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Trump seeks dismissal of ‘Apprentice’ defamation lawsuit

Summer Zervos claims she was slandered when Trump denied her groping accusation.

President Donald Trump, seen here on March 29,

President Donald Trump, seen here on March 29, is accused of groping a former "Apprentice" contestant. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Jeff Swensen

President Donald Trump on Monday filed a notice of appeal of a Manhattan state judge’s refusal in March to dismiss a defamation claim brought against him by Summer Zervos, a former “Apprentice” contestant who claims the president groped her.

Zervos claims she was slandered when Trump denied her accusation. Trump tried to get the case dismissed or delayed on grounds of presidential immunity. His motion was denied on March 20 by New York Supreme Court Justice Jennifer Schachter.

Lawyers for Trump, in the notice of appeal filed Monday, argue the Constitution bars state courts from exercising jurisdiction over a sitting president, and the refusal to stay the case will “prejudice President Trump’s ability to execute his” presidential duties.

Trump is also claiming on appeal that Zervos’ case should be dismissed because his general denials of her claims were “non-defamatory opinions made in quintessentially political forums” that are protected by the First Amendment.

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