But now, Hubris has humbled Roger Stone, Michael Cohen and Paul Manafort.
All three men have been convicted or convicted, or have pleaded guilty to crimes and alleged offenses that in most cases are not directly related to their work for the president.
But if they were not eagerly dived into the Trump's riding tank, and if he did not run for the President, they would not have drawn the attention of the special adviser Robert Mueller and possibly other prosecutors in cases that led to their downfall.
The White House line, whenever one of the president's men goes down, is that none of it has nothing to do with Trump. Technically, that is often true: So far no one of the trio has been charged with a conspiracy to collude with Russia, for example.
What is clear is that these are men who have Trump been happy have it by his side While their partnerships were working and before the prosecutors swooped, he never seemed to be troubled by their dubious reputations and bare-knuckle tactics.
And Manafort traded in the life of a jet-setting international political consultant who rubbed the shoulders with the oligarchs to turn Trump, the 201
If their story has a common moral, it is this: Sooner or later, even hard-charging political and legal bruisers who seem to fly
Only time, Mueller, various other legal proceedings and the excitement of congressional investigations will tell if Trump hisse lf will learn the same hard truth or was smart enough to avoid the fate of his tainted operatives.
'Attack, attack, attack'
"Attack, attack, attack – never defend," he said. "Admit nothing, deny everything, launch a counterattack."
But there was no attack, attack, attack on Thursday. That Roger Stone was nowhere to be seen in a Washington courtroom. He was abject and apologetic after he was hauled in to explain his Instagram post.
His bravado drained out of him in the day the life of political chicanery finally claimed its price.
"I do not offer any rationalization or excuse or justification. , "he told the furious judge, pleading his case by saying he was having trouble putting food on the table and paying rent owing to legal fees.
Stone has been walking the line and crossing over it for decades. In effect, he was being cross-examined by Judge Amy Berman Jackson for being Roger Stone. And now, thanks to the full gag order, which will prevent him from talking about the case in the media, that person should go silent on the topic that interests him most – his political tricks.
"He has played this character for David Urban, who mastered Trump's victory in Pennsylvania in the 2016 campaign and is now a CNN commentator.
"He has always pushed the line, and I "Urban said in CNN's" The Lead. "
Jackson told Stone that his apology was hollow and she was not impressed with his explanations.  "This is not a baseball, there's no third chance," she said.
The depth of his plight might have begun dawning on Stone as the gag order was formally imposed.
"He just put his head in his hands, he leaned back and it looked like his eyes were closed, letting the reality of this sink in, "said CNN reporter Kara Scannell, who was in the courtroom.
Cohen vows he will not be Trump's" villain "
Cohen attached himself to Trump more than a decade ago, glorying In the role of the legal strongman who cared for business.
When his famous client became a presidential candidate, Cohen turned himself into a political The surrogate for the man he always referred to as "Mr. Trump. "
Once, Cohen said he would" take a bullet "for Trump.
Michael Cohen came to Capitol Hill ahead of his testimony next week ” data-src-mini=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190111135846-03-michael-cohen-lead-image-small-169.jpg” data-src-xsmall=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190111135846-03-michael-cohen-lead-image-medium-plus-169.jpg” data-src-small=”http://cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190111135846-03-michael-cohen-lead-image-large-169.jpg” data-src-medium=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190111135846-03-michael-cohen-lead-image-exlarge-169.jpg” data-src-large=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190111135846-03-michael-cohen-lead-image-super-169.jpg” data-src-full16x9=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190111135846-03-michael-cohen-lead-image-full-169.jpg” data-src-mini1x1=”//cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/190111135846-03-michael-cohen-lead-image-small-11.jpg” data-demand-load=”not-loaded” data-eq-pts=”mini: 0, xsmall: 221, small: 308, medium: 461, large: 781″ src=”data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhEAAJAJEAAAAAAP///////wAAACH5BAEAAAIALAAAAAAQAAkAAAIKlI+py+0Po5yUFQA7″/>
A broken man
Another Trump associate who tumbled to Manafort was an uber-lobbyist and epitome of Washington's swamp culture, exporting the dark arts he learned as a GOP operative to several unsavory political characters abroad.
Before he was snared by Mueller, Manafort was an uber-lobbyist and epitome of Washington's swamp culture.
He worked for pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine, in just one of the contacts that have drawn interest in Mueller.
Manafort also built a bloated real estate portfolio, with one home boasting an outdoor kitchen financed from offshore accounts. His Hamptons hideaway included a $ 10,000 karaoke system and a giant flowerbed in the shape of M.
Now Manafort may be facing the rest of his life in jail.
He will be sentenced for his conviction of financial fraud on March 8, a federal judge in Virginia said Thursday He will be sentenced in Washington, where he pleaded guilty to conspiracy and broke a plea deal with Mueller on March 13.
Even before long years behind bars, Manafort is a painfully diminished figure.
In his most recent court appearance last month, he had to ask the judge for permission to wear a suit instead of his dark green prison duds.
As he left the courtroom, Manafort blew a kiss to his wife, Kathleen.