witch hunt.” The fact that the feds greenlit a raid on a personal lawyer suggests exactly the opposite: “Whatever evidence federal prosecutors have collected concerning Michael Cohen, President Trump’s longtime attorney, it is most likely extraordinarily strong.” The Atlantic: Michael Cohen Has a Big Problem.
“These things are not anonymized, so you know you’re talking about Michael Cohen, the longtime attorney for the person who is now president of the United States, so you know you’re in very deep water,” John Q. Barrett, a former associate special counsel in the Iran-Contra affair and a law professor at St. Johns, said. “Any law-enforcement official would proceed very carefully.”
+ The president also tweeted that “Attorney-client privilege is dead!” The truth is that it may not apply here. “If a client is using a lawyer’s services for the purpose of engaging in crime or fraud, there is no privilege.”
“The attorney general made a terrible mistake when he did this and when recused himself or he certainly should have let us know if he was going to recuse himself and we would have put a different attorney general in,” Trump said Monday, reprising previous comments about Sessions. “So he made what I consider to be a very terrible mistake for the country. But you’ll figure that out.”
+ Surround by military leaders and with his armed crossed, the president explained that the raid on Cohen is “an attack on our country, in a true sense. It’s an attack on what we all stand for.” David Graham on Trump’s assault on the rule of law.
+ WaPo: Trump’s tirade after the Michael Cohen raid, annotated.President Trump’s full remarks on April 9 after FBI agents raided the office of Michael Cohen, his personal attorney.