Bob Bauer for The Atlantic:
It is a strange turn of events when a president famous for denouncing “fake news” is discovered to have entered into an agreement with a media organization to finance the concealment of very real but politically unfavorable newsworthy information. The Wall Street Journal reports that Donald Trump entered into an explicit agreement with the chairman of American Media (AMI), David Pecker, to help his campaign by buying off women who claimed to have had affairs with Trump. AMI came through: It paid Karen McDougal $150,000 to “catch and kill” her account of an affair with Trump. She did not know at the time that the background agreement between AMI and Trump existed, but was instead told that in addition to compensation for the exclusive rights to her story and an option for columns on fitness and health, she would be the featured model on two magazine covers.