Long Reads

The most important moments from Stormy Daniels’ 60 Minutes interview

Posted by
Sarah Biddlecombe
Published

As Stormy Daniels gives her first televised interview about her alleged affair with Donald Trump, we look back at her most important revelations.

Last night, Stormy Daniels finally broke her silence over her alleged affair with President Donald Trump, in a highly anticipated interview with Anderson Cooper on CBS news show, 60 Minutes.

Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, claims that she had a consensual sexual relationship with Trump back in 2006, not long after his wife Melania gave birth to the couple’s first and only child, Barron. However, the adult film star had kept quiet about the details of the alleged affair after signing a “hush agreement” just a week and a half before the 2016 election, which saw Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton to the presidency.

Trump has denied the affair through his spokesman, and news of the hush agreement only officially came to light in February, when Trump’s personal attorney Michael D Cohen admitted to paying Clifford $130,000 in exchange for her silence. The murky world of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) has already been under scrutiny in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, as the disgraced producer is known to have used NDAs prolifically as a way of silencing women who accused him of sexual misconduct. Some of those women, including Weinstein’s ex-PA Zelda Perkins, have chosen to speak out and face the potential financial and legal consequences.

It seems that Clifford has chosen to follow suit – as a potential consequence for speaking about the alleged affair on the news show, she could face being slapped with a fine of $1million from Trump’s lawyers. She is now suing Trump to have the hush agreement overturned, although the President has responded, through his lawyers, to say he will sue to enforce it. 

The eyes of the US – and the world – are watching to see how the legal saga will unfold. The issues surrounding the case could even lead to Trump being required to offer depositions, which could put him in serious legal jeopardy: as CNN notes, Bill Clinton was impeached for lying under oath about a relationship that occurred before he was president.

Read on to see some of the most important revelations made by Clifford regarding both her alleged affair with the President, and the events that followed.  

The alleged affair was consensual

Having noted that people were “trying to” use her story for a number of different agendas, Clifford made it clear that her account was not part of the #MeToo narrative, stating that her alleged sexual relationship with Trump was entirely consensual.

“This is not a ‘Me Too’,” she said. “I was not a victim… I think trying to use me to… further someone else’s agenda, does horrible damage to people who are true victims.”

The pair only had sex once

Clifford told 60 Minutes host Cooper that she had consensual sex with Trump only once in 2006, after the pair met at a celebrity golfing tournament. During this initial encounter, Clifford claimed he had offered to get her an appearance on The Apprentice, telling her, “You’re gonna shock a lotta people, you’re smart and they won’t know what to expect”.

She alleged that a year later, in 2007, Trump invited her to his private bungalow in LA to discuss a potential appearance on Celebrity Apprentice. She said that he tried to have sex with her again during this meeting, but she turned him down.

Answering “yes” when Cooper asked her if Trump wanted to have sex with her again, Clifford said he “came and sat next to me and, you know, touched my hair, and put his hand on my leg, and referenced back to how great it was the last time”.

When she asked him about her potential appearance on Celebrity Apprentice he replied that he would “have an answer for [her] next week”, and she left the bungalow.

Trump allegedly told Clifford she reminded him of her daughter

Clifford shared a number of candid details about her alleged affair with Trump, including how she jokingly swatted his backside with a magazine that had his face on the cover before they had sex. She said she asked him about his wife, Melania, and their newborn baby, and that he “brushed it aside”, telling her “don’t worry about that… we have separate rooms and stuff”.

Clifford also claimed that, before they had sex, Trump told her that she reminded him of his daughter, Ivanka.

Recalling his alleged words, she said he told her: “wow, you are special. You remind me of my daughter… You’re smart and beautiful, and a woman to be reckoned with, and I like you. I like you.”

Clifford claims she was threatened into silence

In May 2011, some five years after her alleged affair with Trump, Clifford sold her story to the Bauer media group for $15,000. However, two former employees of the company told 60 Minutes that her account was never published because, after ringing Trump for a comment, his lawyer, Cohen, threatened to sue if the story ran. 

Clifford told Cooper that she was never paid for the Bauer interview, and that she was threatened in Las Vegas while holding her young daughter just a few weeks after giving the interview.

“I was in a parking lot, going to a fitness class with my infant daughter,” Clifford said. “A guy walked up on me and said to me, ‘Leave Trump alone. Forget the story.’ And then he leaned around and looked at my daughter and said, ‘That’s a beautiful little girl. It’d be a shame if something happened to her mom.’ And then he was gone.”

Stating that she “absolutely” perceived the man’s words to be a threat, Clifford described how she was left “rattled” by the encounter. “I remember going into the workout class. And my hands are shaking so much, I was afraid I was gonna drop her,” she said. She added that she did not go to the police at the time because she was too scared.

The hush agreement could spell trouble for Trump

Clifford signed the hush agreement in exchange for $130,000 just 11 days before the presidential election. Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, claims that he paid her with his own money, and has said that this means the transaction cannot be classed as a campaign contribution.

However, since the agreement was signed so close to the election, it may go against campaign finance laws.

Speaking on 60 Minutes, Trevor Potter, a former chairman of the Federal Election Commission, said the fee paid by Cohen could be viewed as a contribution to benefit Trump’s campaign.

“It’s a $130,000 in-kind contribution by Cohen to the Trump campaign, which is about $126,500 above what he’s allowed to give,” he said. “And if he does this on behalf of his client, the candidate, that is a coordinated, illegal, in-kind contribution by Cohen for the purpose of influencing the election, of benefiting the candidate by keeping this secret.”

The issue is now being investigated.

You can read the full transcript of the interview here.

Main image: Getty