On Tuesday, a federal court granted President Trump a legal victory in a defamation trial brought by a woman, E. Jean Carroll, who accused Trump of sexual assault in 1990. A divided three-judge panel on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals handed down the ruling saying a lower court was incorrect when it said Carroll could sue Trump personally for alleged statements that Carroll claimed were inflammatory. That’s not the final verdict in the case, however.
The Hill reports:
The 2nd Circuit panel asked the top local court in Washington to weigh in on another key issue bearing on Trump’s potential immunity: whether Trump was acting “outside the scope” of his presidency when he allegedly defamed Carroll by casting doubt on her credibility and demeaning her personal appearance.
Whether or not Carroll’s defamation suit can proceed against Trump now hinges on how the D.C. Court of Appeals interprets local D.C. employment law.
Trump has denied raping Carroll. In a June 2019 interview with The Hill, Trump said Carroll was “totally lying” when she accused him of raping her during an encounter in a New York department store in the mid-1990s.
Trump added: “I’ll say it with great respect: Number one, she’s not my type. Number two, it never happened. It never happened, OK?”
Trump’s attorney Alina Habba said following the ruling, “We are extremely pleased with the Second Circuit’s decision today in reversing and vacating the District Court’s finding in this matter. This decision will protect the ability of all future Presidents to effectively govern without hindrance.”