Amid a flood of claims of inappropriate sexual behavior against men in Hollywood, sports, the media and politics, allegations about President Trump have resurfaced.
And now a new report suggests some of Trump’s accusers were “compensated.”
The details come from The Hill, which reported it reviewed relevant documents and interviewed some of the principals.
The Hill reported Lisa Bloom, a “well-known women’s rights lawyer,” sought “to arrange compensation from donors and tabloid media outlets for women who made or considered making sexual allegations against Donald Trump.”
This all happened during the 2016 presidential race, the report said.
Bloom’s mother is celebrity attorney Gloria Allred, who represented one of the women who made sexual-misconduct allegations against Roy Moore when he was running for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
The report said Bloom’s efforts “included offering to sell alleged victims’ stories to TV outlets in return for a commission for herself, arranging a donor to pay off one Trump accuser’s mortgage and attempting to secure a six-figure payment for another woman who ultimately declined to come forward after being offered as much as $750,000.”
The women’s accounts were backed by “contemporaneous contractual documents, emails and text messages reviewed by The Hill, including an exchange of texts between one woman and Bloom that suggested political action committees supporting Hillary Clinton were contacted during the effort,” the report said.
Bloom herself told The Hill she engaged in “discussions” about donations for women who did make, or had considered making, claims against Trump.
“Donors reached out to my firm directly to help some of the women I represent,” she affirmed.
She insisted her goal was to help the women relocate or arrange security, not “to pressure the women to come forward.”
The Hill reported Bloom said she had no contact with Hillary Clinton or her campaign, but she “declined to address any contacts with super PACs that supported the Democratic presidential nominee.”
The Hill described one scenario:
One Bloom client who received financial help from Bloom was New York City makeup artist Jill Harth. The former beauty contestant manager filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against Trump in 1997 and then withdrew it under pressure. The news media discovered the litigation during the election, and Harth’s name became public in the summer of 2016. She asked Bloom to represent her in the fall after hearing Trump describe her allegations against him as false, and became a vocal critic of Trump. “I consider myself lucky to have had Lisa Bloom by my side after my old lawsuit resurfaced. She advised me with great competence and compassion,” Harth told The Hill. Harth said she did not originally ask Bloom for money, even though her cosmetics business suffered from the notoriety of the campaign stories about her. But later, Bloom arranged a small payment from the licensing of some photos to the news media, and then set up a GoFundMe.com account to raise money for Harth in October 2016. ‘Jill put herself out there, facing off with Donald Trump. Let’s show her some love,’ the online fundraising appeal set up by Bloom’s husband declared. The effort raised a little over $2,300. Bloom then arranged for a donor to make a larger contribution to help Harth pay off the mortgage on her Queens apartment in New York City. The amount was under $30,000, according to a source directly familiar with Harth’s situation. Public records show Harth’s mortgage was recorded as extinguished on Dec. 19, 2016.
The report said Harth maintained that the payments didn’t affect her allegations.
Trump has denied acting inappropriately and dismissed the “Access Hollywood” tape of him using offensive language as “locker room talk.”
The Hill reported the documents it reviewed also revealed Bloom’s “strong dislike” for Trump, and in one communication she referred to him as a “sick predator.”
The report said some of the women were unhappy with Bloom’s attitude.
In an exchange one woman who considered making allegations about Trump, and was facing a deadline, sounded off: “What does time have to do with this? Time to bury Trump??? You want my story to bury trump for what? Personal gain? See that’s why I have trust issues!!”
In her case, The Hill reported, she said Trump had “ended the advance” when she asked him to stop and was considering making claims to support her friend, Harth.
“The woman said Bloom initially offered a $10,000 donation to the woman’s favorite church, an account backed up by text messages the two exchanged,” The Hill said.
The report said that particular case involved discussions about demands for escalating numbers, at one point reaching $2 million, which Bloom described as a nonstarter.
The woman explained she was trying to draw out Bloom and see how high the offer, which ended up maxing out in the low six figures, might go.
The Hill said Bloom explained donor money never was meant “to entice” women to make claims.