The National Enquirer is owned by American Media Inc, a company chaired by Trump friend David Pecker. The company’s four-member board also includes a former chief financial officer of Trump’s casino business. It’s no secret that the Enquirer has been a friend of Trump.
Llikewise, it no secret that the Enquirer has been an enemy of Hillary.
The Enquirer has been accused of catching and killing other stories about Pecker’s friends, including Trump. However now that Michael Cohen appears to be likely to flip on Trump, Pecker has directed his focus on disparaging Michael Cohen. Cohen “is under the spotlight, as scandals swirl around his boss, and some are questioning Cohen’s role, alleging blackmail, threats, hush-money payoffs ― and even collusion with Russia,” the tabloid’s staff wrote. “The president is in the hot seat because of his lawyer.”
The tabloid is linked to the criminal investigation into Cohen’s financial dealings opened by the U.S. attorney’s office for New York’s southern district. The FBI raided Cohen’s office earlier this month as part of the investigation, seizing records related to payments made to women who have alleged having affairs with Trump.
Trump has been trying to create distance between himself and Cohen, who has been dubbed the president’s “fixer,” given his longtime role of quashing negative media coverage about his boss.
Jerry George, a former senior editor at American Media Inc, says the reported payoff to a former Trump building doorman shows how complicit AMI chief David Pecker is in buying stories to protect President Trump’s reputation, racking up what George called a “favor bank” of killed stories.
Asked to estimate how many Trump stories Pecker killed, George said “dozens of stories and hundreds of story leads that come in on the tip line that never see the light of day.”
Pecker is a longtime friend of the president.
George, who worked for AMI for 28 years until he was laid off in 2013, said it was uncommon for the National Enquirer to buy a story and not run it. Yet, it appears that is exactly what they did regarding Trump stories. “I remember sitting in story meetings where reporters would pitch Trump story after story and the editors would say ‘No thanks, we’re not interested in that,'” he said
“Pecker is all about money and, you know, the next big acquisition and who’s going to fund it. I’m not saying he doesn’t sincerely revere President Trump, but I guess it’s sort of a favor bank where he can say to the president – I have an arsenal of stories that I have kept out of print, so these scandals never saw the light of day.”