As MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow noted, the judge’s question was a good one: “If the Michael Cohen case can just become a local prosecution case in New York, why can’t the Paul Manafort case become a local prosecution case in D.C. or indeed Virginia?”
She continued: “So far we’ve seen nothing in the prosecutors’ filings in the Manafort case that shows a connection to Russsian campaign interference in the presidential election. I mean, if the Manafort crimes are a separate, discrete matter,
if they’re all about his bank and tax fraud charges related to his work in Ukraine years ago, then why wouldn’t those also be handed off to separate prosecutors?”
“Does that mean that these multiple felonies against Paul Manafort … [are] related to Russian interference in the 2016 election?” Maddow asked provocatively.