CHARLESTON, W.Va. There hasn't been a darker moment for a president or for the presidency since Richard Nixon resigned on the verge of impeachment in 1974.

On Tuesday, Michael Cohen, the president's longtime fixer and former personal lawyer, pleaded guilty to felony crimes that included illegally paying women hush money to help Donald Trump win the presidency in 2016. Most important, he said he did so at Trump's direction.

In other words, Trump cheated to win the White House, according to one of his closest former associates.

Cohen's admissions were so damaging for the president, both legally and politically, that his lawyer Rudy Giuliani could point only to the lack of an indictment directly against Trump as the good news.

"The president is clearly guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors," New York Times columnist Bret Stephens, a conservative,
wrote on Twitter
after the Cohen plea.

It wasn't just a bad day for Trump, it was a historically awful day for the presidency.