Sexual Misconduct
Using sexual misconduct for political purposes has proven a successful strategy for over 30 years. In the era of Trump 'resistance' the strategy has a renewed priority.

Judge Dismisses Stormy Daniels’ Defamation Suit Against Trump

from The Wall Street Journal,

Michael Avenatti, Ms. Clifford’s attorney, said he would appeal the ruling and noted that her other claims against the president are unaffected.

A federal judge in California dismissed a lawsuit brought by Stormy Daniels against President Donald Trump that accused him of defaming her in a tweet. U.S. District Judge S. James Otero in Los Angeles ruled on Monday that the former adult-film star, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, must pay Mr. Trump’s legal fees in the case. Michael Avenatti, Ms. Clifford’s attorney, said he would appeal the ruling and noted that her other claims against Mr. Trump are unaffected. The same judge is overseeing claims Ms. Clifford brought against the president and his former attorney, Michael Cohen, to invalidate a nondisclosure agreement she signed in exchange for a $130,000 payment to silence her about an alleged sexual encounter with Mr. Trump. The defamation lawsuit, originally filed in Manhattan in April but moved to Los Angeles, centered on Mr. Trump’s response to a sketch-artist’s rendering of a man who Ms. Clifford said warned her not to speak about her alleged affair with Mr. Trump.

Mr. Avenatti distributed the sketch over social media on April 17. Mr. Trump tweeted the following day, “A sketch years later about a nonexistent man. A total con job, playing the Fake News Media for Fools (but they know it)!” Ms. Clifford argued in the defamation suit that the tweet attacked the veracity of her account and suggested she was falsely accusing someone of committing a crime against her. Judge Otero said Mr. Trump was entitled to voice opinions about Ms. Clifford and respond to her allegations, noting that she had styled herself as his public adversary. “If this court were to prevent Mr. Trump from engaging in this type of ‘rhetorical hyperbole’ against a political adversary, it would significantly hamper the office of the president,” Judge Otero wrote in his 14-page ruling. “Any strongly-worded response by a president to another politician or public figure could constitute an action for defamation.” The president’s tweet, Judge Otero wrote, “displays an incredulous tone” that suggests it wasn’t meant to be read literally.

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