WASHINGTON (AP) — Adult film star Stormy Daniels says she was threatened to keep silent about an alleged sexual encounter with Donald Trump in 2006, telling her story in a highly anticipated interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” broadcast Sunday.
Daniels said she was threatened by an unidentified man in Las Vegas to keep quiet about her alleged relationship with Trump, an incident that she said happened while she was with her young daughter. She said in the interview that she had one encounter of consensual sex with the future president.
“He knows I’m telling the truth,” said Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford. She does not allege that she was coerced in her encounter with Trump, saying, “This is not a ‘Me too.’ I was not a victim.”
The adult film actress provided little new evidence of her alleged 2006 affair with Trump but said she faced intimidation tactics aimed at ensuring her silence in 2011.
Daniels said that in the incident, in a parking lot, the man told her: “Leave Trump alone. Forget the story.” She said he then looked at her daughter and said, “That’s a beautiful little girl. It’d be a shame if something happened to her mom.”
Daniels received a $130,000 payment days before the 2016 presidential election for her silence and has sought to invalidate a nondisclosure agreement.
The White House did not immediately comment Sunday on the interview. Trump, through his representatives, has denied the allegations. His attorney, Michael Cohen, has said Trump never had an affair with Daniels. Cohen has said he paid the $130,000 out of his pocket.
Cohen has said neither the Trump Organization nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Daniels and he was not reimbursed for the payment. However, Daniels’ attorney Michael Avenatti told “60 Minutes” he has documents showing Cohen using his Trump Organization email address in setting up the payment and that the nondisclosure agreement was sent by FedEx to Cohen at his Trump Organization office in Trump Tower.
In the interview, Daniels described a sexual encounter with Trump that began with him talking about himself and showing her an issue of a magazine with his picture on the cover. She said she asked, “Does this … does this normally work for you?” He was taken aback, she says. “And I was like, ‘Someone should take that magazine and spank you with it.’” She says she then ordered him to drop his pants and, in a playful manner, “I just gave him a couple swats.”
She said they talked some more, although he quit talking about himself, and that she became more comfortable.
“He was like, ‘Wow, you — you are special. You remind me of my daughter.’ You know — he was like, ‘You’re smart and beautiful, and a woman to be reckoned with, and I like you. I like you.’”
She said after dinner in Trump’s room, they had sex. He didn’t use a condom, she said, and she didn’t ask him to. Afterward, he asked to see her again, she said.
Daniels said that before they had sex Trump had broached the idea of her being a contestant on “The Apprentice,” and she likened it to a “business opportunity.” She said he called her several times and would ask if they could get together again and that he had an update for her. She said she felt that he was dangling the opportunity to keep her coming back.
“Of course. I mean, I’m not blind. But at the same time, maybe it’ll work out, you know?” Daniels said.
In July 2007, a year after they had met, Daniels said Trump asked to meet with her privately at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles. She said they did not have sex, but he wanted to.
Daniels reported that Trump called her the following month to say he had not been able to get her a spot on his TV show. She said they never met again.
Daniels was asked why she’s talking now: “Because it was very important to me to be able to defend myself,” she said.
Daniels said she was fine saying nothing at all. “But I’m not OK with being made out to be a liar, or people thinking that I did this for money and people are like, ‘Oh, you’re an opportunist. You’re taking advantage of this.’ Yes, I’m getting more job offers now, but tell me one person who would turn down a job offer making more than they’ve been making, doing the same thing that they’ve always done?”
“60 Minutes” correspondent Anderson Cooper noted during the interview that Melania Trump had recently given birth just a few months before. “Did he mention his wife or child at all in this?” Cooper said. ”
“I asked. And he brushed it aside, said, ‘Oh yeah, yeah, you know, don’t worry about that. We don’t even, we have separate rooms and stuff’” Daniels said.
The CBS interview came as Trump deals with allegations about his sexual exploits long before he ran for president.
Former Playboy model Karen McDougal told Cooper in a CNN interview broadcast Thursday that her affair with Trump began at a bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel in 2006. McDougal said she ended the relationship in 2007 out of guilt.
McDougal has filed suit in Los Angeles seeking to invalidate a confidentiality agreement with American Media Inc., the company that owns the supermarket tabloid National Enquirer. It paid her $150,000 during the 2016 presidential election.
The lawsuit alleges that McDougal was paid for the rights to her story of an affair, but the story never ran. It also alleges that Cohen was secretly involved in her discussions with American Media.
Trump is also facing a New York defamation lawsuit filed by Summer Zervos, a former contestant on “The Apprentice.” Zervos has accused Trump of unwanted sexual contact in 2007 after she had appeared on the show with him, and sued after he dismissed the claims as made up.
A judge ruled the lawsuit can move forward while the president is in office.