- Former porn star Stormy Daniels says she had an affair with President Donald Trump in 2006, a year after he married Melania Trump and just months after the first lady gave birth to Barron.
- On Tuesday, Trump’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to eight federal crimes, including making illegal contributions to the Trump campaign on the same day he facilitated a $US130,000 payment to the porn star to keep her from speaking about the affair.
- Trump has been plagued by allegations of affairs and sexual misconduct throughout his three marriages to Ivana Trump, Marla Maples, and Melania Trump.
- Business Insider has created a timeline of exactly when these relationships, rumoured affairs, and reported acts of sexual harassment and assault allegedly took place over the years.
After months of speaking out about her alleged affair with President Donald Trump, Stormy Daniels says she is “vindicated” by Michael Cohen’s guilty plea on Tuesday.
Cohen, Trump’s longtime lawyer, struck a deal with prosecutors to plead guilty to eight federal crimes. While Daniels was not mentioned by name, Cohen pleaded guilty to making illegal contributions to the Trump campaign on the same day he facilitated a $US130,000 payment to the porn star to keep her from speaking about the affair.
“Michael [Avenatti] and I are vindicated and we look forward to the apologies from the people who claimed we were wrong,” Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, told NBC News in a statement.
While Daniels has been in the limelight due to the Cohen’s alleged payments, she isn’t the only woman who claims to have had an affair with Trump while he was married. A former Playboy model says that she had an affair with Trump around the same period, and a number of women have accused the president of sexual harassment and assault during the years he has been married to Melania. (Trump denies these claims.)
Here’s a timeline that spells out when Trump’s marriages started and ended, as well as alleged and confirmed affairs and accusations of sexual misconduct that reportedly occurred during these periods:
Melania Trump is not the president’s first wife. That would be Ivana Trump, who married Donald Trump — then a young real estate developer — in 1977.
Ivana is the mother of Donald Jr., Ivanka (whose actual name is Ivana Marie), and Eric Trump. Ivana also worked to develop the Trump Organisation as vice president of interior design.
Trump’s reputation was tied to his “playboy” image, which came with rumours of affairs. According to one report, Trump tried to get Playboy magazine to run a “Girls of Trump” spread featuring his employees.
“He even tried to get Playboy to do a spread called ‘The Girls of Trump,’ wooing his most shapely staffers, including a former beauty queen secretary, into posing for the magazine with a sliding scale of offers on everything from full nude to breast to ‘wet-lip’ shots,” Wayne Barrett wrote in his 1991 book “Trump, The Greatest Show on Earth: The Deals, The Downfall, The Reinvention.”
Barrett continued: “It was all part of the rakish ethos of phony glamour that he consciously fostered, even to the extent of concealing from public view a very efficient secretary with a pimplish facial condition.”
More than a dozen women have said that Trump sexually assaulted them or committed other acts of sexual impropriety, with allegations stretching back to the 1980s.
Jessica Leeds told The New York Times in 2016 that Trump “grabbed her breasts and tried to put his hand up her skirt” when the pair were seated next to each other on a flight in the early 1980s, when Trump would have been married to Ivana.
“He was like an octopus,” Leeds told The Times. “His hands were everywhere.”
Trump denied Leeds’ claims, as well as other allegations of sexual assault.
Trump’s marriage to Ivana fell apart when he began an affair with the model Marla Maples, which dominated the tabloids in the early 1990s.
Ivana and Trump divorced in 1991, after months of headlines about Trump’s affair with Maples.
“The children are all wrecks,” Ivana told gossip columnist Liz Smith. “Ivanka now comes home from school crying, ‘Mummy, does it mean I’m not going to be Ivanka Trump anymore?’ Little Eric asks me, ‘Is it true you are going away and not coming back?'”
Maples and Trump were married in 1993, soon after the birth of their daughter, Tiffany. In 1997, the pair announced plans to divorce.
Trump wasn’t single for long. In 1998, he met model Melania Knauss. The pair married in January 2005.
In September 2005, Trump was caught on tape telling “Access Hollywood” host Billy Bush that he was able to “grab” women “by the p—y” because “when you’re a star they let you do it.”
The tape was published by The Washington Post just before the 2016 presidential election, at which time Trump called his commentary “locker room banter.”
Melania gave birth to the couple’s only son, Barron, in March 2006.
Trump allegedly had a sexual encounter with former adult film star Stormy Daniels just four months later, in July 2006.
The alleged affair reentered the spotlight earlier in 2018 with the news that Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, had facilitated a $US130,000 payment to Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, shortly before the 2016 election.
On Tuesday, Cohen pleaded guilty to eight federal crimes, including making an illegal campaign contribution on the same day he facilitated the payment to Daniels.
Playboy model Karen McDougal allegedly started an affair with Trump even closer to the birth of Barron, in June 2006.
American Media, a media company that owns the National Enquirer and has close ties to Trump, bought the exclusive rights to McDougal’s story, The Wall Street Journal reported in 2016. But, the company did not run any pieces on the story – something that The New Yorker notes is a tactic commonly used by media outlets to kill a story.
The White House claimed the incidents discussed in the document did not happen, with a spokesperson telling The New Yorker, “The President says he never had a relationship with McDougal.”
A number of woman have also alleged that Trump sexually harassed or assaulted them during his relationship and marriage to Melania.
People’s Natasha Stoynoff alleged in 2016 that Trump pushed her against a wall and “shoved” his tongue “down her throat” when she went to Mar-a-Lago to interview him and the very-pregnant Melania in December 2005.
Summer Zervos, a former contestant on “The Apprentice,” said that Trump “very aggressively” kissed her, groped her breasts, and began “thrusting” his genitals at her in a 2007 meeting at The Beverly Hills Hotel.
Trump has denied all of these allegations.
Melania has stayed by Trump’s side throughout the repeated allegations that he cheated on her throughout their relationship, including when she was pregnant and soon after Barron’s birth.
However, the first lady often disappears from the public view when Trump’s alleged affairs make headlines.
In February, the first lady eschewed the traditional walk with the president across the White House’s South Lawn to Marine One after The New Yorker published its report on the McDougal affair.
The first lady also largely disappeared from public engagements with her husband after the Wall Street Journal reported in January that Trump’s lawyer organised the transfer of $US130,000 into Stormy Daniels’ account.
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