Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

comment

Donald Trump’s legal woes could yet derail his presidential campaign – but not in the way you think

The former president has long weaponised felony charges to fire up his political fan base. But, having been ordered to pay more than $80m in a defamation case, he is in no doubt that such entanglements could cost him a fortune – and perhaps even the White House, says Jon Sopel

Tuesday 06 February 2024 11:55 GMT
Comments
Donald Trump sits in New York State Supreme Court during the civil fraud trial against the Trump Organisation in New York on 11 January
Donald Trump sits in New York State Supreme Court during the civil fraud trial against the Trump Organisation in New York on 11 January (AFP via Getty)

The memes were delicious. Funny, too. No sooner had the federal jury delivered its damages verdict against Donald Trump over his sexual assault of the writer E Jean Carroll than social media lit up; lit up in the brightest, twinkliest lights that would befit any Broadway opening night. He would have to pay her an astonishing, eye-popping, head-spinning $83m for the “storm of hate” he had unleashed. $83m!

On Twitter, Trump Tower on 5th Avenue became E Jean Carroll Tower; the famous blue, red and gold 727 plane owned by the former president now had the letters “T-R-U-M-P” crossed out and instead – you guessed it – “E Jean Carroll” written in giant letters along the fuselage. On social media, she owned him.

This was a civil trial, not criminal – Trump, though, had been anything but civil through the proceedings. He had been abusive of E Jean Carroll. Describing her as a chancer and a fantasist, he said he’d never met the woman he was alleged to have raped in the 1990s in a changing room in New York department store Bergdorf Goodman.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in