Breaking down the John Edwards criminal trial
Former federal prosecutor Marc Mukasey weighs in
- Duration 5:41
- Date Apr 23, 2012
Former federal prosecutor Marc Mukasey weighs in
Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
-- former federal prosecutor and SEC enforcement attorney Marc Mukasey mark thank you for being here so I think he set it up very well the questions are.
Were these campaign contributions and did Edwards know that they were being used by his team to funnel money to his mistress.
That's exactly right -- in this case is being set up by a lot of that critics and pundits has.
Some sort of novel legal application of the law.
That's really -- what it's about it's about what John Edwards Edwards knew and it's about whether he intended to circumvent.
In a secretive way using -- that scheme.
Deceit fraud a trick.
The Federal Election Commission laws because he did not report the million dollars they came from these two don't actually did not report it so if it was a campaign contribution he violated the law.
Exactly right he's charged with six counts potentially thirty years in prison.
The first count is a conspiracy.
To fail to disclose the contributions in the second is a conspiracy to violate campaign.
About -- the law says if you just because Edwards is running for office doesn't mean he picked yet seeking it gets if he's got wealthy friends.
But of how do you determine that whether it's crossed over in -- campaign donation you have to report.
That's why we have a jury and the jury is a judge of the facts very -- thing.
Previously there have been advisory opinions people candidate's right to be.
Federal Election Commission they want to know I wanna make sure I'm not violating the law you mean he didn't do that well apparently not -- Surprisingly not well this is as I said it's North Carolina 921 -- here right he's.
Characters but I want to ask you about this because Edwards now is -- -- and make his case to the Federal Election Commission but he's gonna have to make it to the jury and we don't know whether he'll take this in his own defense.
But love him or hate him he's a persuasive guy there's a reason he made all that money.
As a plaintiff's attorney and as a politician was very successful for awhile and for -- star witness against him sat Dallack Hannity after the book came out.
And put it this way in terms of his persuasive -- -- that's.
You have to understand John Edwards is not your average Joseph this is one of the most persuasive.
Trial lawyers and politicians.
Around I mean -- this guy Arkansas -- estimates.
To some people maybe not to you look at a lot of people when he's on when he's on and he's very -- you have to admit that at minimum he's very persuasive.
I was never that impressed.
Well isn't that the pot calling the kettle black this is a guy that stood up in front of the world and said this is my baby so.
Threatened he claimed that Edwards is baby with Ariel was his baby to protect your -- exactly right so for Andrew Young to sit there.
And throw stones at John Edwards know that sort of -- a strange paradox of the jury's not likely to love mister young but I ask you this are they likely to love mister Edwards because -- razzle dazzle easy may be they're also gonna hear testimony from Andrew law -- young.
Like this listen to this.
At the end of it he threw and the closer.
Elizabeth was dying of cancer she's -- -- in very short order and we need to give give the press what they want.
And if we give them a story of two of two staffers having an affair though they don't care about your standard they care about me.
And this'll go away if we just give them that story and as soon as Elizabeth as you come back to -- in the right hand man and everything will be fine.
And you profited off this.
And you've stood up in front of the world and claimed.
That this is your baby Andrew Young have and you Andrew Young have very little credibility so if I with -- defense -- cross examining Andrew Young.
What it's like a lion and red -- -- -- factor that was so big on both sides there's no one left to root for.
If you are good lawyers -- -- -- -- -- this key factor I learned that the first day in the Haskell -- if this is this is a battle to the bottom.
Now the defense.
From Edwards seems to be it was a gift and I didn't know anything about it right my people were taking care and they just -- -- it is -- so they wanted to give gifts galore.
And the only reason that that it was being paid and -- to the mister -- to protect my family against embarrassment.
In that interview that Andrew Young gave Hannity.
It does seem that Edwards stood to gain significant embarrassment.
If this came out not just because he was having an affair with a pregnant with a woman he got pregnant.
On a wife who was.
It's dealing with cancer at the time but it turns out according -- young we L hunter is a little.
She is -- polar opposite Elizabeth command she was a new age spiritual us.
Truly believe that the baby was the reincarnation of a Buddhist monk that it died just before or the baby is born.
And the baby was a combination of the senator's charisma and elect and her new age spiritualism.
I was sent here not just say the United States but the universe.
Does that testimony come into court.
Who'd listen that if -- -- hunter takes a stand and apparently she's on and witness list for both the prosecution and the defense.
I I don't know who wins and I don't know who loses.
What I would say is in a criminal case it is hard to convince twelve people beyond a reasonable doubt if anything it's hard to convince twelve people.
That the sky is blue because sometimes the sky is pink and gray and black especially lawyers argue over it.
And in this case I mean.
You really have to be.
To the law to facts the burden of proof and if I'm Edwards I'm thinking look I look awful this is a terribly.
Kind of case.
But the government's witnesses are are actually not Arianna I'll have to fake you -- good -- -- -- it's good to see him.