Trump hits ABC and Stephanopoulos with lawsuit, says host tarnished his reputation with rape comment

Former President Donald Trump is going after ABC News and George Stephanopoulos, claiming defamation following a headline-making interview with Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.)

The lawsuit filed in federal court in Miami on Monday alleges that Stephanopoulos said Trump had been found “liable for rape” multiple times during the interview on “This Week” on March 10 which drew attention when Mace accused the anchor of trying to “shame” her for endorsing Trump.

“Judges and two separate juries have found him liable for rape and for defaming the victim of that rape. How do you square your endorsement of Donald Trump with the testimony we just saw? ” Stephanopoulos asked Mace, a rape survivor, referring to lawsuits by columnist E. Jean Carroll.

“Well, I will tell you, I was raped at the age of 16,” Mace said. “Any rape victim will tell you, I’ve lived for 30 years with an incredible amount of shame for being raped. I didn’t come forward because of that judgment and shame that I felt. It’s a shame that you will never feel, George.”

Trump has denied Carroll’s allegations and a federal jury in New York last year found the presumptive 2024 Republican nominee liable for sexual abuse and defamation, not rape in the civil case. He was ordered in January to pay Carroll $83.3 million.

Trump’s attorney Alejandro Brito said the false statements were made “with actual malice or with a reckless disregard for the truth.”

“Indeed, the jury expressly found that Plaintiff did not commit rape and, as demonstrated below, Defendant George Stephanopoulos was aware of the jury’s finding in this regard yet still falsely stated otherwise,” Brito said in the 20-page complaint.

“Since making such false, malicious, and defamatory statements, many news and press outlets have continued to quote Stephanopoulos by wrongfully broadcasting that Plaintiff was found liable for rape,” the filing reads.

According to the lawyers for the former president, ABC News did not apologize or correct the record after Trump’s representatives reached out to the outlet for a retraction.

Deadline reported:

According to the lawsuit, Trump’s team contacted ABC News after the Mace interview, asking for a retraction and apology, but they did not. They did modify a headline of a related article that removed the reference to “rape” to “sexual assault,” according to the lawsuit. The litigation also cited more than 10 instances when Stephanopoulos said that Trump was found “liable for rape” or “was found to have committed rape.”


A jury trial has been requested and the lawsuit seeks an unspecified amount of damages.

It seems the former president has already found plenty of support for his lawsuit against Stephanopoulos, once the White House communications director for then-President Bill Clinton.

Frieda Powers


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