Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

TNY Trump Hounds

The New Yorker unveiled its latest cover on Friday morning. (Image: New York Cover Detail/Barry Blitt)

Hounds 'Closing In' and 'Dam Breaking' as Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg Latest to Get Immunity for Testimony

"If all his people are put under pressure and tell the secrets they know, it's terrible for him. There's a real sense that the criminal justice system is biting back [against the president]."

Jessica Corbett

Offering the latest evidence that the walls are closing in on President Donald Trump, federal prosecuters reportedly have granted immunity to Trump Organization chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg for providing information about the president's longtime personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, who pleaded guilty this week to violating campaign finance laws at Trump's direction, to pay off two women who say they had affairs with Trump.

Following previous reports that Weisselberg had testified before a grand jury earlier this year, the Wall Street Journal broke the immunity revelation on Friday. Describing Weisselberg as "Trump's longtime financial gatekeeper," the Journal noted that he has been an executive at the Trump Organization for decades, and "after Mr. Trump was elected, he handed control of his financial assets and business interests to his two adult sons and Mr. Weisselberg."

In the immediate wake of the news, legal analyst Harry Litman, a former U.S. attorney, told MSNBC there is now "a sense that the dam is breaking over the last week and people are rushing in from all sides."

According to Litman, "Everybody's who around Trump now—and has been over the last ten years intimately—is in a world of hurt with legal battles on all sides."

News of Weisselberg's immunity deal followed reporting on Thursday that David Pecker and Dylan Howard, two top executives at American Media Inc. (AMI), publisher of the tabloid The National Enquirer, were also granted immunity for sharing information with prosecutors about the hush-money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

"Pecker's apparent decision to corroborate Cohen's account, and implicate Trump in a federal crime, is another vivid example of how isolated Trump is becoming," wrote Vanity Fair's Gabriel Sherman, who broke the AMI story. On Tuesday—the same day as Cohen's plea—former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort was convicted on bank and tax fraud felonies.

Trump's isolation was the focus of The New Yorker's new cover, revealed Friday, which depicts hounds closing in on the president:

In an interview with "Fox & Friends" that aired Thursday morning, Trump denounced the longstanding legal practice of "flipping" former confidantes for criminal investigations and court proceedings, declaring that it "almost ought to be illegal."

The mounting convictions, guilty pleas, and grants of immunity this week, all "provide leverage and pressure on Trump himself," concluded Litman. "If the organization goes down, it's terrible for him. If all his people are put under pressure and tell the secrets they know, it's terrible for him. There's a real sense that the criminal justice system is biting back [against the president]."

Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Pentagon Contractors in Afghanistan Pocketed $108 Billion Over 20 Years

Military contracting "obscures where and how taxpayer money flows," and "makes it difficult to know how many people are employed, injured, and killed," said the Costs of War Project report's author.

Jessica Corbett ·

Fetterman Demands Dr. Oz Answer for $50,000 Tax Break Intended for Pa. Farmers

"Dr. Oz does not want to live in Pennsylvania, and he doesn't want to pay taxes here; he just wants our Senate seat."

Julia Conley ·

With Antitrust Bills Stalled, Watchdogs Demand Schumer Disclose Big Tech Donations

"His close association with tech execs is worrying," said the progressive advocacy group that led the call.

Jake Johnson ·

Over 800,000 Brazilians Sign Pro-Democracy Manifesto Amid Bolsonaro Coup Threat

"We face the risk of having to live through a dictatorship once again—and this is inconceivable," one of the proclamation's authors warned.

Brett Wilkins ·

Nebraska Abortion Ban 3 Votes Short Shows Why Midterms ‘Matter So Damn Much'

"Poll after poll has shown that a majority of Nebraskans support abortion rights," said the state's Democratic Party chair. "But there are radical Republican senators that will keep trying to erode reproductive rights."

Julia Conley ·

Common Dreams Logo