Strap in, folks. This is going to get ugly.
With Donald Trump as the frontrunner for the Republican nomination (I will never get used to writing that), he’s come under increased scrutiny. His daily embarrassments apparently are not enough ammunition to unseat him, so the Daily Beast decided to go back. Way back. The site pulled out the 1993 book, Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald J. Trump, by Harry Hurt III, which details a rape allegation that Trump’s ex-wife, Ivana, asserted in their divorce papers. Hill writes:
“Then he jams his penis inside her for the first time in more than sixteen months. Ivana is terrified…It is a violent assault… According to versions she repeats to some of her closest confidantes, ‘he raped me.’”
Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, did not appreciate having two-decades old allegation resurface, and pushed back against the Daily Beast. Here was his rebuttal:
You’re talking about the front-runner for the GOP, presidential candidate, as well as private individual who never raped anybody.
And here is where he really got into trouble:
“And, of course, understand that by the very definition, you can’t rape your spouse … It is true. You cannot rape your spouse. And there’s very clear case law.”
Look: The laws on marital rape are different in each state, and it’s true that “marital rape” only really began being considered a crime in the 1980s and 1990s. But that’s not the point. The point is, every sane person in the United States understands that marital rape is rape, and the marital rape exemption in New York was struck down in 1984.
Michael Cohen, however, didn’t stop there. He went full-Trump on the Daily Beast, according to THR, and you should never go full-Trump:
“I will make sure that you and I meet one day while we’re in the courthouse. And I will take you for every penny you still don’t have. And I will come after your Daily Beast and everybody else that you possibly know.
“So, I’m warning you, tread very f*cking lightly, because what I’m going to do to you is going to be f*cking disgusting. You understand me?”
“You write a story that has Mr. Trump’s name in it, with the word ‘rape,’ and I’m going to mess your life up … for as long as you’re on this frickin’ planet … you’re going to have judgments against you, so much money, you’ll never know how to get out from underneath it.”
“So you do whatever you want. You want to ruin your life at the age of 20? You do that, and I’ll be happy to serve it right up to you.”
“I think you should go ahead and you should write the story that you plan on writing. I think you should do it. Because I think you’re an idiot. And I think your paper’s a joke, and it’s going to be my absolute pleasure to serve you with a $500 million lawsuit, like I told [you] I did it to Univision.”
I didn’t recognize much legalese in that statement. In fact, that sounded a lot like this to me:
Here’s the sad irony: Given the fact that Trump seems to rise in the polls every time he does something dumb, I can only imagine that this will boost his standing another five points.