The Department of Justice under the Biden administration filed an appeal Monday to defend former President Donald Trump against a defamation lawsuit being brought by writer E. Jean Carroll.

More than a year ago Carroll accused Trump of raping her in a department store in the mid-90s after they bumped into one another while shopping. Carroll claims that Trump attacked her in the changing rooms and raped her. Trump has denied all allegations by referring to the event as “fiction” and stating that Carroll was “not his type.”

Carroll filed a defamation suit in response to Trump’s denial. The DOJ’s initial attempts to become the defendant in the case were dismissed by U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan in 2019 during the Trump presidency. Now, the DOJ is filing an appeal for the defense case in the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City, on the basis that everything the former president did and said is considered a “government action.”

DOJ officials recognize Trump’s response to Carroll was crude but insists that all of the comments “pertained to the denial of wrongdoing.”

Carroll expressed her feelings about the appeal, stating “I am angry! I am offended.” She retweeted a series of tweets from various news outlets and other women who are coming to her defense.

Roberta Kaplan, Carroll’s lawyer, said, “The DOJ’s position is not only legally wrong, it is morally wrong since it would give federal officials free license to cover up private sexual misconduct by publicly brutalizing any woman who has the courage to come forward.”

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