A federal court in the United States on Monday dismissed the defamation lawsuit filed by adult movie star Stephanie Clifford aka Stormy Daniels, against President Donald Trump. Clifford had filed the suit after Trump dismissed her allegations that she was threatened to not talk about her affair with the US president, and called it a “total con job”.
District Judge James S Otero dismissed the suit on the grounds that the language Trump used to describe the allegations constitutes “rhetorical hyperbole” normally associated with politics and public discourse in the United States, CNN reported. “The First Amendment protects this kind of rhetorical statement,” the judge wrote in his verdict.
“No amount of spin or commentary by Stormy Daniels or her lawyer, Mr [Michael] Avenatti, can truthfully characterise today’s ruling in any way other than total victory for President Trump and total defeat for Stormy Daniels,” the president’s lawyer Charles Harder said.
Through Trump denied the allegations in April, in May he admitted to knowing about his attorney Michael Cohen paying $1,30,000 to Clifford, before the 2016 presidential elections. The president claimed that the payment to Clifford had nothing to do with his election campaign.
In 2016, days before the November 8 elections, Clifford signed a non-disclosure agreement on her affair with Trump. The movie star has now sought to invalidate the agreement.
Avenatti said he had filed a notice of appeal Monday evening in the defamation case. He also dismissed Harder’s claim that the outcome of the suit was a “total victory” for Trump. He said that even if Trump is owed his attorney’s fees, the fees he will have to pay in the non-disclosure agreement case will far exceed them.