Meet the former playboy model who claims she's had an affair with Donald Trump
There probably hasn't been a president in the history of the US whose sexual life has been more speculated about than Donald Trump. Even Bill Clinton, who almost committed perjury over his affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky between 1995-1996, hasn't provoked as much controversy with his dalliances as the Trumpster has.
This is hardly surprising, considering that Donald Trump has often cultivated an image of himself as something of a playboy, and a number of statements he has made in the past - as well as his more questionable conduct during the Miss Universe beauty pageants - have led some of his detractors to accuse him of non-consensual sexual acts; accusations which seemed to bear more weight after the infamous leak of the Billy Bush recordings, in which Trump claimed that his celebrity status gave him the right to "grab them by the p*ssy."
But now, a shocking new account from a former playboy model seems to accuse the president of doing a lot more than just grabbing.
According to the testimony of Karen McDougal, 'Playmate of the Year' in 1998, she and Trump had a clandestine affair back in 2006 after meeting at a pool party thrown by the late Hugh Hefner. At the time of their first encounter, Trump had already been married to First Lady Melania for two years. What's even more scandalous is that Trump's staff has apparently gone to great lengths to bury the story.
McDougal claims that her sexual encounters with Trump were entirely consensual, but the Trump spin team's efforts to keep the story out of the press are somewhat suspicious. Writing for the New Yorker, investigative journalist Ronan Farrow learned that McDougal has been made to sign a non-disclosure agreement, which prevented her from discussing the details of the affair. American Media, Inc., publisher of National Enquirer, paid $150,000 for the McDougal story.
Yet the story never materialized. It is thought that AMI, working in co-operation with Trump, intentionally bought exclusive rights to the story specifically so that they could neglect to write it: a tabloid practice known in the industry as "catch and kill."
McDougal has since stated that she has been terrified of revealing the details of the affair for fear of legal reprisal, and regrets signing the contract, stating: "It took my rights away ... At this point I feel I can’t talk about anything without getting into trouble, because I don’t know what I’m allowed to talk about. I’m afraid to even mention his name."
The White House has allegedly denied the possibility of a past affair between the president and McDougal, and a spokesperson told Farrow that "This is an old story that is just more fake news. The President says he never had a relationship with McDougal."
This incident has occurred not long after another alleged extramarital affair between the president and a third party leaked to the press. In January the Wall Street Journal reported that Trump's attorney had apparently paid pornographic actress Stormy Daniels (real name Stephanie Clifford), to buy her silence about another affair conducted in 2006.
However, this week Trump attorney Roger Cohen acknowledged that he himself had paid Ms Clifford the fee, stating: "In a private transaction in 2016, I used my own personal funds to facilitate a payment of $130,000 to Ms. Stephanie Clifford ... Neither the Trump Organisation nor the Trump campaign was a party to the transaction with Ms. Clifford, and neither reimbursed me for the payment, either directly or indirectly.”
We still do not know whether or not McDougal is telling the truth, but this isn't the first time that we've been given a candid look at the president's administration. Check out these 11 astonishing claims from the shocking exposé of Trump's first term in office.