New York, NY - Rosie O’Donnell is facing scrutiny after offering $2 million to two Republicans to vote against President Donald Trump’s tax cut bills.
On Tuesday, O’Donnell posted a tweet that promised to give Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Arizona) $2 million each if they voted against the tax reforms, according to the New York Daily News.
“no s**t,” she tweeted at about the same time the senators voted for the tax cuts. “2 million cash each.”
O’Donnell then sent a tweet specifically to Collins that said, “susan – 2 million dollars cash call if you want to negotiate.”
“i swear,” she wrote in another tweet, “i will write them a check.” “i will HAPPILY pay any GOP senator 2 million dollars to vote NO,” she said in another, “they have been paid obviously.”
The federal law regarding bribery defines it as anyone who “directly or indirectly, corruptly gives, offers or promises anything of value to any public official” in exchange for an action, such as a vote.
Rebecca Roiphe, a New York Law School professor, told the New York Daily News that O’Donnell probably didn’t break the law.
“It’s political commentary,” said Roiphe, a former prosecutor. “What she’s trying to do is show these people had already been bought off.”
Most prosecutors would use their discretion, Roiphe said, and look at the context of the political situation and not go to the effort of talking to O’Donnell.
“It all rides on what her intent was in writing that tweet,” Roiphe told the New York Daily News. And trying to buy influence isn’t “the point of this whole string of these tweets. What she’s trying to do is fake-offer a bribe to point out that they’ve already been politically been bought.”
Conservative commentator Ben Shapiro was among many online that claimed that O’Donnell broke the law by offering bribes.
O'Donnell replied eloquently.
Forbes suggested that O'Donnell is well known for tweeting controversial declarations about President Trump which would make convincing a jury that O'Donnell actually had the intent to influence senators through cash offers via tweets extremely difficult.
Do you think that this was a clear bribe? We'd like to hear what you think. Please let us know in the comments.