Donald Trump's lawyer seems pretty ignorant of the law—at least as it pertains to marital rape. The Daily Beast reports that when Michael Cohen, special counsel for the Trump Organization, was asked about an alleged incident from 1989 involving Trump's ex-wife Ivana, he claimed "that by the very definition, you can't rape your spouse"—and then threatened reporter Tim Mak, allegedly telling him to "tread very f---ing lightly, because what I'm going to do to you is going to be f---ing disgusting." "You write a story that has Mr. Trump's name in it, with the word 'rape,' and I'm going to mess your life up ... for as long as you're on this frickin' planet," Cohen warned, per the Beast, which notes that New York outlawed marital rape in 1984.
The alleged incident Cohen was asked about was described in the 1993 Trump biography Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald J. Trump, reports the New York Daily News. The book, citing a divorce deposition, describes an incident in which Trump allegedly forced himself on Ivana as revenge for her having talked him into failed scalp-reduction surgery, though the book contains a statement from her saying that while she referred to the incident as "rape," she doesn't want her words "to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense." A Trump spokesperson tells Business Insider that the incident is "old news and it never happened" and that Ivana made it up to "exploit" Trump during divorce proceedings.