Summer Zervos, a former contestant on The Apprentice, can proceed with her defamation lawsuit against President Trump, a New York appellate court ruled Thursday, rejecting the president’s assertion he cannot be sued in state court.
The decision means the president may have to sit for a sworn deposition, which is currently scheduled for June.
The New York State Appellate Division’s First Department turned down Trump’s argument that the case should be halted until he is out of office because, as a sitting president, he was immune from a lawsuit brought in state court.
“We reject defendant President Trump’s argument that the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution prevents a New York State court – and every other state court in the country – from exercising its authority under its state constitution,” the judges wrote. “Instead, we find that the Supremacy Clause was never intended to deprive a state court of its authority to decide cases and controversies under the state’s constitution.”
Zervos was among 19 women who publicly accused Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign of sexual misconduct dating back years earlier. He denied the allegations and called the women liars, which prompted Zervos to sue for defamation.