On Monday, a federal judge dismissed former President Donald Trump’s defamation lawsuit against writer E. Jean Carroll.
According to The Hill, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan dismissed Trump’s argument Carroll defamed him last May, ruling Carroll’s statement made on a cable network was substantially true and “[t]here would have been no different effect on the mind of an average listener.”
“The difference between Ms. Carroll’s allegedly defamatory statements — that Mr. Trump ‘raped’ her as defined in the New York Penal Law — and the ‘truth’ — that Mr. Trump forcibly digitally penetrated Ms. Carroll — is minimal. Both are felonious sex crimes,” Kaplan ruled.
Kaplan, a Clinton appointee, separately rejected Trump’s defense that he has “absolute presidential immunity” in the case.
Trump attorney Alina Habba said the former president would be filing an appeal shortly, calling it a “flawed decision.”
“We are pleased that the Court dismissed Donald Trump’s counterclaim,” Carroll attorney Robbie Kaplan said in a statement.
“That means that the January 15th jury trial will be limited to a narrow set of issues and shouldn’t take very long to complete,” she continued. “E. Jean Carroll looks forward to obtaining additional compensatory and punitive damages based on the original defamatory statements Donald Trump made in 2019.”