Trump Loses Defamation, Sexual Battery Case
E. Jean Carroll’s late and questionable story persuaded a Manhattan jury to penalize Donald Trump $5 million.
“I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters,” Donald Trump marveled of his supporters’ “incredible” loyalty in January 2016. Could he commit sexual assault against someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose any voters?
That’s no longer a hypothetical question, at least not in the sense that a Manhattan jury found Trump liable for more likely than not sexually assaulting E. Jean Carroll at a Fifth Avenue department store on an indeterminate date sometime around 1996, and then for defaming her after she finally told her story 23 years later in a 2019 memoir that needed selling. She subsequently sued and won on Tuesday. Trump was ordered to pay $5 million to Carroll, a former advice columnist for Elle magazine.
The first thing that must be said of the verdict is that it’s near laughable to think Trump actually received a fair hearing, much less a presumption of innocence, in a New York borough that voted against him 87-12. Quite the opposite, in fact. Trump Derangement Syndrome runs deep in New York City, despite all the real estate Trump developed and taxes he paid there over the years. Ironically, they probably hate him most because he “embodies New York values.”
Moreover, Carroll’s case was far from rock solid. Despite two contemporaneous witnesses corroborating her account, there are plenty of reasons to think her story doesn’t add up. A popular celebrity managed to loudly subdue her in a crowded department store in a mysteriously unlocked dressing room with no attendant in sight? Joe Tacopina, lead attorney for Trump, noted the similarity between her story and a 2012 episode of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.”
It’s telling that the jury didn’t find even on the lesser “preponderance of the evidence” standard that Trump raped Carroll as she alleged.
Perhaps that’s because she also specifically did not allege rape. “It was an episode,” she told The New York Times in 2019, before filing the lawsuit. “It was an action. It was a fight. It was not a crime. It was, I had a struggle with a guy.” She added, “I am not — I have not been raped.”
Given Carroll’s statement and the near total lack of evidence, we can only wonder whether a jury in, say, Tulsa would have found Trump guilty of anything. Or whether a Manhattan jury would have found a defendant not named Trump guilty.
That said, Trump Derangement Syndrome cuts both ways, as Trump himself practically asserted in that lead quote. For some folks, even mildly critical words about Trump are tantamount to blasphemy.
Apologies in advance, but we’re about to fairly criticize him, which does not take away from the years we spent defending him and his stellar record.
Trump didn’t exactly comport himself with decorum after Carroll leveled her accusation. Humility isn’t in his playbook. There’s certainly something to be said for treating garbage accusations as garbage, and perhaps he did just that. Still, it would have been better to approach things with a tad more grace or even a hint of restraint.
One of the reasons Carroll prevailed in this case is Trump’s own mouth. “It didn’t happen,” he argued in his October deposition, “and by the way, if it did happen, it would’ve been reported within minutes.” He also said Carroll is “not my type.”
He’s the same guy who misidentified a 1980s photo of Carroll, saying, “That’s Marla,” as in Marla Maples, his second wife. Challenged on that, he insisted the photo was “blurry.”
Prosecutors also successfully used that infamous “Access Hollywood” tape that was released in October 2016, in which Trump asserted that stars like him can “do anything” to a woman. “I’m automatically attracted to beautiful women — I just start kissing them, it’s like a magnet,” he said in the tape. “Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ‘em by the p***y.”
When asked specifically about that quote in his deposition, Trump somehow made it worse:
Trump: “Well, historically, that’s true with stars.”
Questioner: “It’s true with stars that they can grab women by the p***y?”
Trump: “Well, that’s what, if you look over the last million years I guess that’s been largely true. Not always, but largely true. Unfortunately or fortunately.”
Questioner: “And you consider yourself to be a star?”
Trump: “I think you can say that, yeah.”
Whether or not Carroll is telling the truth, Trump at least joked about doing such things and then smugly defended his prior comments, which obviously helped persuade the unanimous jury of six men and three women. It also likely didn’t help that he exercised his right to not be present for the trial, but opted instead to play golf in Scotland and leave his crass statements as the only thing the jury heard from him.
We’re not agreeing that he’s guilty.
But it doesn’t matter what we think. It matters what voters think about the fact that, for the first time in American history, a presidential candidate was found civilly liable for sexual assault. That’s to say nothing of his other myriad legal troubles, including perhaps further defamation cases now that there’s a track record against him. Remember, two-thirds of voters don’t identify as Republican. We also suspect the contingent who’d vote for him even if he shot someone on Fifth Avenue is smaller now than it was in 2016.
Ask yourself if Democrats and their media propagandists are so eager to talk up Trump’s candidacy and prospects because they’re genuinely afraid he’ll win or because they’ve beat him in three straight elections. (Yeah, we know, but even if those defeats were illegitimate, they’re still a matter of record.)
Sadly, it’s no defense of Trump to say, Well, Democrats do it too. But we are going to say that at least for the record because their hypocrisy knows no bounds.
Joe Biden was also accused of sexual assault by Tara Reade, whose story is at least as credible as E. Jean Carroll’s. Reade’s story was completely buried by the mainstream media. Biden will never face a question about it, much less spend a dime of the millions of dollars Hunter earned for him to settle anything.
Bill Clinton… Well, enough said.
There’s also Jeffrey Epstein, who cavorted with an untold number of Democrats on that private jet and island of his. We may never know how many of his Democrat guests perpetrated sexual crimes, sometimes against minors. The main thing we do know is that the media is likewise utterly uninterested in digging up any dirt on those Democrats.
Voters in 2024 may face this question: Do you pick Trump, or the party that has dedicated the last eight years to deranged and hypocritical witch hunts, conspiracies, and lies about him?
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