LOS ANGELES — President Trump's attorneys yesterday asked a federal judge to force adult superstar Stormy Daniels into arbitration, rather than a jury.
Daniels sued Michael Cohen, Trump’s private attorney, to be released from the nondisclosure agreement she signed in 2016 in exchange for $130,000 as part of a "hush" agreement.
Daniels previously said she and Trump had sex once in 2006, and that they kept in touch for a period of time. The White House has denied that Trump had sex with Daniels, and Cohen has claimed he paid Daniels out of his own pocket.
Yesterday’s court filing notified U.S. District Judge James Otero that “defendant Donald J. Trump hereby joins in defendant Essential Consultants LLC’s motion to compel arbitration.”
Essential Consultants is the name of the Delaware-based shell company that Cohen passed the $130,000 to Daniels.
“This motion seeks to enforce the arbitration provision in the settlement agreement,” submitted Brent Blakely, the attorney representing Cohen. “The strong policy favoring arbitration set forth by Congress in the Federal Arbitration Act dictates that this motion be granted.”
Michael Avenatti, Daniels’ attorney, tweeted that he will “vigorously oppose” the motion.
“We will vigorously oppose the just-filed motion by DJT and MC to have this case decided in a private arbitration, in a private conf room, hidden from the American public,” Avenatti tweeted. “This is a democracy and this matter should be decided in an open court of law owned by the people.
“And the Declaration Mr. Cohen just filed is more interesting for what it DOES NOT state - it does not state that he never discussed the agreement with DJT, that DJT did not know about the agreement, or that DJT did not ultimately pay the $130k (all issues DJT is also silent on),” Avenatti’s tweet said.