On The Money: Manafort found guilty of tax, bank fraud | Trump says verdict has 'nothing' to do with collusion | Cohen pleads guilty on eight counts | Senators, Trump officials clash on Russia sanctions

On The Money: Manafort found guilty of tax, bank fraud | Trump says verdict has 'nothing' to do with collusion | Cohen pleads guilty on eight counts | Senators, Trump officials clash on Russia sanctions

Happy Tuesday and welcome back to On The Money. I'm Sylvan Lane, and here's your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL -- Manafort convicted and Cohen pleads guilty: Former Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortFormer White House lawyer sought to pay Manafort, Gates legal fees: report Mueller investigating Russian payments made by Trump Tower meeting organizers: report Cohen questioned for hours in Mueller probe about Trump's dealings with Russia: report MORE was found guilty in a Virginia courtroom on Tuesday of eight charges of bank and tax fraud.

The jury found Manafort guilty on five charges of filing false income tax returns, one count of failing to report foreign bank accounts and two counts of bank fraud.

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Judge T.S. Ellis III declared a mistrial on the remaining 10 counts -- three counts of failing to report foreign bank accounts, five counts of bank fraud conspiracy and two counts of bank fraud.

The scene in the courtroom: Manafort looked stunned after the verdict was read, but the courtroom was silent and still. He winked at his wife, Kathleen Manafort, as he was escorted out of the room after Ellis adjourned the proceedings.

Manafort's potential sentence: The one guilty count of failing to report foreign bank accounts carries a maximum of five years in prison and each count of bank fraud carries a maximum sentence of 30 years. He could face up to 80 years in prison.

The Hill's Lydia Wheeler tells us more here about the verdict and what comes next for Trump's former campaign chief.



Meanwhile... Manafort's conviction happened almost exactly when Trump's former attorney Michael Cohen pleaded guilty on Tuesday to charges of bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance law violations, delivering a potentially significant legal blow to the president.

Cohen pleaded guilty to eight counts total, including five counts of tax evasion and one count of making a false statement to a financial institution.

In pleading guilty to one count of making an excessive campaign contribution, Cohen said he did so at the direction of "a candidate for federal office." But he did not mention Trump by name.

Cohen's lawyer did mention the president by name. "Today he stood up and testified under oath that Donald Trump directed him to commit a crime by making payments to two women for the principal purpose of influencing an election," said Cohen's lawyer, Lanny Davis. "If those payments were a crime for Michael Cohen, then why wouldn't they be a crime for Donald Trump.

Trump's stance: Trump initially denied knowing anything about the payment to Daniels, but later acknowledged that he reimbursed Cohen for the expense, which he insisted had nothing to do with the campaign.

Brett Samuels has more here on what the Cohen plea means for the president.

 

How Trump reacted: The stories broke just as Trump was boarding Air Force One for a campaign rally in West Virginia. He didn't take questions from reporters on the tarmac. But after landing in West Virginia, Trump called Manafort a "good man" and said it was a "sad thing" he was convicted in federal court.

"This has nothing to do with Russian collusion. ... This is a witch hunt and it's a disgrace," he told reporters.

 

More Manafort, Cohen tidbits:

The Justice Department filing on Michael Cohen's guilty plea says he "coordinated with one or more members of the campaign, including through meetings and phone calls, about the fact, nature, and timing of the payments."

Cohen faced a "lock him up" chant after leaving the courthouse.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpHannity urges Trump not to fire 'anybody' after Rosenstein report Ben Carson appears to tie allegation against Kavanaugh to socialist plot Five takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke's fiery first debate MORE's attorney Rudy Giuliani said there were no allegations "of any wrongdoing" in the charges that Cohen pleaded guilty to. He also accused Cohen of spreading "lies and dishonesty."

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerTrump, GOP regain edge in Kavanaugh battle READ: President Trump’s exclusive interview with Hill.TV The Hill's 12:30 Report — Trump slams Sessions in exclusive Hill.TV interview | Kavanaugh accuser wants FBI investigation MORE (D-N.Y.) is warning Trump not to discuss Manafort, Cohen or pardons during his rally in West Virginia later tonight.

How bad was today for the president? The Drudge Report on its website characterized the Cohen, Manafort news as "Trump Hell Hour."

 

ON TAP TOMORROW

 

LEADING THE DAY

Warren proposes ban on lawmakers owning individual stocks: Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenMore Massachusetts Voters Prefer Deval Patrick for President than Elizabeth Warren Trump's trade war — firing all cannons or closing the portholes? Poll: Most Massachusetts voters don't think Warren should run for president in 2020 MORE (D-Mass.) on Tuesday outlined a new proposal to ban members of Congress from owning individual stocks, which comes as a GOP lawmaker has been indicted on insider trading charges.

Warren explained in a speech to the National Press Club that the bill would bar members of Congress, Cabinet-level officials, federal judges and other senior government officials from possessing and trading individual stocks.

"They can put their savings in conflict-free investments like mutual funds or they can pick a different line of work," said Warren, a potential 2020 White House contender.

Warren's bill also seeks to limit lobbyists' influence in Washington. It would ban foreign lobbying entirely and stop all lobbyists from donating to candidates and members of Congress. And members of Congress, former presidents and agency heads would be banned from lobbying for life.

The Hill's Megan Keller breaks it down here.

 

Senators, Trump officials clash over Russia sanctions: Senators were united in bipartisan frustration at a hearing Tuesday as Trump administration officials rebuffed several of their questions about the impact and implementation of Russian financial sanctions.

Members of the Senate Banking Committee criticized top officials at the Treasury, State and Homeland Security departments after they refused to explain how the administration would impose further penalties meant to derail Russia's economy.

The Trump officials highlighted the hundreds of Russian firms and individuals sanctioned since 2017 and cited statistical proof of the economic decline they caused through the penalties.

But senators have grown increasingly concerned about Putin's plans for the 2018 midterm elections amid mounting reports of Kremlin-backed hacking attempts. They are pressing the administration to do more. I'll tell you why here.

From the hearing:

 

GOOD TO KNOW

 

ODDS AND ENDS

  • President Trump's economic adviser Larry Kudlow last week hosted at his home the publisher of a website that runs content written by white nationalists, The Washington Post reported Tuesday.