From politicians losing their positions over sexual-misconduct allegations to concerns of voter fraud in multiple midterm elections, 2018 was not without its share of political controversies.
Read on for a look at nine of the most notable political scandals of the past year.
Michael Cohen was once a trusted member of the Trump Organization and personal attorney and “fixer” to the president. But by year’s end, the man who once said he would “take a bullet” for President Trump had flipped on his former boss, cooperating with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe.
In December, Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison after pleading guilty to charges of tax evasion, campaign finance violations and lying to Congress about a Trump real estate deal in Russia. Ahead of his sentencing, Cohen blamed his actions on “blind loyalty” to Trump, which he said led him “to take a path of darkness instead of light.” He told the judge he felt it was his duty to cover up the president’s “dirty deeds.”
Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, also was found guilty on multiple counts of federal tax and banking crimes in August. A month later, Manafort pleaded guilty as part of an agreement with Mueller’s team in a separate case related to charges of foreign lobbying violations and witness tampering.
The deal was to include “full cooperation” with Mueller’s team as they investigate whether any Trump associates played a role in Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election. But in December, Mueller accused Manafort of lying to the FBI and his office “on a variety of subject matters,” thus violating the plea agreement.
Manafort has disputed the special counsel’s claims.
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