|Stormy Daniels with lawyer Michael Avennati|
Stephanie Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels, sued Donald Trump for defamation over Trump’s assertion that Daniels’ lied about supposed threats against her. She is represented in the case by Democrat presidential hopeful Michael Avenatti.
Those alleged threats were covered by us on April 17, 2018, Internet Works Feverishly to Identify Sketch of Stormy Daniel’s Alleged Threatener After Her Attorney Posts Reward Offer:
cuStormy Daniels the (former?) porn star who claims Trump paid her $130,000 to keep quiet about their affair now claims she was threatened in 2011.
Daniels claims the “well dressed” man approached her in a parking lot and told her to “Leave Mr. Trump alone.” Trump called the claim a “total con job”:
The tweet to which Trump was responded pointed out that the sketch of the alleged perp looked like Daniels ex husband:
Some people (like us, jokingly) speculated it looked like Avenatti:
The Court threw out the lawsuit, finding Trump’s commentary was protected by the First Amendment. It’s important that Trump moved to dismiss, and the court granted dismissal, under the Texas Anti-SLAPP [Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation] Statute because that is where Daniels resided, even though the case was in California and Trump is a New Yorker. The court reasoned:
Under New York’s choice-of-law principles, the law of the situs of the injury generally applies to a tort lawsuit involving diverse parties. See Stoyanovskiy v. Amerada Hess Corp., 286 A.D.2d 727, 728 (2001). However, in this day and age, with the publication of statements in online fora, the tort of defamation often involves a plaintiff injured in several jurisdictions. For multistate defamation actions, where the situs of the injury may be in multiple jurisdictions, “New York applies the law of the state with the most significant interest in litigation,” which generally is the state where a plaintiff is domiciled. See Lee v. Bankers Trust Co., 166 F.3d 540, 545 (2d. Cir. 1999). Plaintiff alleges in the Complaint that Ms. Clifford is a “resident of the State of Texas,” (Compl. ¶ 1), and conceded during argument on September 24, 2018 that Ms. Clifford is domiciled in Texas. (See Transcript of Proceedings at 11: 7.) Therefore, this Court applies Texas law to Plaintiff’s allegations of defamation and Defendant’s Special Motion To Dismiss/Strike. [footnote omitted]
So when the court threw out the lawsuit, it did so under the Anti-SLAPP statute, which grants the successful defendant attorney’s fees, subject to a submission of proof:That should cool off some of the steam in his presidential run. It might even take a couple of days for weak minded liberals to raise the money.
Having granted the Special Motion and denied Plaintiff leave to amend, the Court finally holds that Defendant is entitled to attorney’s fees. Texas law is unambiguous that “the TCPA requires anaward of ‘reasonable attorney’s fees’ to the successful movant.” Sullivan v. Abraham, 488 S.W.3d 294, 299 (Tex. 2016). “A ‘reasonable’ attorney’s fee ‘is one that is not excessive or extreme, but rather moderate or fair.'” Id. (quoting Garcia v. Gomez, 319 S.W.3d 638, 642 (Tex.2010)).Trump just submitted his motion for attorney’s fees. (h/t Brad Heath Twitter)
He’s seeking $341,559.50 in legal fees plus sanctions. The full motion (pdf.) is embedded at the bottom of this post.
A petty piece by Shannon Pettypiece at Bloomberg: Trump May Answer Mueller Questions Post-Election, Giuliani Says. Or not.
President Donald Trump’s legal team has prepared written responses to several dozen questions from Special Counsel Robert Mueller but say they won’t submit them until after next week’s elections and only if they reach a broader agreement with Mueller on terms for the questioning.One of those names that keeps coming up: ImperatorRex_: "1. Nuland is a key player in and an important actor in the Obama/Clinton scheme. Remember, the Fusion/Steele fake Intel would never […]" #SpyGate #MAGA
Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal attorney, said in an interview Monday that the answers relate only to whether Trump colluded with Russia during his presidential campaign. He said the legal team is still unwilling to answer any questions concerning obstruction of justice by the president.
Giuliani also said that a face-to-face interview with Mueller is “off the table” for now but isn’t being ruled out completely.
This week the Wombat has returned, along with "Late NIght With Rule 5 Sunday: Nurse! Nurse!" (gic) and FMJRA 2.0: Back In The Saddle.