Donald Trump may have fathered a child with Playboy bunny Shera Bechard, who was paid $1.6 million for her silence–and an abortion–in a deal arranged by Trump lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen.
The father has been identified in media reports as long-time Trump pal Elliott Broidy, a deputy finance chairman of the Republican National Committee. He was forced to resign as a result of the scandal.
But a theory based on circumstantial evidence is going viral on Reddit that suggests Broidy was covering up for Trump in exchange for favors, influence and indirectly, contracts for his companies worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
The theory is supported by enough evidence, albeit circumstantial, to make it plausible. If true, it could mean more criminal exposure for both Trump and Cohen, whose offices and home were raided last week by FBI agents.
As one Reddit user who put the theory together suggests. “There are just too many inconsistencies [in the cover story] and it fits Trump’s pattern.”
The Playboy model was identified as Bechard, a strikingly attractive blonde with augmented breasts who looks remarkably like Stormy Daniels, the porn star who was also paid by Cohen to remain silent about her affair with Trump.
Bechard was a former girlfriend of Playboy founder Hugh Hefner, who was close friends with Trump, The president was frequently spotted at Hef’s Playboy mansion in Los Angeles during the time he was filming “Celebrity Apprentice.”
A video shows Trump arriving at the mansion on one such occasion. Yet another Playboy model, Karen McDougal, is also in the video. She says she had a 10-month affair with Trump in 2006-07, shortly after wife Melania Trump gave birth to son Barron.
Last year, during the election, McDougal was paid $150,000 by The National Enquirer in a so-called “catch and kill” scheme. The tabloid owned by long-time Trump pal David Pecker, silenced her with a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), but never ran the story.
Trump lawyer Cohen also reportedly had a finger in the scheme.
It’s well known that Trump frequently brought Apprentice contestants to the mansion. One Apprentice contestant, who was taken to the Playboy mansion as a prize for winning, had this to say:
“Toward the end of the evening, I found myself in a small circle, conversing with Trump, Hefner and another contestant. With a wry smile, Trump looked at Hefner and said, ‘It’s hard for me to tell which of these girls are yours and which ones are mine.'”
“Trump liked to say that one of the things that made life worth living was getting your friends’ wives into bed,” according to author Michael Wolfe’s tell-all Trump book “Fire and Fury.”
Hefner was a big supporter of Trump’s candidacy in 2015. But within a year, the relationship had soured, according to Newsweek, citing Hefner’s son, Cooper Hefner as a source.
“The Trump-Hefner relationship soured,” Cooper told The Hollywood Reporter. “We don’t respect the guy.”
Although it’s unknown what, exactly, caused the falling out, the theory holds that it could have Trump’s involvement with Bechard.
Comedian Tom Arnold lends some credibility on this point of the theory. In a 2017 video, he’s discussing his and Trump’s relationship with Hefner and Trump’s penchant for bedding Playboy models.
“He was always certainly good to me…and to Donald Trump,” Arnold says. “I’m not kidding at all. Well Donald had… two of his girlfriends were Playmates. Recently. I’m not even kidding on that either,” Arnold says.
Another common link between Bechard, Daniels and McDougal is the fact that they used the same lawyer, Keith Davidson, to negotiate payments with Cohen. In fact, Cohen reportedly used the same aliases in Bechard’s and Daniels’ NDAs.
Cohen effectively had only one client…Donald Trump. “So why would Cohen now suddenly be representing Broidy in this matter unless it in some way directly involved Trump?” the theorist postulates.
Broidy claims he only hired Cohen after learning that the Trump fixer knew Bechard’s lawyer, according to The Washington Post.
“Mr. Cohen reached out to me after being contacted by this woman’s attorney, Keith Davidson,” Broidy said in his statement. “Although I had not previously hired Mr. Cohen, I retained Mr. Cohen after he informed me about his prior relationship with Mr. Davidson.”
Davidson has been contacted by federal authorities in New York City who are investigating Cohen and is cooperating with them, a spokesman for Davidson confirmed.
The Beverly Hills lawyer is supposedly well-known for negotiating payments for NDAs and may have been a go-to guy for women like Bechard, McDougal and Daniels.
One troubling aspect of the Bechard NDA is the fact that it doesn’t explicitly address the issue of paternity, according to reports. Why would you agree to pay $1.6 million and then explicitly exclude any proof of paternity?
Although Bechard claimed Broidy was the father, The NDA reportedly states that matters relating to the alleged pregnancy and paternity of the alleged child are excluded from the claims resolved in the agreement, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Bechard declined to provide proof she was pregnant with Broidy’s child, a person familiar with the matter told The Journal.
If Trump needed someone to stand up for him, Elliott Broidy would be the perfect candidate. He’s well known for shady dealings in New York and attempts to peddle influence with the Trump administration.
In 2009, the California venture capitalist and reputed billionaire pleaded guilty to influence peddling for showering state officials with nearly $1 million in gifts and favors to win a lucrative contract with the New York State pension system, according to The New York Times.
Another state official, prosecutors said, was rewarded indirectly by Broidy when his relative was given a fake consulting contract worth more than $380,000,” according to The Times.
Broidy paid the $1.6 million to Bechard, not because he was the father of her baby, but because he hoped to wield influence with Trump on behalf of two Middle Eastern clients, with whom he sought to gain lucrative contracts, according to a separate story in The Times.
Hundreds of pages of correspondence between Broidy and George Nadar, a political adviser to the ruler of the United Arab Emirates, (UAE), show a concerted effort to influence the White House on behalf of the UAE and Saudi Arabia. The urged Trump to sack Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson, and support more confrontational approaches to Iran and Qatar, according to the newspaper account.
In fact, Trump fired Tillerson over Twitter and is seeking to appoint hardliner and current CIA Director Mike Pompeo as his replacement.
They also pressed Trump to meet privately, outside the White House, with the UAE leader.
Broidy also tried to peddle influence on behalf of Prime Minister Najib Razak of Malaysia. The Southeast Asian leader is under investigation by American prosecutors for allegedly embezzling $3.5 billion from a state investment fund. Broidy tried to convince Trump to play golf with Najib to bolster his credibility in his home country.
Najib had the authority to award a lucrative Malaysian contract to Broidy’s private defense company, according to documents obtained by The Times.
In that light, paying to cover-up Trump’s affair with a Playboy model, her subsequent abortion and then, providing cover for the President would be small change compared with the leverage he would gain over Trump, according to the theory.
Whether there was a cover-up and whether it unravels remains to be seen. But the New York federal investigation is zeroing in on Cohen.
As damaging as Trump’s Stormy Daniels affair has been, the revelation he impregnated Bechard would be catastrophic to his presidency. His evangelical base, already reeling from his dalliance with a porn star, would be utterly shocked if he had an affair that ended in an abortion.
Cohen could also face additional charges for fraud and campaign finance law violations. Broidy could also be facing criminal charges.
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