President Donald Trump’s bid to delay a lawsuit from a woman who accused him of rape was unsuccessful when a New York judge shot down his legal team’s argument that the presidency should shield him from the case.
Manhattan judge Verna Saunders cited a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that the president isn’t protected from criminal investigations, saying the same principle applies to E. Jean Carroll’s defamation suit. Trump’s lawyers argued that the Constitution protects presidents from being dragged into state court lawsuits.
N.Y. Supreme Court denied Trump's effort to delay lawsuit filed by Jean Carroll–allows her to pursue DNA sample to prove he sexually assaulted her. Justice Saunders–recent Supreme Court decision demonstrates state court can exercise jurisdiction over a sitting President. (CNN)
— Fran Ervin (@MaryFranErvin) August 7, 2020
Carroll’s lawyer wants to ‘tell the truth about the fact that Donald Trump had sexually assaulted her’
“No, it does not,” Saunders wrote.
The court decision will allow Carroll to continue to seek Trump’s DNA for possible evidence as well as pursuing her overall suit. Carroll also claims Trump slurred her with his denial that he raped her in the 1990s.
Carroll’s lawyer, Roberta Kaplan said,”We are now eager to move forward with discovery so that we can prove that Donald Trump defamed E. Jean Carroll when he lied about her in connection with her brave decision to tell the truth about the fact that Donald Trump had sexually assaulted her.”
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Carroll, a longtime advice columnist for Elle magazine, alleged last year that Trump raped her in the dressing room of a Manhattan department store in the 1990s.
Trump said Carroll was “totally lying” to sell a book and that he’d never met her. Yet a 1987 photo shows both Trump and Carroll with their spouses at the time at a social event.
I didn’t do it. I didn’t say that. I don’t know those gentlemen. E. Jean Carroll / Stormy Daniels…never heard of them.pic.twitter.com/3Nr6KIKKuO
— LiA (@LibsInAmerica) July 19, 2020
Team Trump continues to claim that presidents have immunity from state-based lawsuits
Trump claims the photo was just a random moment in which he was standing in a line and she got lucky capturing a picture.
Carroll wants Trump’s DNA to see if it matches as-yet-unidentified male genetic material found on a dress that she says she was wearing during the alleged attack.
Trump’s lawyers say the suit shouldn’t move forward until New York’s highest court decides if presidents should have immunity in a separate case.
Sir, one of the chief signs of dementia is repeating the same words over and over. https://t.co/RKtyJbr6NS
— E. Jean Carroll (@ejeancarroll) August 2, 2020
Previous U.S. Supreme Court decisions have said incumbent presidents can’t be sued over official actions, but alleged rape falls into the category of private behavior.
Carroll’s lawyers continue to argue that the justices already answered that question when it was ruled last month that Trump’s tax records could be subpoenaed for a state grand jury investigation.
“We cannot conclude that absolute immunity is necessary or appropriate,” the Supreme Court said.
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