A lawyer for President Trump on Friday sought to have a defamation lawsuit against the president by a former “Apprentice” contestant dismissed. Summer Zervos, a restaurant owner who appeared on the reality show in 2006, filed the lawsuit in January after Trump responded to her accusations of sexual harassment by publicly calling her claims “made-up stories and lies.” Zervos had alleged during Trump’s campaign that he kissed and groped her at the Beverly Hills Hotel in 2007. In court filings cited by The Washington Post late Friday, attorney Marc Kasowitz argued that Trump could not have defamed Zervos because her claims were false and aimed at harming Trump’s presidency. Kasowitz said Trump’s comments were also protected by the First Amendment, and thus could not be considered defamation. In addition, he said, Trump can only be sued through federal courts now that he is president, and any state legal action should either be dismissed or postponed while he is in office.
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