Andrew: I, too, believe Trump will be POTUS until 2020. The question is whether he will lose his ability to be impactful in that role between now and then. Trump University quit operating at about the half-way point between inception and the settlement of lawsuits. So perhaps, this could be viewed as precedence for Trump’s business practices causing him to be sidelined before the end of his first term.
Trump has shown he understands legal boundaries. He’s also shown a willingness, if not a proclivity, to cross the line if it furthers his personal objectives. But if practice makes perfect (just the public record list of settlements and fines paid is too long for this post), contingency plans for the “getting caught” scenario are already in place.
However, for the sake of discussion: Even if he there was conclusive evidence Trump broke the law, and restitution or fines couldn’t be used to avoid more serious consequences, the process to get to a judgment would not conclude before the end of his first term. But Trump knows settling and has settled when the probability of losing and the price of losing are both high. So in this scenario, a Nixon-like settlement (resignation and immediate Pence pardon) is not an impossibility. Of course, there would be no admission of wrongdoing and no apology to the American people.