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ABC News' George Stephanopoulos inaccurately said Trump was found 'liable for rape' 10 times, legal gurus say

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  vic-eldred  •  one month ago  •  39 comments

By:   New York (Fox News)

ABC News' George Stephanopoulos inaccurately said Trump was found 'liable for rape' 10 times, legal gurus say
Legal experts say ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos misrepresented what a jury found in the 2023 civil trial of advice columnist E. Jean Carroll vs. Trump.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



Rep. Nancy Mace accused ABC's George Stephanopoulos of trying to "shame" her for endorsing former President Trump in a heated interview Sunday.

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ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos consistently used a liberal talking point during his controversial recent interview with Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., according to Washington Examiner chief political correspondent Byron York.

Mace, a rape survivor, says she felt personally attacked when Stephanopoulos, a former top aide to President Bill Clinton, asked during a heated interview Sunday how she could support former President Trump when he was found "liable for rape." York, a Fox News contributor, says Stephanopoulos misrepresented what a jury found in the 2023 civil trial of advice columnist E. Jean Carroll vs. Trump.

"The problem with Stephanopoulos' question of Nancy Mace was that Stephanopoulos said 10 times, on 10 separate occasions, Donald Trump was found 'liable for rape' in the E. Jean Carroll case. He specifically said that the jury found Trump 'liable for rape' - now that's important. In fact, the jury specifically found Trump not liable for rape," York told Fox News Digital.

"Now, it did find him liable for 'sexual abuse,' so this is not an exoneration," York, who has written extensively about the E. Jean Carroll case, continued. "But, it's just a fact that the court asked the jury, 'Do you think Miss Carroll proved by preponderance of the evidence that Donald Trump raped her?' And they said, 'No.'"

Indeed, the federal jury in New York decided that Trump was not liable for rape but was liable for sexual abuse and defamation in 2023. Despite this, York noted that Stephanopoulos said "over and over and over again that Trump was liable for rape," which is not accurate.

York admitted "one thing that complicates the matter" is that the judge "later tried to spin the jury's decision."

"He argued that the jury had, quote, 'implicitly' found that Trump was liable for rape. That the evidence implies that the jury found Trump liable for rape. Remember, they checked the 'no' box when asked about rape," York said.

"If you read the judge's decision carefully, you'll see that the judge is deducing that this is what the jury must have thought," he said. "But the fact is, the jury was asked a question. Did Miss Carroll prove that Trump raped her, and they said, 'No.'"

York believes the distinction is critical.

"One of the reasons this is such a big deal is that, in some corners of the Democratic Party, it is very, very important for them to be able to say that Donald Trump is a rapist," he said, noting that Trump's critics often label him a "rapist" as if it were a fact.

"Stephanopoulos' questioning was absolutely in line, was very consistent with this Democratic line that Trump is a 'rapist,'" York said.

York feels Stephanopoulos knew what he was doing, particularly when he used a July 2023 Washington Post article headlined, "Judge clarifies: Yes, Trump was found to have raped E. Jean Carroll" as evidence.

Aaron Blake's Washington Post piece stated, "Despite Carroll's claims that Trump had raped her, [Trump's lawyers] noted, the jury stopped short of saying he committed that particular offense. Instead, jurors opted for a second option: sexual abuse," but insisted a filing from Judge Lewis A. Kaplan "clarified that this is basically a legal distinction without a real-world difference."

Before York spoke to Fox News Digital, he shared his thoughts on social media and included the "judge's spin."

Trump has called the verdict a "disgrace," and denied all wrongdoing.

Fox News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett agrees with York.

"Stephanopoulos didn't want pesky facts to get in the way of his preferred narrative. Jurors rejected Carroll's claim that she was raped," Jarrett told Fox News Digital.

Fox News contributor Andrew McCarthy, a former assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, said that Trump was not found guilty of rape.

"Trump was found civilly liable for sexual abuse. The evidence was that Carroll claimed she was penetrated, though she was unsure — in what she described as a struggle — if it was digitally or by the sex organ. The jury did not find rape proved, but was unanimous that Trump sexually abused Carroll. The verdict does not mean the jury found Carroll was not raped; instead the jury found that there was sexual abuse but could not agree that it included rape. To be clear, this was a civil trial; the jury was not asked to find, and did not find, that Trump was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. He has not been criminally accused, much less convicted, of sexual abuse or rape," McCarthy told Fox News Digital.

ABC News' website reported Sunday that a representative for Trump pushed back about Stephanopoulos' choice of words. The ABC News report pointed to the same filing used by the Washington Post to defend the anchor.

Attorney and law professor Danny Karon believes Stephanopoulos "crossed the line," but explained the complexity of the issue.

"Stephanopoulos went too far when remarking that a New York jury found Donald Trump liable for 'rape.' The question of whether he raped E. Jean Carroll is a semantic one, with even Judge Kaplan explaining that the jury found Carroll's rape allegation to be only 'substantially true,'" Karon told Fox News Digital.

"Her rape allegation was just one of three options triggering damages in her battery lawsuit, along with sexual abuse and forcible touching. By answering 'no' to the question of whether she proved Trump raped her, the jurors indicated they weren't convinced he penetrated her with his penis as is required by New York criminal law's definition of rape. Instead, the jurors concluded Trump sexually abused Carroll by penetrating her with his fingers, which is not rape [according to the state's legal definition]," he continued. "Observing that digital penetration is in 'common modern parlance' rape, Judge Kaplan concluded her rape allegation was only substantially -- not literally -- true. As such, Stephanopoulos crossed the line when he represented that Trump raped Carroll."

York also finds Stephanopoulos to be "a flawed messenger" on the topic, given his past as a communications aide to Bill Clinton.

Despite this, York doesn't think Trump's team should bother pursuing legal action against the ABC News anchor.

"Trump is the most public figure in the world, and ABC could certainly hide behind what the judge said about the verdict," York said.

"That was one of the reasons the judge said this," he added. "I think he was giving everybody cover to come out and say that Trump raped E. Jean Carroll even though the jury said he did not."

ABC News has stood by Stephanopoulos.

"George did his job by asking meaningful questions that are relevant to our viewers," an ABC News spokesperson told Fox News Digital.

Trump's critics have also noted that he isn't in an enviable position as a presidential candidate by having to fall back on only being found liable for sexual abuse rather than rape.


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Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1  seeder  Vic Eldred    one month ago

At least one journalist was on it the day it happened.

She said Stephanopoulos essentially repeated a lie nine times.

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
1.1  devangelical  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    one month ago

meh, I'd like to know why somebody that was the victim of a sex crime would endorse someone that committed one...

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1.1.1  JohnRussell  replied to  devangelical @1.1    one month ago

At this point in time Nancy Mace comes off as a brainwashed MAGA fanatic.

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
1.1.2  devangelical  replied to  devangelical @1.1    one month ago

oh wait, she has no congressional accomplishments to campaign on. playing victim to raise money will have to do...

 
 
 
Ronin2
Professor Quiet
1.1.3  Ronin2  replied to  devangelical @1.1    one month ago

Prove Trump committed a sex crime.

A TDS driven judge, TDS driven jury, and a TDS driven plaintiff being backed by big Democrats donors won a civil judgement in New York. What a fucking shock! The plaintiff couldn't get the when down- or why there were no witnesses. But at least she got the who and where down; but still can't prove it.

Why can't leftists tell the difference between criminal and civil case?

Funny how Democrats have no problem supporting Brandon.

Also, his own daughter mentioning "inappropriate showers" with Brandon in her diary.

Loving the left's hypocrisy more with each and every passing day.

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
1.1.4  devangelical  replied to  Ronin2 @1.1.3    one month ago

but, but, but, what about...

I'm sure nancy's campaign website now features a new picture, a cross splitting the center of her open blouse, ala' katie britt...

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
1.2  TᵢG  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    one month ago

It is a bad thing when people take a truth and then expand it into a related lie.   People should not do that.   People should stick with that which has been well corroborated by evidence.   

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1.2.1  seeder  Vic Eldred  replied to  TᵢG @1.2    one month ago
 People should stick with that which has been well corroborated by evidence.   

People should accept evidence.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
1.2.2  TᵢG  replied to  Vic Eldred @1.2.1    one month ago

Quality, corroborated evidence should be given due consideration.

Hearsay and mere claims should be treated as such.

 
 
 
goose is back
Sophomore Guide
1.2.3  goose is back  replied to  TᵢG @1.2    one month ago
which has been well corroborated by evidence.   

What has been well corroborated by evidence?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
1.2.4  TᵢG  replied to  goose is back @1.2.3    one month ago

Apparently you do not realize that I am implying Stephanopoulos was wrong.

Read my comment again without a preconceived notion.

 
 
 
goose is back
Sophomore Guide
1.2.5  goose is back  replied to  TᵢG @1.2.4    one month ago
Apparently you do not realize

No, I do realize you think Stephanopoulos is wrong (could he be liable for slander). I am asking if you have any facts on the case where he was accused of rape, I can't find anything as what was presented in court. Other than he raped me in 1996.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
1.2.6  TᵢG  replied to  goose is back @1.2.5    one month ago
I am asking if you have any facts on the case where he was accused of rape, I can't find anything as what was presented in court. Other than he raped me in 1996.  

Why would I have facts supporting a rape charge if I am accepting that the judge/jury got it right?

Why would you ask me for facts supporting an allegation that was not found sufficient for the jury?

See, I would not be surprised if Trump raped someone.   But I have a certain degree of confidence that a jury trial which has heard all the evidence and the arguments by both sides has probably the best information on the subject.   If they conclude that Trump did not rape her, I accept that.

Similarly, I accept that Trump sexually abused Carroll.

 
 
 
goose is back
Sophomore Guide
1.2.7  goose is back  replied to  TᵢG @1.2.6    one month ago
Why would I have facts supporting a rape charge

Lighten up, I was just asking if you know any facts of the case.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
1.2.8  TᵢG  replied to  goose is back @1.2.7    one month ago

And I am asking you why you are asking this of me?    Normally one would ask someone else about facts if they are trying to challenge their position.  Since I accept that Trump was found to have not raped Carroll, asking me for facts supporting a rape does not make any sense.    The judge and jury saw all the facts —more than you or I will ever see— and concluded no rape.

 
 
 
Tacos!
Professor Guide
1.2.9  Tacos!  replied to  goose is back @1.2.5    one month ago
could he be liable for slander

Beyond whether or not actual malice could be proven, the plaintiff still has to be damaged by the defamation. At this point, it’s hard to imagine how anyone do more to damage Trump’s reputation than he himself already has.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Guide
1.3  Split Personality  replied to  Vic Eldred @1    one month ago
She said Stephanopoulos essentially repeated a lie nine times.

According to the existing definitions in the State of New York, the jury accordingly could not find  rape.

However according to the Feds, the FBI specifically, any penetration of the vagina or anus with anything, against the will

of the victim, constitutes rape.

Most of what I have heard in the media has been described correctly as 'digital rape', but there is apparently no such code in NY.

Yet.

 
 
 
Sparty On
Professor Principal
2  Sparty On    one month ago

The key to dealing with Democrats like Georgie Porgie puddin pie is to adopt the Honey Badger Ethos.    Whatever they say, don’t a shit what they say or think.

At best they are pests trying to stick a proboscis of disinformation through your skin.    Wait for the right moment and swat em away.

Splat!

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
3  Sean Treacy    one month ago

The jury was specifically asked if he raped her and found him not liable. Anyone who claims the jury found him guilty of rape is lying. 

 
 
 
Tacos!
Professor Guide
4  Tacos!    one month ago

This is an unnecessary and counterproductive tactic that has been going on for years with Trump. They exaggerate what he has done or said to make people more horrified. It’s unnecessary because the bare truth is bad enough. It’s counterproductive because of the reaction.

Sexual abuse should be enough to disqualify a person from being president in the judgment of the voters. But then, someone in the media exaggerates it into rape, and the morons who vote for this maniac respond with “he didn’t rape anybody, you liars. It was only sexual abuse, so everything is fine.”

 
 
 
Igknorantzruls
Freshman Quiet
5  Igknorantzruls    one month ago

Well according to this, ole "honest Don' bees s Modern Rapist     

Modern Definitions :

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
5.1  JohnRussell  replied to  Igknorantzruls @5    one month ago

In the 2016 video trump brags about being able to grab women's private parts because he is a celebrity

in the E Jean Carroll case that is exactly what he is accused of doing.

Carol's lawyer was smart enough to ask trump in his deposition whether or not celebrities were allowed to grab women's private parts

trump, quite stupidly replied that celebrities have been given unspoken permission to grab women's private parts for a million years

the lawyer then asks trump if he considers himself to be a celebrity and he says something like a lot of people say so

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
5.1.1  Sean Treacy  replied to  JohnRussell @5.1    one month ago

Crazy how she came forward publicly with the story  after trump’s  video went public.  What  are the odds a plaintiff in a  lawsuit would have a claim that matches a narrative that was already public?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
5.1.2  JohnRussell  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.1    one month ago

Trump is an idiot and his own deposition played a big part in in him getting ' convicted'.

By the way, sworn witness testimony at the trial was that E Jean Carroll had told a friend of hers about the incident shortly after it happened

 
 
 
Igknorantzruls
Freshman Quiet
5.1.3  Igknorantzruls  replied to  JohnRussell @5.1    one month ago
he lawyer then asks trump if he considers himself to be a celebrity and he says something like a lot of people say so

his INFAMOUS for sure

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
5.1.4  TᵢG  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.1    one month ago

Another feeble attempt to defend Trump.   Even after a formal trial and a jury verdict we still see attempts to imply Trump is innocent.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
5.1.5  Sean Treacy  replied to  TᵢG @5.1.4    one month ago

It's just silly to think that someone who waits 30 years to come forward with a story that conforms with story that just went viral is "proof" of anything.      Imagine not thinking the lincoln project lawyers that pushed her lawsuit  didn't tell her how great it would be if her story sounded like the Trump tape. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
5.1.6  TᵢG  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.5    one month ago

It is the job of the judge and jury to determine a just verdict.   You continue to imply that Trump is innocent and that the finding of liability was unjust.

Also, I did not suggest that the allegation was proof of anything.   I noted that the most definitive information we have is the verdict.

 
 
 
Tacos!
Professor Guide
5.1.7  Tacos!  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.1    one month ago
What  are the odds a plaintiff in a  lawsuit would have a claim that matches a narrative that was already public?

Actually, it’s super common. See Harvey Weinstein, Bill Cosby, etc.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
5.1.8  Sean Treacy  replied to  Tacos! @5.1.7    one month ago
Actually, it’s super common. See Harvey Weinstein, Bill Cosby, etc.

What were they on caught on tape saying? 

But yes, I agree that it's incredibly common for plaintiff's lawyers to coach witnesses to make sure their story gives them the best chance to recover money. I would fully expect a plaintiff's attorney to say "Trump has already admitted  on tape he grabs women by the pussy.  It would be helpful if he did that to you.  Did Trump grab you by the pussy?" 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
5.1.9  Sean Treacy  replied to  TᵢG @5.1.6    one month ago
 You continue to imply that Trump is innocent and that the finding of liability was unju

The finding of liability is incredibly unjust. She's an adult who waited 30 years to bring a lawsuit, by which time an effective defense was impossible.   Statutes of Limitation exist for a reason. 

 
 
 
Igknorantzruls
Freshman Quiet
5.1.10  Igknorantzruls  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.5    one month ago

you do not feel the changing of the statute of limitations played into the decision ?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
5.1.11  TᵢG  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.9    one month ago
The finding of liability is incredibly unjust.

Of course.   Judge Kaplan and both juries were wrong but Sean Treacy of NT is right.    256

There is a point in time where the defending of Trump gets ridiculous.   After a definitive verdict is surely well past that point.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
5.1.12  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @5.1.11    one month ago

Remember tig , trump is always the victim

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
5.1.13  devangelical  replied to  TᵢG @5.1.11    one month ago

gee, some people sure are sensitive about holding those that perpetrate sex crimes accountable ...

 
 
 
George
Junior Expert
5.1.14  George  replied to  devangelical @5.1.13    one month ago

I guess that is why Biden has ordered Garland to stand down on Epstein's client list, too much chance he will lose the senate and major donors.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
5.1.15  Sean Treacy  replied to  TᵢG @5.1.11    one month ago
udge Kaplan and both juries were wrong

Lol. Tell me what the jury actually decided on the question of whether Trump raped her or not. 

After a definitive verdict is surely well past that point

Exactly. The Jury's opinion is definitive. Why don't you accept it? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
5.1.16  TᵢG  replied to  Sean Treacy @5.1.15    one month ago
Well me what the jury actually decided on the question of whether Trump raped her or not. 

Why, are you unaware that they did NOT conclude that Trump raped her?

Exactly. The Jury's opinion is definitive. Why don't you accept it? 

You seem to be confused.   Where do I suggest that I do not accept the verdict?

Oh, maybe it is presumption on your part (without reading what I have written) that I think Stephanopoulus was correct.   Is that it, Sean?   You presumed instead of read?

See @1.2 and @1.2.4


Addendum:  also see @1.2.6

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
5.2  Tessylo  replied to  Igknorantzruls @5    one month ago

The former 'president' is/was very fond of putting his grubby little fingers and his little bitty mushroom wherever he pleased.  

 
 

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