How big of a deal is Allen Weisselberg's immunity deal in Michael Cohen case?

Longtime Trump Organization CFO set to testify in Michael Cohen case after being granted immunity

Published August 24, 2018 3:39PM (EDT)

 (Getty/Spencer Platt)
(Getty/Spencer Platt)

Allen Weisselberg, the chief financial officer of the Trump Organization and a longtime associate of President Donald Trump, may very well be prepared to flip on the president.

Weisselberg has long been at the center of concerns over whether the president misused campaign funds to cover up alleged affairs with former porn star Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal. Earlier this year, Weisselberg was called to testify before a federal grand jury, The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday. Although it is unknown whether Weisselberg actually appeared before a federal grand jury, he did wind up speaking to investigators.

Now that Weisselberg has been granted immunity, it seems likely that he will be asked to provide information about criminal wrongdoing from either Trump himself or Trump's business associates. Weisselberg is in a position to know a lot of dirt about the president; not only has he spent years at high levels of Trump's business empire, but after taking office the president gave him joint control of his financial assets and business interests, which Weisselberg shares with the president's two sons, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump.

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Weisselberg isn't the only close friend of the president to flip on him this week.

Michael Cohen, who used to work as the president's lawyer and personal fixer, has also recently flipped on Trump, prompting the president to opine on Fox News earlier this week that flipping "almost ought to be illegal."

IT was also reported this week that the president recently lost the support of longtime friend David Pecker, the head of American Media Inc., which owns the supermarket tabloid the National Enquirer. Like Weisselberg, Pecker has been granted immunity by the Mueller probe, and also like Weisselberg he is in a position to know a considerable amount of dirt about the president. It has been widely reported that the National Enquirer engaged in a journalistic practice known as catch-and-kill on the president's behalf, one in which they found unflattering stories about the president and purchased exclusive rights so that they could then sit on them. It is believed that they did this in order to stop Daniels and McDougal from publicly revealing their alleged affairs with the then-candidate at a time when it could have compromised his reelection chances.

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By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a professional writer whose work has appeared in multiple national media outlets since 2012 and exclusively at Salon since 2016. He specializes in covering science and history, and is particularly passionate about climate change, animal science, disability rights, plastic pollution and a wide range of political issues. He has interviewed many prominent figures (reflecting his diverse interests) including President Jimmy Carter (1977-1981), Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak (1999-2001), animal scientist and autism activist Temple Grandin, inventor Ernő Rubik, epidemiologist Monica Gandhi, theoretical cosmologist Janna Levin, mRNA vaccine pioneer Katalin Karikó, philosopher of science Vinciane Despret, actor George Takei ("Star Trek"), Democratic vice presidential nominee Joe Lieberman (2000), Ambassador Michael McFaul (2012-2014), economist Richard Wolff, director Kevin Greutert ("Saw VI"), model Liskula Cohen, actor Rodger Bumpass ("SpongeBob Squarepants"), Senator John Hickenlooper (2021-present), American Public Health Association Executive Director Georges Benjamin (2002-present), comedian Bill Burr ("F Is for Family"), novelist James Patterson ("The President's Daughter"), comedian David Cross ("Scary Movie 2") and right-wing insurrectionist Roger Stone.

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Allen Weisselberg Donald Trump Karen Mcdougal Michael Cohen Robert Mueller Stormy Daniels