Trump: Dems ‘wrongly’ call a ‘simple private transaction’ a ‘campaign contribution'

President TrumpDonald John TrumpDem lawmaker says Electoral College was 'conceived' as way to perpetuate slavery Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitals to visit White House on Monday Transportation Dept requests formal audit of Boeing 737 Max certification MORE on Monday said Democrats are "wrongly" calling a "simple private transaction" a "campaign contribution," referring to payments made by his former attorney to two women who alleged affairs with the president more than a decade ago. 

In a pair of early morning tweets, Trump claimed that a payment by Michael Cohen was "done correctly," adding that he would not be liable if it was done incorrectly, and that Cohen was "just trying to get his sentence reduced." 

ADVERTISEMENT

Trump's tweets appeared to be prompted by comments by a Fox News host who said Democrats "can't find a smoking gun tying the Trump campaign to Russia." The president misspelled "smoking" as "smocking," something he first did in August.

Cohen in August pleaded guilty to bank and tax fraud and two counts of campaign finance law violations related to payments he made during the presidential campaign to adult-film star Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model. He said in his plea at the time that he violated campaign finance law at the direction of the candidate, a reference to Trump.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan last Friday filed documents that laid out allegations against Cohen, and stated that he violated campaign finance laws at the direction of "Individual-1," whose description matches Trump.

Trump claimed in a tweet shortly after the filing was made public that the filing "Totally clears the president." He did not provide additional context.

Democrats have seized on the filings, which came days after special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE filed court papers that laid out the extent of cooperation between prosecutors and former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn, and suggested the president may be in growing legal jeopardy.

“The president has now stepped into the same territory that ultimately led to President Nixon resigning the office. President Nixon was an unindicted co-conspirator, a — certainly a different set of facts,” Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyDems shift strategy for securing gun violence research funds The Hill's 12:30 Report: O'Rourke jumps into 2020 fray Overnight Defense: Senate breaks with Trump on Yemen war | Shanahan hit with ethics complaint over Boeing ties | Pentagon rolls out order to implement transgender ban | Dem chair throws cold water on Space Force budget MORE (D-Conn.) said Sunday on ABC.

"My takeaway is there's a very real prospect that on the day Donald Trump leaves office, the Justice Department may indict him. That he may be the first president in quite some time to face the real prospect of jail time," Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffDems request probe into spa owner suspected of trying to sell access to Trump Dems fear Trump is looking at presidential pardons The Hill's Morning Report — Trump readies first veto after latest clash with Senate GOP MORE (D-Calif.) said on CBS.