President Trump Must Face Accusations of 'Apprentice' Contestant

Judge says presidency doesn't make Trump immune to defamation lawsuit: 'No one is above the law'

Judge: Trump cannot avoid lawsuit by former 'Apprentice' contestant alleging defamation

A NY judge on Tuesday rejected President Trump's motion to dismiss a defamation lawsuit filed by Summer Zervos, a contestant on The Apprentice in 2005.

Trump has repeatedly said that all of the women who accused him of touching them inappropriately were lying - a sentiment his White House reiterated as questions resurfaced about these allegations.

After the suit was filed, Trump lawyers filed a motion to dismiss the case, arguing that a president has immunity from such lawsuits in state courts.

Trump also faces a lawsuit by porn actress Stormy Daniels to end an agreement under which she was paid $130,000 in what she called hush money to keep quiet about an affair she claimed to have had with Trump beginning in 2006.

But potentially the most serious and most damaging legal case involving Trump's alleged sexual history involves neither Clifford nor McDougal. Calling someone a liar is a factual claim, not an opinion.

"Nothing in the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution even suggests that the President can not be called to account before a state court for wrongful conduct that bears no relationship to any federal executive responsibility", she wrote.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Trump's legal team had argued the Jones decision applied only to federal courts and that Trump's campaign statements were political speech protected by the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment. She also alleged Trump kissed her, groped her breast and pressed his genitals against her at the Beverly Hills Hotel. The judge cites Paula Jones' case against Bill Clinton as precedent.

The ruling Tuesday was blunt in dismissing an argument made by Trump's attorneys that he can not be sued in state court while in office. "No one is above the law", wrote Judge Jennifer Schecter in a brisk, 18-page ruling in which she declined to dismiss the lawsuit.

"In holding that the doctrine of separation of powers did not mandate a stay of all private actions against the president, the court flatly rejected that 'interactions between the judicial branch and the executive, even quite burdensome interactions, necessarily rise to the level of constitutionally forbidden impairment of the executive's ability to perform its constitutionally mandated functions", Schechter said of the 1997 case. "From there, it could - and perhaps likely will - be appealed to the Supreme Court".

A court document provided to The Post on Tuesday by Michael Avenatti, an attorney for Daniels, describes the polygraph examination, which concluded that Daniels was being "truthful" about her allegations of a sexual encounter with Trump.

Zervos had met Trump when she became a contestant on "The Apprentice" in 2005.

Summer Zervos, right, listens alongside her attorney Gloria Allred during a news conference in Los Angeles last October.

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