Trump Not in 'Punch-Back Mode' Over Stormy: Report

She's suing his lawyer for defamation
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 27, 2018 7:11 AM CDT
Stormy Daniels Sues Trump Lawyer for Defamation
Stormy Daniels visits a local restaurant in downtown New Orleans.   (AP Photo/Bill Haber, File)

The Stormy Daniels case is keeping lawyers—and lawyers' lawyers—as busy as ever in the wake of Daniels' 60 Minutes interview. On Monday, the adult film actress, who told Anderson Cooper she was threatened after she first went public about her alleged affair with President Trump, filed a legal complaint against Michael Cohen, Trump's personal lawyer. Her complaint says a statement Cohen made in January—"Just because something isn’t true doesn’t mean that it can’t cause you harm or damage"—was meant to make people think she is an untrustworthy liar. The complaint says the statement is defamation that has exposed her to "hatred, contempt, ridicule, and shame," Politico reports. Cohen made the remark in February when discussing a $130,000 payment he said he had made to Daniels out of his own funds before the 2016 election

Cohen, who denies Trump had an affair with Daniels in 2006, says he has the right to claim $20 million from her for violating a nondisclosure agreement. Sources tell the AP that Trump, who has publicly remained silent on Daniels, boasted to guests at Mar-a-Lago over the weekend that she owes another $1 million every time she talks and the interview makes the total $21 million. Friends of Trump tell the Washington Post that the president is "not in a punch-back mode" because he has little to gain from firing back, though they say the allegations have put strain on his marriage. White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah said Monday that the president has "strongly, clearly, and consistently" denied the claims. (Daniels' strategy has been called "downright Trumpian.")

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