Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model and Playmate of the Year of 1998, claims in an eight-page, handwritten document that she had an affair with Donald Trump after they met at a Playboy Mansion party in 2006 after Trump's wife Melania gave birth to their son Barron.
Trump "immediately took a liking to me, kept talking to me - telling me how beautiful I was, etc. It was so obvious that a Playmate Promotions exec said, 'Wow, he was all over you - I think you could be his next wife,'" she wrote in the document in which she memorialized the nine-month affair, according to Ronan Farrow in The New Yorker, which received it from a friend of McDougal's.
An Oct., 2017, Ronan Farrow article in The New Yorker exposed the Harvey Weinstein scandal, which began the #MeToo movement to uncover sexual harassment.
McDougal reportedly had a nondisclosure agreement with American Media, Inc., the National Enquirer's publishing company, which bought the exclusive rights to her story and then dumped it.
Buying a salatious story and getting paid to not publish it is a common practice in the industry, Farrow reported, known as "catch and kill."
The company has said they did not find the story credible. David Pecker, the chairman of A.M.I. is known to be a friend of Trump.
About their first dinner date in a private bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel, McDougal wrote, "I was so nervous! I was into his intelligence + charm. Such a polite man. We talked for a couple hours – then, it was 'ON'! We got naked + had sex."
She said Trump offered her money when she was leaving. "I looked at him (+ felt sad) + said, 'No thanks - I'm not 'that girl.' I slept w/you because I like you - NOT for money' - He told me 'you are special.'"
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McDougal said the affair ended due to Trump's inappropriate comments. Later, she became religious, according to The Telegraph.
McDougal's account of Trump's efforts to seduce her resemble the stories of two other women, Stephanie Clifford (a porn star also known as "Stormy Daniels") and Summer Zervos, Farrow noted. Clifford claimed to multiple publications that she had sex with Trump around the time that his wife Melania had given birth to their son Barron. Zervos claimed Trump sexually assaulted her when she refused his advances.
A White House spokesperson denied in a statement that Trump had an affair with McDougal. "This is an old story that is just more fake news. The President says he never had a relationship with McDougal."
In January, the Wall Street Journal reported that a lawyer for Trump, Michael Cohen, had paid $130,000 in hush money to Clifford to keep quiet an alleged affair during the election season. Thursday, Clifford told AP, through her manager, that she believes the Cohen broke the non-disclosure agreement, which allows her to talk about the alleged affair.
"Everything is off now, and Stormy is going to tell her story," Clifford's manager said.
Tony Perkins, president of Family Research Council, explained last month why some evangelicals still support Trump.
"If this were happening today, his evangelical support would not exist. Adultery was wrong then, and it's wrong now. If the rumors turn out to be true, then that behavior is unconscionable," he wrote in an op-ed. "Americans can only hold President Donald Trump accountable for what he does in office. We can't do anything about the past. Americans may not like it, find it distasteful, and wish it hadn't happened -- but it did. Like any of us, he needs to own his failings and take responsibility for his actions. And in some of these cases, I believe he did."
He added, "That's why, in explaining how evangelicals could come to the point of supporting Mr. Trump, I told the reporter that we -- of all people -- understand new beginnings. So, our attitude toward Trump politically was, 'You get a mulligan. You get a do-over here.' Some people interpreted that statement -- incorrectly -- as excusing, or worse, condoning Donald Trump's past behaviors. Nothing could be farther from the truth."