The growing scandal between President Trump and adult entertainer Stormy Daniels (nee Stephanie Clifford) has intensified.
Daniels has now filed a lawsuit that alleges that a nondisclosure agreement she signed pertaining to an affair with Donald Trump was not signed by Trump himself, thus invalidating the deal. Daniels has previously asserted that her affair with the real estate mogul had occurred in 2006, while Trump was married to Melania.
The suit was filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court, according to The New York Times. The proceedings come in the wake of pressure put on Daniels by Trump's lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, who continued to attempt to keep Daniels from discussing the affair in public.
In her suit, Daniels now asserts that the agreement was purposefully never signed by Trump himself "so he could later, if need be, publicly disavow any knowledge of the Hush Agreement and Ms. Clifford.”
It is unclear at what point during the talks about the NDA Cohen had personally wired $130,000 into Daniels' bank account.
Now, a judge is being asked to clarify whether the NDA is legitimate.
Daniels' lawyers are hoping the proceedings will make way for the entertainer to speak more openly on the affair.
“We fully intend on bringing as much sunlight to this matter as possible,” said Michael J. Avenatti, an attorney for Daniels.
Both Cohen and The White House have not responded to requests for comments on the situation.
Last month, Cohen had claimed that the money used to pay off Daniels had come from his own personal account and not from Trump's campaign finances.
“Neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Ms. Clifford, and neither reimbursed me for the payment, either directly or indirectly,” Cohen said in a statement at the time. “The payment to Ms. Clifford was lawful, and was not a campaign contribution or a campaign expenditure by anyone.”
Cohen would not specify the extent to which Trump was aware of the payment or whether similar payments had been made to other people.
The suit has now made some details of Daniels' agreement public: signed only days before the 2016 election, Daniels would be expected to pay $1 million if she violated the terms within. The lines where Trump was expected to sign (under the pseudonym David Dennison) were indeed left blank.
Keith M. Davidson, the lawyer who represented Daniels (and another adult entertainer, Karen McDougal, who signed a similar agreement with Trump), has not offered a comment on the situation.
Should the courts rule in favor of Daniels, the actress may be able to discuss the details of the alleged affair. The extent to which her information may be able to damage Trump and his presidency remains unclear.
[Photo: Getty Images]