Via America’s Lawyer: Matt Gaetz’s world closes in on him as the DOJ investigates whether the FL congressman actively obstructed a federal probe into sex trafficking allegations. Mike Papantonio and Farron Cousins discuss more.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Mike Papantonio:             Congressman Matt Gaetz is now being investigated for potentially obstructing justice thanks to information obtained through cooperating witnesses. Joining me to talk about this is Farron Cousins, and I say it every week, some people get so tired of it, you are the best progressive voice in this country. I really mean that.

Farron Cousins:                  Thank you, thank you.

Mike Papantonio:             So give me, give me your take on this. I don’t, you have followed this. You’re on a jihad. You really are on a jihad. So let’s talk about what the latest development is. Okay.

Farron Cousins:                  Well, it’s very interesting. Last week, you know, it came out that they’re trying to see if Matt Gaetz may have obstructed justice. And this is based on a telephone call that took place between Gaetz’s ex-girlfriend and another witness. This was one of the people who had, essentially been one of the girls that Joel Greenberg had been using. So Gaetz’s ex-girlfriend was on the phone with this young woman and she says, well, hang on, let me patch in Matt. So they call Matt Gaetz, you got a three-way phone conversation happening here. And now the authorities believe there may have been obstruction of justice on this call and let’s, let’s not forget about a month ago, you and I were talking about the ex-girlfriend.

Mike Papantonio:             Right.

Farron Cousins:                  Who was telling her family members, she is worried she may have obstructed justice, and now we’re, we’re getting to the heart of that. It all revolves around that phone call.

Mike Papantonio:             This is what she was worried about?

Farron Cousins:                  Right. And she’s the one who’s also now cooperating with the feds. So whatever information she gave is what led to these new.

Mike Papantonio:             I want to tell you something. You know, I’ve had people call me and I’ve talked to folks that say, no, he’s fine. I mean, everything’s going to be okay with Matt Gaetz. And I keep saying, really, it’s not the way it’s looking right now. Right now, let’s assume you got a recording of something that sounds like obstruction of justice. First of all, obstruction of justice is not, it’s not an easy thing. The words have got to be right. Second of all, department of justice typically does not, they’re not going to go after anything that’s not low hanging fruit. Now the question is this has been going on for months. Are they worried? Are they worried, you know, is this is, is this the tail wagging the dog?

Farron Cousins:                  See, you know, that’s one thing I’ve, I, I’ve kind of been wondering myself here. Are they going after obstruction because that’s all they have left or are they looking at obstruction as maybe a way to work out a deal later and say, okay, we’ll drop the obstruction if you do X, Y, or Z? So I think it really could be either way. This could show they got nothing else so they’re trying to get whatever they can on him, or they want to get a small thing so they can get him to cop to the bigger things. You know, that’s a mystery that’s only gonna be unfolding.

Mike Papantonio:             Okay. And out there working also is the pay to play story. Tell me about it.

Farron Cousins:                  There’s so many different parts of this. You also have, you know, whether or not Matt Gaetz was involved in helping some of his good buddies in the medical marijuana industry as he was, you know, lobbying to get legislation passed, taking money. There’s so many pieces. I’m sorry, it’s so hard to keep track of everything here. But I think the big one is not even the obstruction. The big one is going to be if they, if they pin him traveling out of, across state lines.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. Here’s.

Farron Cousins:                  Paying for sex.

Mike Papantonio:             Mann Act is where they get him.

Farron Cousins:                  Yeah.

Mike Papantonio:             That’s my prediction. It’s going to be the Mann Act. Is the Bahamas meeting, they have the girlfriend there.

Farron Cousins:                  Yep.

Mike Papantonio:             They’ve got other women there. And then they’ve got the 17 year old that if you, if you, if you believe the story, Matt Gaetz had sex with this 17 year old. I mean, it, it just doesn’t, this is not an easy, if I’m a defense lawyer, I’m looking at this and I’m saying, there’s so many parts. There’s so many avenues they have to go after you with that maybe we ought to be realistic. But I gotta tell you something, as I’ve watched the department of justice for a career, if it’s not low hanging fruit, they’re not going to do it. Especially with a target like this.

Farron Cousins:                  With, and Greenberg, you know, his good buddy last week, his plea deal was officially accepted.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah.

Farron Cousins:                  So, you know, he only has 6 counts instead of 33.

Mike Papantonio:             33 counts, yeah.

Farron Cousins:                  So he must’ve had some very valuable information on high level targets. And they did say, I think it was five, five men, we don’t know who they are. One of them could be Gaetz. Maybe it’s not. But Greenberg had lots of info. They’ve accepted the plea. He’s obligated to work with them.

Mike Papantonio:             Still hanging out there the 17 year old.

Farron Cousins:                  Yeah.

Mike Papantonio:             Who’s now 19, maybe 20 at this point.

Mike Papantonio is an American attorney and television and radio talk show host. He is past president of The National Trial Lawyers, the most prestigious trial lawyer association in America; and is one of the few living attorneys inducted into the Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame. He hosts the international television show "America's Lawyer"; and co-hosts Ring of Fire Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio program, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Sam Seder.