The Federal Election Commission (FEC) announced on May 6 it would not seek any campaign violation enforcement action regarding Donald Trump's payment to Stormy Daniels AKA Stephanie Clifford made by the now-disgraced felon and former Trump-attorney Michael Cohen just days before the 2016 election. Trump paid Daniels to prevent her from disclosing an alleged 2006 sexual relationship with him. The commission's decision cannot be appealed.
DISPOSITION: The Commission Closed the File
By law, no more than three commissioners can represent the same political party on the six-person panel, and at least four votes are required for any official FEC action.
Two Republican commissioners said they exercised their prosecutorial discretion not to advance the complaint. Their principal reason for dropping the matter was Cohen's criminal prosecution, because the lawyer was named as a party to the complaint along with Trump.
The Democrats did not agree. Commissioners Shana Broussard and Ellen L. Weintraub wrote:
"To conclude that a payment, made 13 days before Election Day to hush up a suddenly newsworthy 10- year-old story, was not campaign-related, without so much as conducting an investigation, defies reality."
Trump had every legal right to engage in a contract with Daniels to pay her money to keep quiet about their dalliance, depending on his motivation. If he were motivated by a desire to keep the revelation of the story from his wife, for instance, that is le...