When CNN’s Anderson Cooper asked Donald Trump at the last presidential debate to confirm that he “did not actually kiss women without [their] consent,” we knew what lay in store.
The New York Times led the way Wednesday in what is sure to be a parade of women coming forward to claim that Trump touched them “inappropriately,” and the Republican nominee, no stranger to litigation, is threatening to sue the newspaper.
The Times ran a story naming two such women, Jessica Leeds and Rachel Crooks, which was immediately denied as a work of “fiction” by the Trump campaign.
“NYT editors, reporters, politically motivated accusers better lawyer up,” a high-ranking source within Trump’s campaign told CNN Money.
— CNN Business (@CNNBusiness) October 13, 2016
In a taste of what may await other media outlets looking to join the parade, Marc E. Kasowitz, a lawyer representing Trump, sent an open letter to Times executive editor Dean Baquet.
“Your article is reckless, defamatory and constitutes libel per se,” Kasowitz wrote. “We hereby demand that you immediately cease any further publication of this article, remove it from your website and issue a full and immediate retraction and apology. Failure to do so will leave my client with no option but to purse all available actions and remedies.”
Trump campaign just released this letter from his lawyers demanding a full retraction/apology from the New York Times. pic.twitter.com/QobvFbCllb
— McKay Coppins (@mckaycoppins) October 13, 2016
For what it’s worth, Trump’s legal team also threatened to sue The Times for publishing his 1995 tax return in early October.
CNN reported that the source also named The Palm Beach Post as a possible target of a lawsuit after the Florida newspaper ran a story of its own featuring another women who claimed Trump had groped her.