Did CNN Legal Analyst (and ex-Fed Prosecutor) Michael Zeldin Treat Manafort Accusations as Fact?
Michael Zeldin, who has worked very closely with special counsel Robert Mueller, spoke perhaps a bit more confidently than is typical of a legal analyst about the allegations against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.
CNN’s chief political analyst Gloria Borger read from former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates‘ statement agreeing to work with the special counsel, explaining that Gates is working with prosecution “to protect [his] family from further anguish and believe that ensuring their well-being is first and foremost.”
“It sets the stage, Michael, for potentially a lot of pressure on his boss… Paul Manafort, to do the same thing,” Borger said.
“Exactly. You now have a very large amount of paper and electronic evidence against Paul Manafort,” Zeldin replied. “Now you have a witness who can guide the jury, if you will, through all of that evidence to say, ‘I was there, I was on the inside, this is what we were doing, this is what this document means, this is what this computer file means.’ It makes it very difficult to overcome the prosecutor in a case like this.”
“Manafort was laundering tens of millions of dollars and Gates was laundering single figures, single millions of dollars in money,” Zeldin continued. “So there is a difference between the two, but they were both together in what is clearly a conspiracy to defraud the United States government.”
In saying so, Zeldin treated as fact the allegations against Manafort, and while there is a great deal of evidence against him, he – like everyone else – still needs to be proven guilty in a court of law, a reality of which Zeldin is no doubt aware.
Watch the full segment above, via CNN.
[image via screengrab]
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